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Robert Parchment, President of Robert Parchment Plumbing and Heating, Inc.., a MBE Certified contractor comes from a family of builders. His father was a general contractor , his brother in-law a plumber, and his uncle a mason. "It was just expected that I would go into business for myself," says Parchment, and "I choose plumbing".

In terms of Parchment's own success. It was SCA's Mentor Program that really made the difference. He entered the program and began to bid on projects. His first project was for $ 425,000.00. It was a one year contract that he completed in a record six-months. In 2006 Parchment completed contracts in excess of $ 2.8 million with over 65 plumbers at the height of construction that year. His firm continues to grow each year with new contracts with the SCA and other owners.

Parchment is a strong advocate of MWBE certification. According to Parchment, MWBE status is of tremendous benefit to his company, given the emphasis of public agencies have placed on contracting with MWBE firms. It has provided Parchment with expanded opportunity to work on public projects. To Parchment being an MWBE business owner entails "quality plumbing service and at the same time opportunity". Click here to read more about this article


DEVELOPING MINORITY BUSINESSES -A model program at N.Y.C.’s School Construction Authority

 Source: The Network Journal (September 2006 issue)

Robert Parchment, owner of Robert Parchment Plumbing & Heating in Harlem, says that when he started his business in 1993, he knew very little about owning and running a business. After just three years in the SCA program he landed his first contract for $425,000.

he SCA program, gave me the training and business acumen that I needed to make my business a success,” Parchment says. “In 2004, my company signed our biggest contract, worth $2.8 million.” Click here to read more about this article


 by: Diane Greer 

Minority and women owned enterprises in the construction industry have increased in number across the region, but they remain underutilized resources that face serious hurdles in growing their businesses. Now, new programs and recently passed legislation and mandates aim to address the obstacles, which have not changed over the years. Breaking into the network of established firms bidding on projects remains difficult. “People in this industry tend to deal with the people that they have always dealt with,” says Earle Walker, executive director of the Regional Alliance for Small Contractors. Being a woman presents additional barriers, says Maureen Fritch, resident of Fritch Construction in East Northport, N.Y., and founder of the Women Builders Council. “It is a male-dominated field where there is a good old boys club. They’ve been working with each other for years, and to have doors open to a new contractor is next to impossible.”

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Feature Story - March 200

The Industry’s Minority and Women-Owned Firms Face Challengers


Vendor opportunities with the city are scare for M/WBEs


Special to the AmNews

Originally posted 6/26/2008

“Minority” and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs) across the Big Apple rejoiced three years ago when Mayor Michael Bloomberg signed into law a plan that guaranteed them a bigger piece of the economic pie in city contracts. But the ebullience and elation diminished and turned to anger and frustration for some of those same entrepreneurs earlier this month after an embarrassing exposé appeared in a local newspaper.  

Robert Parchment, owner of Robert Parchment Heating and Plumbing in Harlem, said M/WBEs continue to be excluded when it comes to being awarded city contracts—especially in construction. “This is the greatest period of growth in the history of New York City,” Parchment said in an interview with The Amsterdam News. “Yet, despite this fact, Blackowned businesses continue to be left out of projects at all levels.”

Not Much Better in New Jersey Across the river in New Jersey, legislators sought to emulate New York’s highly touted minority procurement initiative. For example, late last year New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine authorized the transfer of the newly established Division of Minority and Women Business Development from the Office of Economic Growth to the Department of Treasury. Nina Moseley, the former senior director of business services for the New Jersey Commerce Commission, was tapped to head the division—becoming the second person to sit at the helm of the division in just over a year. Similar to the Bloomberg city plan, Corzine expected to dramatically increase the number of state contracts awarded to M/WBEs, a feat that has yet to occur. Click here to read more about this article