Seattle, WA–(HISPANIC PR WIRE – BUSINESS WIRE)–May 10, 2004–Washington Mutual was recently named as one of the “Top 10 Companies for Supplier Diversity” by DiversityInc. and the “Top 25 Minority Vendor Programs for Latinos” by Hispanic Magazine.
“At Washington Mutual, we strive to use our successes to better serve neighborhoods, consumers and small- to mid-sized businesses,” said Portia Rugon, Washington Mutual’s manager of supplier diversity. “Our Supplier Diversity program is another example of our overall commitment to supporting the local communities in which we do business and plays an important role in maintaining existing, and fostering new, relationships with minority- and women-owned businesses.”
Washington Mutual’s Supplier Diversity program is part of the company’s 10-year, $375 billion community lending and investment commitment, which has a special emphasis on programs and products that serve people of color and low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. The commitment also targets single-family and multifamily lending, small business and consumer financing, and community investment programs.
In another recent announcement, Washington Mutual was named to Hispanic Magazine’s “Corporate 100: Best Companies for Hispanics” for the third year in a row based on its diversity training and recruitment efforts, as well as its strong Supplier Diversity program. Additionally, the company last month was named “Corporation of the Year” by the Latin Business Association for its efforts to advance the cause of Latino-owned businesses.
“Strong minority vendor programs can truly make a difference by empowering minority- and women-owned businesses to succeed,” Peter Villegas, manager of Emerging Markets for Washington Mutual, who accepted the Latin Business Association award on behalf of the company. “In turn, these businesses often hire in local neighborhoods, thereby improving their economy and making them better places to live and work.”
Washington Mutual’s Supplier Diversity program, which was founded in 1998, has steadily increased the number of diverse vendors and contractors doing business with the company. Its long-term goal is to award 15 percent of supplier-related contract expenses to businesses that are at least 51 percent owned by minorities, women or individuals with disabilities. During 2003, Washington Mutual awarded 14.83 percent of its supplier contracts to companies that qualify for the program, compared to 12.07 percent in 2002 and 11.26 percent in 2001.
About Washington Mutual
With a history dating back to 1889, Washington Mutual is a retailer of financial services that provides a diversified line of products and services to consumers and commercial clients. At March 31, 2004, Washington Mutual and its subsidiaries had assets of $280.77 billion. Washington Mutual currently operates more than 2,400 consumer banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, and financial services offices throughout the nation. Washington Mutual’s press releases are available at http://www.wamunewsroom.com.
Washington Mutual, Seattle
Lisa Lucas, 206-377-6201