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FCC Online Event to Advance Diversity in Tech and Communications

Symposium and virtual fair to be held online April 28

FCC, Federal Communications CommissionAs part of its efforts to improve diversity within the ranks of the communications and tech industries, the Federal Communications Commission has set April 28 for its diversity symposium and virtual fair.

The Tech and Communications Diversity Opportunity Symposium and Virtual Fair will be held online on Wednesday, April 28 from 12–6:45 p.m. EDT. The symposium and fair is designed to provide information, resources and support to diverse communications businesses including those focused on legacy communications industries — like radio, TV, cable and satellite — as well as  technology-oriented industries seeking business opportunities as vendors, suppliers or partners. The commission is particularly seeking to support small businesses, minority- and ethnic-owned businesses, women-owned businesses, veteran-owned businesses, LGBTQ-owned businesses and disabled-owned businesses.

[Read: New NAB Committee Will Address Diversity and Inclusion]

Two informative panels from 12–3:45 p.m. will kickstart the symposium. The first panel, Your Tax Dollars at Work: Government Programs and Initiatives, will feature a discussion with representatives from federal, state and local government agencies on financing and procurement opportunities and trends. This session will highlight diversity requirements and standards; training, education and consulting opportunities; as well as mentoring, incubation and apprenticeship programs.

The second panel, entitled For We Have Promises to Keep: Private Sector Programs and Initiatives, will include representatives from private sector companies that will discuss procurement opportunities and trends, new and updated funding sources, as well as discounted opportunities for diverse communications businesses.

The afternoon event will include a Virtual Fair from 4–6:45 p.m., which will feature one-on-one confidential consultations offering individualized advice on a number of strategies and initiatives including supplier and vendor tactics, financial support options and mentoring and incubation programs. The Virtual Fair is open to owners, managers and employees of diverse communications businesses.

The symposium is being co-sponsored by  the Media Bureau, the FCC’s Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment (ACDDE) and the ACDDE member Internet Association. Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel will welcome symposium participants while Edith McCloud, acting national director of the Minority Business Development Agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, will deliver keynote remarks.

The symposium will be presented as a Zoom webinar. More information and the full agenda can be found here.