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Disparity Study Team

The study team for the 2018 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Disparity Study is comprised of ten firms that, considered together, possess decades of experience related to conducting disparity and availability studies:

  • BBC Research & Consulting (prime consultant): Certified SB based in Denver, CO;
  • Ritzman Law (subconsultant): Certified SDB based in Harrisburg, PA;
  • Powell Law (subconsultant): Certified SDB based in Harrisburg, PA;
  • Kairos Development Group (subconsultant): Certified SDB based in Philadelphia, PA;
  • Milligan & Company (subconsultant): Certified SB based in Philadelphia, PA;
  • Always Busy Consulting (subconsultant): Certified SDB based in Pittsburgh, PA;
  • Customer Research International (subconsultant): Certified SB based in San Marcos, TX.;
  • National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) (subconsultant) – Washington, DC;
  • Holland & Knight (subconsultant)– Atlanta, GA;
  • Keen Independent Research (subconsultant) – Wickenburg, AZ.

For an organization chart of the BBC study team and a description of each firm’s project roles, click here.

BBC Research & Consulting (BBC)
BBC is considered the premier disparity study firm in the nation. BBC is a national expert in conducting disparity studies and in helping agencies implement minority- and women-owned business programs. BBC has completed nearly 80 disparity studies for cities, states, government agencies, and other entities all across the country. BBC has provided expert testimony related to disparity studies, minority- and women-owned business programs, and the Federal DBE Program on several different occasions, most recently as part of the successful defense of the California Department of Transportation’s (Caltrans’) implementation of the Federal DBE Program—which was based in large part on a 2007 BBC disparity study—in Associated General Contractors of America, San Diego Chapter v. California Department of Transportation, et al.

Primary contact:
Kevin Williams, Managing Director
BBC Research & Consulting
1999 Broadway, Suite 2200
Denver, Colorado 80202-9750
Phone: 303-321-2547, ext. 231

Ritzman Law - Ritzman Law is a Black American, veteran, woman-owned general practice law firm that specializes in diversity and inclusion in the governmental procurement process. Ms. Dolores Ritzman, Ritzman Attorney, is an active member in good standing of the Pennsylvania Bar Association. As Chair of PennDOT’s DBE Interdisciplinary Review Team, she evaluated the good faith efforts of prime contractors failing to meet the established DBE goals. She made recommendations for approval or disapproval to the Director of the PennDOT Bureau of Equal Opportunity. Ms. Ritzman also redesigned PennDOT’s implementation of the Federal DBE Program to set goals based on objective research and evidence. Moreover, to ensure compliance with diversity and inclusion objectives, she advocated for a comprehensive goal-setting methodology at PennDOT. Her expertise in diversity was recognized when she was appointed to Governor Thomas Wolf's Advisory Council on Diversity, Inclusion, and Small Business Opportunities, and specifically, to the Subcommittee of Inclusion and Certification.

Powell Law - Powell Law has distinguished itself as one of the premier law firms working in the private and public sectors of Pennsylvania. Powell Law specializes in government procurement, government contract compliance, real estate, building construction, public finance, complex business transactions, Right-to-Know Law, supplier diversity, and intellectual property law. Powell Law engages in corporate and commercial law as well as in government law and is the longest-standing, minority-owned corporate and commercial law firm in the history of central Pennsylvania. In 2016, the firm led a disparity study for the Susquehanna Township. It also prepared mentor-protégé programs for organizations in Pennsylvania. Mary Powell, Powell Law Majority Member, serves on the Governor’s subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion for the Department of General Services as well as the Governor’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion for PennDOT.

Kairos Development Group (Kairos) - Kairos is a woman-owned progressive consulting firm based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania that assists organizations to achieve their strategic and research objectives. The firm’s team of experts works alongside its clients to deliver customized solutions to complex problems. Kairos prides itself in doing quality work on time and in an efficient manner. The firm specializes in economic and market research; strategic planning; workforce development; program development; grant management; and project management. For example, Kairos recently worked for the United Way of Greater Philadelphia to provide workshops and training to help small businesses be more successful competing for government contracts. The firm also worked for Passaic County, New Jersey to develop and implement a strategic plan for its Workforce Development Board. Kairos also conducted work for People for People to provide grant writing and business development services.

Milligan & Company (Milligan) - Milligan is a minority, veteran-owned small business based in Philadelphia, PA that has provided a variety of services in the audit and assurance; consulting; and development fields for more than 30 years. Milligan’s Civil Rights and Diversity department provides a broad range of services ranging from assessments, training, research studies, and reviews. The firm is currently engaged to conduct civil rights reviews including implementations of the Title VI, EEO, ADA, and the Federal DBE Programs on behalf of the Federal Transit Administration. Milligan is part of the Global Program Partner’s diversity team, which provides reporting and outreach services for the $6.4B Capacity Enhancement Program at the Philadelphia International Airport.  The firm has also developed and delivered training on the implementation of 49 CFR Par 26 (USDOT Regulations related to the Federal DBE Program) for the National Transit Institute. 

Always Busy Consulting (ABC) - ABC is a Black American woman-owned professional services firm based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The firm was founded on the principle of having a transformative impact on the local community and its various stakeholders and has grown into an organization with a reputation for delivering accurate and insightful results. ABC has become a respected provider of professional consulting services specializing in diversity outreach; minority- and woman-owned business development; community outreach; and economic development program management. ABC has worked with numerous private and public sector organizations on projects ranging from community organization to conflict resolution to facilitating public-private collaborations. Recent clients include the Greater Hill District, the City of Pittsburgh, and the Pittsburgh Penguins.

National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) - The NGLCC is the business voice of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community and is the largest global nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC provides various services on behalf of the LGBT business community including supporting and advocating for opportunities for LGBT-owned businesses; promoting and advocating for broad-based economic advancement of LGBT individuals; working towards implementing pro-business, LGBT-inclusive policies at the federal, state, and local levels of government; and connecting corporate partners with certified LGBT-owned businesses. NGLCC also certifies LGBT-owned business nationwide and maintains the most comprehensive LGBT-owned business certification list.

Holland & Knight - Holland & Knight is a multi‐national law firm and has participated in more than 50 BBC disparity studies. Holland & Knight is the preeminent law firm in the nation with regard to assessing legal issues surrounding disparity studies and small business and minority- and woman-owned business programs. BBC employs Holland & Knight to develop the legal analysis and framework on disparity studies and to consult on legal issues. The firm recently worked with BBC on disparity studies for three San Diego-area government organizations, 11 government organizations in Indiana, WSDOT, ODOT, and the Ohio Turnpike. Holland & Knight also provided substantial litigation support to Caltrans in the agency’s successful defense of its implementation of the Federal DBE Program in the AGC, San Diego v. Caltrans case. The firm is currently working with BBC on disparity studies for the City of Charlotte, IDOT, ITD, LA Metro, and five government organizations in Nevada. The firm is also working with Keen Independent and BBC to conduct a disparity study for the State of Minnesota.

Keen Independent Research (Keen Independent) - Keen Independent is an economic and policy research firm that specializes in conducting disparity studies all across the country. Dave Keen, former BBC Managing Director, helped to develop BBC’s disparity study practice in 1989 and has led disparity studies for more than 80 clients throughout the country. Since starting Keen Independent, Mr. Keen and his staff have worked closely with BBC and Holland & Knight on disparity studies for various government organizations including the City of Madison, the City of Atlanta, the City of Portland, Sound Transit, the Port of Seattle, three San Diego-area government organizations, 11 government organizations in Indiana, and Caltrans. Keen Independent is currently working with BBC on disparity studies for IDOT and the State of Minnesota.

Customer Research International (CRI) - CRI is a Subcontinent Asian American‐owned telephone survey firm based in San Marcos, Texas. CRI has conducted tens of thousands of telephone surveys on more than 35 BBC disparity studies. The firm is accustomed to conducting telephone surveys all over the nation. Sanjay Vrudhula, CRI President, will lead the firm’s efforts on the Commonwealth’s disparity study. Mr. Vrudhula has more than 20 years of experience in sales, marketing, and data processing with particular expertise in the design and implementation of business and consumer databases. CRI recently worked with BBC on disparity studies for ODOT and the Ohio Turnpike. The firm is currently working with BBC on disparity studies for the City of Charlotte, IDOT, ITD, LA Metro, and five government organizations in Nevada.