Global Multicultural Procurement & Sales Support Program
More than 40 years ago, Jo-Ann Butler began a career in minority supplier diversity development as an administrative assistant, then program manager at Chicago United, the precursor of the Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council, the first minority business development council in the United States.
Committed to the concept of working for economic parity, Ms. Butler went on to become the executive director of Northern California Minority Supplier Development Council, expanding corporate membership, corporate minority business programs and increasing minority business opportunities and development initiatives.
Later, as director of Hewlett Packard’s Global Multicultural Procurement & Sales Support Program, she expanded HP’s diversity program to include all U.S. business units. In addition to launching HP’s minority business program throughout Canada, the UK, France, Germany and South Africa, Ms. Butler created the first international minority business database that enabled those businesses to register with HP.
Ms. Butler represented HP as a founding member of Supplier Diversity Europe, a program of the Migration Policy Group based in Brussels, Belgium, where she served as the senior advisor. In that capacity, she created processes and documents to assess status of UK and European corporate supplier diversity programs, including identification of procurement opportunities and areas for minority development programs and initiatives. She created the first supplier diversity database in the UK, Germany and France designed to capture supplier profiles and procurement opportunities in one system, the first to be approved by the European Union’s Data Privacy and Collection Commission. Ms. Butler represented Supplier Diversity Europe at the United Nations Conference on Supplier Diversity. After her retirement from HP, she worked as a consultant to Supplier Diversity Europe in London. Her work in these efforts prompted a letter of recognition from Paul Boateng, member of the British Parliament, to HP Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina, praising Ms. Butler for her efforts.
Ms. Butler was instrumental in the creation of Concordis Advisors with assistance from HP Real Estate and Legal senior management and the chairman, president & CEO of Cushman Wakefield Global Real Estate Solutions. Concordis Advisors, the first U.S. minority business real estate firm, was created to provide real estate services and solutions to HP, manage HP real estate properties throughout the US, and to open the real estate market to other corporate minority business real estate opportunities.
The recipient of numerous awards and recognition, she currently works as an independent supplier diversity consultant working with engagement based on referrals from the Department of Defense. She is the volunteer project manager, overseeing the creation and development of the first community garden in her neighborhood. In addition, she crochets afghan baby blankets that are included in gift baskets for military families stationed at Fort Lewis-McChord Joint Base in Ft. Lewis, Wash.
She is married, with one daughter and three grandchildren.