Winners of Edison Electric Institute's 2017 Business Diversity Awards Named - Techfunnel
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Winners of Edison Electric Institute’s 2017 Business Diversity Awards Named

Winners of Edison Electric Institute's 2017 Business Diversity Awards Named

The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) has announced the winners of its 2017 Business Diversity Awards.

Presented annually, the awards recognize companies for their outstanding efforts in advancing purchasing opportunities for diverse suppliers within the electric power industry, particularly minority, women-owned, veteran, and LGBTQ businesses.

This year, Duke Energy was awarded the industry’s overall Excellence Award by EEI for its efforts to improve business diversity and inclusion. In 2016 the company sponsored various educational workshops and industry seminars, hosted several business development events, promoted the personal and professional development of supplier representatives, and proactively continues to seek diverse suppliers. Such efforts have made lasting positive effects on economic development locally, regionally, and nationally.

EEI President Tom Kuhn congratulated Duke Energy for its comprehensive initiatives and commitment to diversity and inclusion for which it won this year’s Excellence Award. “Duke Energy has developed beneficial programs to support minority-owned businesses and truly values a diverse supplier base that reflects the communities Duke Energy serves,” Kuhn stated.

Swati Daji, Senior Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer at Duke Energy, said, “At Duke Energy, we value diverse skills, experiences, perspectives and backgrounds, and understand how important diversity and inclusion is in powering the lives of our customers and the vitality of our communities. We are honored to be recognized by our industry for our business diversity achievements with our suppliers.”

PS Energy Group Inc., a Hispanic woman-owned energy firm and leader in fuel management which is based in Atlanta, was awarded EEI’s Diverse Business Award. This award is given to a company that displays support of business diversity through development initiatives. PS Energy Group has displayed such support with its commitment to developing mutually beneficial business relationships with other small businesses and certified diverse small businesses.

Kuhn said, “PS Energy has demonstrated tremendous leadership by supporting diversity through its business development programs, and is greatly deserving of the Diverse Business Award for 2017.”

Livia Whisenhunt, CEO of PS Energy Group Inc., said she was humbled by the recognition. “My association with EEI, as well as my members and clients for the past two decades has motivated me and the PS Energy team to embrace supporting business diversity initiatives,” Whisenhunt stated.

SEEL LLC., another minority-owned energy program services company which specializes in quality, cost-effectiveness, and community, and is headquartered in Detroit, was awarded EEI’s Prime Supplier Leadership Award. This award is given to a company that displays diversity efforts through its business practices and economic impact. In 2016, SEEL LLC. exceeded its original goal by spending more than $5 million on total purchases with minority-owned businesses.

Kuhn congratulated SEEL LLC. for winning this year’s Prime Supplier Leadership Award by saying, “EEI applauds SEEL LLC’s innovative supplier diversity initiatives that have enabled the company to significantly exceed its goals.”

Louis James, CEO of SEEL LLC., said, “It is not a matter of doing what we can, but doing what we must to create and sustain positive change within our community. We are very proud to receive the EEI Prime Supplier Leadership Award, because it supports our company objectives that are a direct reflection of what we feel should be a larger industry discussion.”

As the association that represents all U.S. investor-owned electric companies, EEI’s U.S. members provide electricity for 220 million Americans, and operate in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. EEI also has more than 60 international electric companies as International Members, and hundreds of industry suppliers and related organizations as Associate Members.

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Danita Evangeline
Danita Evangeline
Danita is a student, writer, and movie enthusiast. She enjoys food, reading, and traveling. She's currently a content writer and graphic designer for

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