For more than 40 years, America has designated the month of May as Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. The recognition originated in 1978, when President Jimmy Carter signed a Congressional resolution that designated the first week of May as Asian Pacific Heritage week. Fourteen years later, it was expanded to an entire month and renamed Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Later, the name was changed once again to recognize both Asian American and Pacific Island cultures. The month of May was chosen because of two historic milestones – the immigration of the first Japanese to the US in May of 1843, and the completion of the transcontinental railroad – largely built by Chinese immigrants, in May of 1869. Today, there are more than 22 million Asian Americans – roughly 6% of the US population, who hail from more than 40 distinct Asian American, native Hawaiian and Pacific Island cultures. It is the fastest growing segment of the US population, according to the Census Bureau.
The GMSDC celebrates the many contributions of Asian American owned businesses to the Georgia economy and the GMSDC family. Some of the nation’s finest MBEs, including many who have grown to NMSDC Class IV status, are owned by members of Georgia’s various Asian communities. Nearly 300 of the Council’s certified MBEs are Asian owned, including recipients of prestigious recognition like GMSDC and NMSDC Supplier of the Year Awards, EY Regional Entrepreneur of the Year and Inc. Magazine’s list of America’s 500 fastest growing private companies. The GMSDC’s Asian community transacts billions of dollars in revenues each year and employs tens of thousands of people around the world. As we celebrate these outstanding companies and their many accomplishments, we would like to spotlight a few of the amazing MBEs who are owned by members of the AAPI community in Georgia.
- EK Building Maintenance, dba CleanNet of Atlanta, is a commercial cleaning and facility maintenance firm headed up by Eric Kim. Founded in 1992, EK has been providing highly rated services to an impressive clientele that includes practically every type of facility and nearly every industry category. Appearance matters, and CleanNet of Atlanta cares about the appearance of your facility.
- GMI Group is a green janitorial services company headquartered in Lawrenceville, GA. First launched in 2005 by CEO Kayla Dang, GMI specializes in Creating Healthy Workspaces and promises to render your facility ‘Dang Spotless.’ In addition to providing commercial cleaning and facility maintenance/restoration services, GMI also provides consultation to its clients on sustainability and energy efficiency initiatives that can lower the total cost of facility operation.
- Avacend and Avion Networks. Kanchana Raman is the principal of two distinct MBE firms headquartered in the Atlanta area. Avacend is a consulting and staffing services company that specializes in ‘Enabling Intelligent Enterprise’ through innovative HR solutions. Avion Networks is a global technology firm the provides communications and broadband network solutions for the Telecom and Technology sectors.
This is but a small sample of the diversity and capability of the Asian American businesses who call Georgia home. We do not have space to properly recognize all of the greatness put forth by this community. Please join us in saying ‘thank you’ to the many members of the AAPI community who bring so much to the GMSDC family and to Georgia’s economy, every day. We are proud of our long
association with so many amazing companies and look forward to a bright future ahead. For more information, visit asianpacificheritage.gov.