Empowering Minority Businesses.
Driving Economic Equality.

We fight for the laws and policies that help minority business enterprises (MBEs) and minority entrepreneurs grow, succeed, and eliminate the racial wealth gap.

What We Do

MBELDEF acts as a legal watchdog group for minority business enterprises and minority entrepreneurs in the legislative, executive, and judicial branches at the federal, state, and local levels to ensure equal treatment and equal opportunity for minority-owned businesses.

Our primary purpose is to eradicate wealth disparities by empowering minority businesses in order to raise the economic prospects of all communities, especially communities of color with the greatest need.

How We Do It

MBELDEF has historically been focused on three action areas:

Advocacy, Education & Organizing

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A leader in legal advocacy

MBELDEF is the gold standard in legal advocacy for minority businesses, acting in the courts, legislatures, and through the regulatory process at the federal, state, and local levels to promote and enforce laws and policies that position minority business enterprises to become competitive players in domestic and global markets.

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Ideally Positioned for Effective Results

We are uniquely prepared to marshal the past and current evidence of marketplace discrimination that is necessary for a strong legal defense for the policies that give minority businesses a fair chance and promote wealth generation for communities that need it.

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Fighting Anti-MBE Extremists

MBELDEF is the only organization equipped with the skills and experience to take the legal fight to the well-funded and well-organized conservative legal foundations currently attacking minority business programs. And we have the know-how to teach others to build new and innovative programs to advance MBE success.

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NON-PARTISAN EDUCATION ON MBE LAW & POLICY

MBELDEF has rich and admirable experience of providing non-partisan education and testimony to Congress, the bar and the executive branch on all aspects of law and policy related to minority business enterprises.

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Empowering MBES to Determine Their Own Destiny

Our training and education efforts are first and foremost intended to empower minority-owned businesses themselves to defend policies that promote fairness and to build exciting, effective and legally defensible new programs where they are needed or where they have been struck down.

MBELDEF is a trusted intermediary that collaborates and coordinates with various minority business organizations and their members to inform and build a common cause on minority business legal and policy issues.

In the past, these activities have included:

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Convening MBE groups

to pursue common policy interests

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Promoting collaboration

among MBE firms to pursue emerging market opportunities

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Acting as an early warning system

for MBEs about challenges emerging in the courts & policy contexts

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Providing briefings

to minority business enterprise firms and organizations regarding new legal and policy threats to their prosperity and existence

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Providing orientation & training

for minority business owners and their advocates for making their best case to policymakers and courts at all levels

The MBELDEF Impact

We have been fighting for MBEs for 40 years, collaborating with diverse leaders in law and business in the public and private sectors to ensure a future where minority businesses and entrepreneurs thrive.

Inspiring Track Record & Credibility

NO OTHER ORGANIZATION FIGHTS FOR THE LEGAL RIGHTS OF MBES

LASER FOCUSED WITH ONE SOLE MANDATE

A Powerful Voice for Equity & Inclusion

Black-Owned Businesses

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Hispanic-Owned Businesses

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Asian-Owned Businesses

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Native American-Owned Businesses

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Who We Are

Top Notch Legal Advocates. MBE Empowerment Experts. Trusted Partners.

Parren J. Mitchell - Founder - Minority Business Enterprise Legal Defense and Education Fund - MBELDEF

Parren J. Mitchell

Founder

MBELDEF was founded by the first Black congressman from Maryland.

Anthony W. Robinson - Chairman of the Board - Minority Business Enterprise Legal Defense and Education Fund - MBELDEF

Don Roberts

Chairman of the Board

Today, we are led by the CEO of Caracal, a certified Minority Business Enterprise (MBE).

Parren J. Mitchell - Founder - Minority Business Enterprise Legal Defense and Education Fund - MBELDEF

Parren J. Mitchell

Founder

MBELDEF was founded by the first Black congressman from Maryland.

Anthony W. Robinson - Chairman of the Board - Minority Business Enterprise Legal Defense and Education Fund - MBELDEF

Don Roberts

Chairman of the Board

Today, we are led by the CEO of Caracal, a certified Minority Business Enterprise (MBE).

Get Involved

Join us in creating a more inclusive and equitable future for minority-owned businesses by supporting MBELDEF’s mission and getting involved today.

Who Can Help

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Public, private, family, and corporate foundations looking to make a long-term investment in eradicating the racial wealth gap, fostering economic growth, achieving racial justice, and promoting diversity.

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Public & private corporations interested in promoting the advancement of MBEs

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Individuals of goodwill who are willing to take a stand and invest in this endeavor

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Large, successful minority-owned businesses that have benefited from minority business enterprise programs and want to give back

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Small minority-owned businesses who want to be a part of the solution and contribute to the MBE community

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Community and civic leaders who support fairness and equity for minority-owned businesses

Donate Today

Donate Today

By supporting MBELDEF, you directly contribute to creating a more inclusive business environment and driving positive change for underrepresented communities.

Steven Sims, a current Board Member, received both his BA and MS from Columbia University. He is a nationally recognized advocate for minority businesses and, among other roles, served as Vice President for Programs, Field Operations, and Government Relations for the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) where his responsibilities included the development, coordination, and implementation of programs and projects, and, where necessary, he provided technical assistance/training to the National Office as well as its Regional Councils.

He also created and led the NMSDC Government Relations Office in Washington DC. Over many years working with MBELDEF, he and Tony Robinson, were able to create synergy between the two organizations which resulted in the protection and support for minority business development around the country. Mr. Sims also has a wealth of experience stemming from important positions in several public, private, and nonprofit entities and institutions.

Nicholas Perkins, past Chairman of the Board and current Board Member, holds an undergraduate degree from Fayetteville State University and an MBA from Howard University. He is nationally recognized for his dynamic and visionary entrepreneurial leadership and has received many awards and accolades.

The son of a single mother, Perkins was only 24 years old when he founded Perkins Management Services which specializes in providing contract food service management to colleges, universities, hospitals, and the Department of Defense. At 40, Perkin’s acquired Fuddrucker’s restaurant chain, becoming the first African American to own a nationwide burger franchise.

Perkins is passionate about civil rights and is a Trustee of the National Urban League and a proud member of Omega Psi Phi fraternity.

Sarah von der Lippe, the pro-bono Chief Legal Counsel, holds an undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a law degree from Harvard University. Ms. von der Lippe is herself a small business owner, having founded a solo civil rights legal practice devoted to defending and promoting the success of minority businesses across the nation. She is widely recognized as one of the foremost experts on the law and policy related to MBEs.

For most of the past two decades, Ms. von der Lippe has acted as the Chief Legal Counsel to MBELDEF on a completely pro-bono basis and has assisted Mr. Robinson in every aspect of operating MBELDEF as an unfunded but agile and effective legal watchdog organization.

Monique Young, who currently acts as MBELDEF’s Chief Accounting Officer and Development Strategist has a BS in Accounting from Shaw University, MBA from Strayer University, and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Walden University. She enjoys working with numbers, administration, and strategy.

In addition, she is a minority business owner as co-owner of One Accord Services a licensed General Contractor, and a Drywall and Metal Framing Subcontractor based in Raleigh North Carolina. Ms. Young is currently preparing to apply to law school in her (nonexistent) free time so that she can be the vanguard of the next generation of MBELDEF legal watchdogs.

Send A Check

If you're interested in donating and would like to send a check,

Send your check to:
Minority Business Enterprise Legal Defense and Education Fund (MBELDEF)
P.O. Box 15323
Washington, D.C. 20003