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Photo of Martha Kenley, FHWA National DBE Program Manager

The Institute is a longtime supporter of the Hispanic Contractors Association of the Carolinas (HCAC), which recently announced that Federal Highway Administration National DBE Program Manager Martha Kenley will provide the keynote address at its 2015 HCAC Conference and Brilliance Awards. In addition to offering business development training and support for HCAC members, The Institute also exhibits with the organization during various conference activities and special events.

Guest speaker Kenley is responsible for developing policies and advises state transportation agencies, such as NCDOT, on all DBE program areas; works with the U.S. Department of Transportation on drafting and reviewing regulations; and advances national program initiatives. Kenley will attend the conference event traveling from her office at FHWA’s Headquarters office in Washington, DC.

The 2015 HCAC Conference and Brilliance Awards will feature a variety of distinguished speakers from government and the construction industry including opening remarks from Charlotte Mayor Dan Clodfelter and a bonding presentation from Surety & Fidelity Association of America Vice President Joanne Brooks, Esq. The event also will include two informative panel discussions with major construction firms. Messer Construction, Balfour Beatty Construction and JE Dunn Construction will make up the General Contractors Panel, moderated by American DBE Magazine Publisher Shelton Russell.

During the Contractors Panel, general contractors and HCAC minority subcontractors who have recently conducted business together will share their experiences. Conference attendees will hear first-hand how they formed partnerships and the successful outcomes that followed. “We, at HCAC, are extremely proud of the advancements of our contractor members and of the progress they have made to work with some of the most well recognized regional and national general contractors. We want to share their journey to inspire conference attendees,” said Julian Arcila, HCAC Executive Director.

Wells Fargo, Duke Energy, Food Lion, Time Warner and Novant Health will form the Champions of Diversity panel, moderated by Arcila. The panel will share their experiences working with minority vendors; and discuss their specific programs and how contractors can benefit by partnering with them. Arcila said, “This conference is expected to be one of the greatest resources for minority contractors to network and develop business relationships and to empower them to climb the ladder of success.”

The HCAC Construction Conference will take place on Tuesday, July 21, 2015 from 8:30 am to 2:00 pm, at the Omni Hotel in Charlotte, NC, and there will also be a networking reception the night before, which will provide the opportunity for attendees to mingle and prepare for a productive day at the conference. For more information about the event and to register visit