Ohio University Procurement Technical Assistance Center (OHIO PTAC), a program of the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, is expanding its reach to 62 counties to further connect small and mid-sized businesses with federal, state and local government contracts.
OHIO PTAC will now administer both the Cleveland PTAC, including Cuyahoga, Erie, Huron and Lorain counties, and Lakeland Community College PTAC, providing services in Ashtabula, Geauga, Lake and Portage counties.
The new OHIO PTAC Cleveland office will share a space downtown with the Cleveland District Small Business Administration (SBA) and Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE), which consists of a team of retired business executives and owners who volunteer their time to assist businesses.
“Having an office in the heart of Cuyahoga County’s large, vibrant business community will make it easier for businesses to get the help they need in expanding their government contracting efforts,” said Cleveland Procurement Specialist Karen Wivell, who has over six years of procurement experience.
Sharon Hopkins, director of OHIO PTAC, part of Ohio’s Procurement Technical Assistance program, said the move will allow PTAC to combine their services with SBA and SCORE to provide in-depth assistance to small business in the area. The expansion in Cleveland will also make it easier for business in the downtown area to access procurement services.
Hopkins said that by sharing a common space, Cleveland PTAC and Cleveland SBA will cement their relationship, just like Columbus PTAC has done with Columbus SBA.
“Being able to give back to the business community in the city that gave so much to me is really rewarding,” said Wivell, who was born and spent most of her corporate career in Cleveland. “I want to see northeast Ohio businesses continue to grow and provide more job opportunities for its people.”