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Press Release|September 5, 2023

AGC of California’s Small Business Construction Expo (SBCX) Features Los Angeles World Airports Chief Development Officer Terri Mestas as Keynote Speaker

Small/underrepresented business contractors connect with prime contractors, agencies and stakeholders at premier construction industry event

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Associated General Contractors of California (AGC of California) hosted its annual Southern California Small Business Construction Expo (SBCX) on Friday, Aug. 25, at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, California. Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) Chief Development Officer Terri Mestas headlined the event as the keynote speaker.

“LAWA is committed to creating a positive and measurable impact on the growth and success of small and diverse businesses in LA, and to develop a strong diverse and inclusive workforce community,” said Terri Mestas, chief development officer.  “We are proud to partner with AGC of California and its members as we build our $30 billion capital improvement program with aligned values about diversity and inclusivity,” she added.

Mestas manages a $30 billion budget for the Capital Improvement Program that includes projects such as the Automated People Mover, the new Terminal 9, new Concourse 0, new Cargo Facilities, new Roadways into LAX, Runway and Taxiway Projects, among other projects. She leads a team of dedicated staff members with support from over 450 companies executing work at Los Angeles International (LAX), Van Nuys and Palmdale Airports.

AGC of California’s SBCX connects small/underrepresented business (SUB) contractors who are growing their business with resources and experts from across the state, including representatives from public and government agencies, prime contractors and specialty trade organizations.

Over 40 organizations sponsored booths and shared tips for landing contracts, project forecasts for opportunities and more. AGC of California’s Southern California SBCX is developed in partnership with presenting sponsors BuildOUT California, the California Department of General Services (DGS), Los Angeles World Airports, LA Metro, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, and the Port of Long Beach. Over 445 people registered for the event.

SBCX places special emphasis on making connections between construction industry businesses that are disadvantaged business enterprises (DBE), disabled veteran business enterprises (DVBE), LGBT business enterprises (LGBTBE), minority business enterprises (MBE), small business enterprises (SBE), women business enterprises (WBE), and women-owned small businesses (WOSB).

“SBCX epitomizes the collaboration that drives our industry forward,” said AGC of California Chief Executive Officer Peter Tateishi. “By uniting small/underrepresented business contractors with key stakeholders, we’re not just creating opportunities; we’re fostering a network of innovation, strengthening our trade, and paving the way for future growth. It’s a vital step in ensuring the lasting prosperity of California’s construction landscape.”

AGC of California members Clark Construction, Envision Inglewood Connected, Hensel Phelps, Skanska, and Sully-Miller Contracting Co. sponsored the event along with Turner Construction Co.

The panel session, “Engage with Agencies,” included Olga Mireya López, senior representative, strategic business & construction careers, LA Metro; Veronica Soto, senior advisor for workforce development, Los Angeles World Airports; Wayne Gross, business outreach liaison, DGS; John Arena, business outreach program manager, Metro Water District; and Jennifer Kropke, officer of diversity, equity, inclusion and procurement, to share their insights on engaging with agencies.

 About the Associated General Contractors of California
Since 1920, the Associated General Contractors of California (AGC of California) has worked alongside members to provide advocacy, education, career development, and networking opportunities to experienced and next generation construction and contracting professionals. AGC of California advocates for contractors with state and local governments, while helping members connect with industry leaders through services, innovative programs, and events. Learn more at www.agc-ca.org.

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