We are a regionally based, multidisciplinary consulting firm who is primarily focused on the development, training, and certification of Minority and Woman Owned Business Enterprises.

About Us

We provide certification assistance, develop capacity and introduce firms to opportunities to compete for corporate business. We are a dedicated community partner that works to eliminate impediments and barriers in the creation of successful minority-and-women-owned businesses and their ability to compete in a fair and open market. We balance the equation and make the contracting process efficient for both vendors and buyers.

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How We Can Help You

  • In depth responses to your questions regarding the New York State MWBE Certification process

  • 1 on 1 assistance for each individual business registered to our workshops

  • Guidance throughout your application process

  • Procurement assistance to help you secure your first contracting opportunities with the State of New York

  • Assistance setting up your vendor profile with New York State

  • Assistance putting your capabilities statement together

  • Guidance with your industry or commodities codes (NAICS)

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Register For Our Monthly NYS MWBE Certification Assistance Workshops

Diversify-NY, LLC hosts a series of monthly workshops designed to assist potential MWBE’s through the New York State MWBE certification process. Our specially trained staff will provide answers to your questions in addition to an extensive review of your eligibility and application requirements.

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Get Expert Technical Assistance

  • Business development including business formation, state registration, federal and state certifications including MWBE, SBA, VOSB/SDVOSB certification, capability statements, vendor profiles and more.

  • Small business development training; resource development, access to procurement opportunities

  • One Stop Shop access specifically for minority and minority women-owned businesses, networking and marketing and more. We are the SOLE NYS certified technical assistance provider in the region focused on the development of minority and minority women-owned businesses.

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Required Documents

  • Proof of citizenship and gender: Birth records, U.S. Passports, Military Records, Green Cards.

  • Proof of capital contributions: Cancelled checks or bank statements, purchase agreements, proof of equipment purchases.

  • Proof of business activity in NYS: Current contracts, bids, invoices and proof of payments from clients and work in the NYS.

  • Personal and Business Taxes: Complete copies of the most recent personal and business taxes.

  • Professional Background: Owner’s Resumes(s), licenses, permits, certifications.

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MBE Certification

An MBE is a business enterprise in which at least 51% is owned, operated and controlled by citizens or permanent residents who are meeting the ethnic definitions listed below:

  • Black: Persons having origins from any of the Black African racial groups.

  • Hispanic: Persons of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Dominican, Cuban, Central or South American descent of either Native American or Latin American origin, regardless of race.

  • Asian-Pacific: Persons having origins from the Far East, Southeast Asia or the Pacific Islands.

  • Asian-Indian Subcontinent: Persons having origins from the Indian subcontinent.

  • Native American or Alaskan Native: Persons having origins in any of the original peoples of North America.

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WBE Certification

To become certified as a woman owned business, a business must show:

  • All prospective members must provide clear and documented evidence that at least 51% or more is women-owned, managed, and controlled.

  • The business must be open for at least 6 months.

  • Owner must be a U.S. citizen

  • Evidence must indicate that the contribution of capital and/or expertise by the woman business owner is real and substantial and in proportion to the interest owned/

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DBE Certification

The Certification Unit is responsible for certifying Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) firms according to Title 49 Part 26 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is accomplished by a thorough analysis of the application with the supporting documents and on-site interview. Only small business firms that are independently owned and controlled in both substance and form by one or more socially and economically disadvantaged persons are certified. The entire process takes approximately 90 days once a complete application is received. If supporting documentation, signatures, or notarizations are missing, or if additional information is needed, the application is considered to be incomplete. Once certified, the firm will be listed in the NYS Unified Certification Program’s (NYSUCP) Directory of Certified DBEs when updated online every 24 hours.

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SBE Certification

Before you can begin business with the government your business must obtain the proper certifications. Small business certifications are like professional certifications; they document a special capability or status that will help you compete in the marketplace. Unlike permits and licenses, you do not need to obtain certifications to legally operate. However, in order to take advantage of business opportunities, such as government contracts, you may need to obtain some certifications.

Federal, state and local governments offer businesses opportunities to sell billions of dollars worth of products and services. Many government agencies require that some percentage of the procurements be set aside for small businesses. Certifying your business can definitely help you successfully compete for government contracts.

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Rickey Brown
Founder / Principal

Rickey T. Brown is founder and principal of Diversify-NY, LLC, a New York State certified minority business enterprise and technical assistance provider. The firms primary function is to identify, create and promote opportunities that advance minority and minority women-owned businesses specializing in state contracting opportunities. Rickey formally served as the first executive director of the local minority chamber of commerce where many of his diversity initiatives focused on capital investments and development of capital projects for minority-owned businesses.

He currently serves several boards including Onondaga Community College, the Syracuse Industrial Development Association, Housing Visions and Mckenzie Ryan Child Advocacy Center. He serves prominent roles as both community activist and and advocate for minority business affairs throughout the region. A graduate of Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management where he majored in Finance, Rickey has maintained ties to Syracuse University through his work in entrepreneurship.

Eileen Collins
Executive Administrator

Founder and CEO of Admin-On-Call, LLC, Executive Assistant on the Run. Marketing, promoting, selling, networking, and developing community awareness was hindered by the overwhelming daily tasks of keeping the business side of the business functional. Eileen's mission is to help others on their journey to success. She provides executive administrative support to entrepreneurs, small business owners, and home-based businesses through customizing services to effectively meet the needs of her clients.

Amanda Pascall
Program director

Growing up in the southwest of Australia might not have prepared Amanda for the Central New York winters but after moving to Syracuse with her family more than 25 years ago this is where she calls home. For many years Amanda has been involved in local and national grassroots efforts to fight against predatory lending and working for equitable access to affordable, healthy housing. The last 15 years she has worked at Home HeadQuarters as a foreclosure prevention counselor assisting hundreds of CNY residents avoid foreclosure and save their homes. She is excited to help minority business owners take the next step toward MWBE Certification.