Event Details


Governor's Conference on Diverse Business Development

October 23-24, 2019

Potawatomi Hotel & Conference Center
1721 W. Canal St.


MORNING • Wednesday, Oct. 23

The Contracting Academy Logo

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
The Contracting Academy is a learning opportunity for businesses to grow their technical knowledge of contracting with the State of Wisconsin, federal government and government prime contracts. This series of workshops will benefit established businesses looking to grow and development their government sales and focus on three areas:

  • Government construction contracting
  • Selling goods and services to the government
  • Federal manufacturing and technology

The Contracting Academy will be held at Potawatomi Hotel & Convention Center.

This event is co-hosted by Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and Wisconsin Procurement Institute. Separate registration is required.

Download information on the Wisconsin Business Certification Program

AFTERNOON • Wednesday, Oct. 23

Economic Opportunity Sessions

A series of presentations and panels on upcoming major public and private projects as well as topics relevant to small businesses

1:30 p.m.
Registration and networking

2:00 p.m.
Presentation: Wisconsin’s Current Footprint on Race and Ethnicity

Contract Opportunities

  • Wisconsin Center
  • 2020 Democratic National Convention, Milwaukke
  • Komatsu HQ

Panel: Cybersecurity Awareness

Wisconsin Supplier Network
Online directory to connect suppliers and service providers to new business opportunities

EVENING • Wednesday, Oct. 23

38th Annual MARKETPLACE Reception

5:30 p.m.
Welcome Keystone Event Sponsor by U.S. Bank
Business networking reception with businesses, government agency representatives, public officials, lenders, business service providers and MARKETPLACE corporate sponsors

Remarks by WEDC Deputy Secretary/COO Tricia Braun

Reception program

  • Business and Community Development Awards
  • Diverse Business State Contractor Awards (Wisconsin Department of Administration)
  • 8(a) Graduate of the Year and Minority Business Champion Awards (SBA)
  • Networking

8:00 p.m.
Reception adjourns

Thursday, Oct. 24

Governor’s Awards Breakfast

7 a.m.
Registration opens

8:00 a.m.
Remarks by Keystone Sponsor, U.S. Bank

Remarks by breakfast sponsor, Milwaukee Business Journal

Introduction by WEDC Secretary and CEO Melissa Hughes

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers

Presentation of:

  • MARKETPLACE Sponsor Hall of Fame
  • Minority-Owned Business Awards
  • Women-Owned Business Awards
  • Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Business Awards

Expo Hall

9:00 a.m.

  • Buyer meetings: One-on-one matchmaking meetings with dozens of federal, state, local, university and corporate buyers
  • Exhibitors: Over 100 exhibitors, including small businesses, lenders, business resources, professional service, and government agencies
  • Business networking lounge: Centrally located within the Expo Hall for making connections with potential buyers and partners

12:00 p.m.
Business Lunch

Remarks by Keystone sponsor, U.S. Bank

Remarks by WEDC Vice President of Business and Community Development Mary Gage

  • Small business success stories
  • Contracting/procurement panel

1:30 – 4:00 p.m.
Expo hall and one-on-one buyer meetings resume

Hotel Accommodations

Potawatomi Hotel & Casino
1611 West Canal St., Milwaukee
Reservations: 844-217-4100
Hotel website

Please note that you are responsible for making your own room reservation at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.

Group rate code: MAR10222019