Detroit Public Schools recognizes Top Suppliers at third annual 100 Top Supplier Conference

Detroit Public Schools on Thursday, December 12, held its third annual Top 100 Supplier Conference, focusing on a theme of “Bold Innovation for Children.”

The event, which highlighted supplier excellence and fiscal responsibility, was the third annual presentation to top suppliers by DPS’ Office of Procurement & Logistics, as well as members of the district’s executive leadership team including Emergency Manager Jack Martin, Chief Financial and Administrative Officer William Aldridge, Superintendent of Academics Karen Ridgeway and Chief Procurement and Logistics Officer Dr. Tracy Joshua.

“We value the support of our Top Suppliers during the redesign of our district and its educational programs,” said Dr. Joshua.  “We remain committed to our Suppliers.  Many have partnered with us and brought new ideas and innovation to us while also helping us reduce our costs.  It is a journey and many suppliers are traveling with us to deliver exceptional goods and services to support the District providing the highest level of education for all the students that we serve.”

“The relationship that DPS maintains with its supply base is critical to the district’s ongoing efforts to re-imagine how we do business,” said Martin. “We are counting on each and every supplier to give us not only their best prices, but more importantly their best quality work and their best, most innovative thinking.”

The following are the third annual Top Supplier Recognition Awards:


Top Supplier Award: Partnership & Building Relationships

Company:  Success for All

Reason for Nomination:

Success for All has helped DPS to achieve openness, creativity, agility and resiliency by developing a long term vision with trust among partners. Success for All is a whole-school reform strategy rolled out in select DPS schools, that features research proven tools, cooperative learning, and collaborative leadership for continuous improvement.

In the District’s most recent benchmarks, there has been a high increase in reading performance in elementary students. The program has provided a positive impact on climate and culture in the buildings, as well as an increase in student engagement.  SFA provided all curriculum materials at no cost to the District during the implementation of the program, and at each school provided free training and support during the first year of program implementation. SFA has also provided funding support for District staff.  SFA has exhibited a true partnership and benefit to DPS.


Top Supplier Award: Student Excellence

Company:           DAPCEP

Reason for Nomination:

Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program applies best practices, as well as teaching and learning strategies to ensure that students participate in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics activities and experiences. DAPCEP has been active in DPS since 1976 and shown a strong commitment to our students and Detroit’s educational community. They are steadfast in their efforts to support student learning through their In-school and Saturday STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) programs. Their program has made learning interesting and relevant for students.

Top Supplier Award: Innovation & Technology

Company: Sentinel Technologies Inc.

Reason for Nomination:

Sentinel Technologies Inc. was recognized for outstanding performance in planning and leading the Network Hardware Refresh project for the DPS data center and central offices.  This project involved the supplier working many nights and weekends to ensure that there were no disruptions to the District’s critical daily network operations.  The $2.4 million project was completed on time and within budget.  This E-rate funded contract has prepared the District’s core network and data center for another decade of technology challenges.


Top Supplier Award: Unsung Hero

Company: National Council of Jewish Women

Reason for Nomination:

The National Council of Jewish Women has been steadfast in their support of the Children at Detroit’s Coleman Young Elementary School. The organization has been volunteering for eight  years.

They are faithfully in the building the third Thursday of every month.  They read to students each classroom, have donated countless books for use in schools, and donated books for students to take home.   Principal Melissa Scott said, “We asked them to help organize the library and they built us a new one in conjunction with Detroit Pistons and Farm Bureau!”  They have donated over 200 pairs of shoes and numerous items of clothing this year.

Their volunteers work tirelessly tutoring students in reading and writing skills, working consistently with the same students each week.  “This list is in no way exhaustive… is only an example of the fine work that The National Council of Jewish women are doing for our schools.  They consistently  go above and beyond, never seeking fame or recognition.  They are just trying to make things better for the children of Detroit Public Schools,” Scott said.


Top Supplier Award: Professional Services Excellence Award

Company:  OneSight

Reason for Nomination:

OneSight is an organization that provides sustainable access to quality vision care and eyewear.  OneSight provides a vision wellness benefit to DPS students through the See to Achieve program.  For the past 15 years, students have been provided with eye care and eyewear through temporary Optical Clinics. This service is at no cost to the student. Of the 1,289 students that participated in the spring clinic, 85% needed glasses. They have offered great service, cost savings to DPS parents and overall wellness that benefits the students of DPS.


Top Supplier Award: Operational Excellence

Company: Hercules & Hercules

Reason for Nomination:

Hercules & Hercules is a diverse supplier that has been one of the District’s facilities providers for more than 15 years. They are steadfast in ensuring they provide quality goods and services at all times. When DPS has faced financial challenges, Hercules & Hercules continued to provide quality services. The company has used DPS schools for demonstrations, donated equipment, kept fair and consistent market prices, and participated at the school and District level in Academic enrichment programs.


Supplier Excellence of the Year Award (Performance Driven)


Reason for Nomination:

 In June of 2013, was awarded business as DPS’s online auction service provider. had abundant experience at doing online auctions at closed schools, as well as experience with surplus warehouses.  The company was nominated and given the Excellence of the Year Award not only because of their experience, but because of a commitment to a “turn-key” approach and documented processes to support their solutions.   They are working tirelessly to ensure that the DPS surplus auctions are a success.  Always looking to improve their process, they have begun assisting DPS with recommending reserves to consider based on their knowledge and research.  None of this research work, which is considerable, is specifically stated in the contract, but they are demonstrating that they are committed to continuous improvement and bringing real value to their customers.

Top Supplier Award: Academic Excellence

Company:   Scholastic

Reason for Nomination:

Scholastic provides the District with a guided reading program which supports a comprehensive reading program by integrating guided instruction, assessment and independent practice into the classroom. Scholastic has shown outstanding growth by working beyond the call of duty to support schools and the roll out of the guided reading program. The program has provided an innovative approach to learning, which makes the educational experience interesting and enriching for students. Scholastic has been able to identify the District’s needs and implement creative ways to provide immeasurable support.


Executive Choice Awards

Company: United Auto Workers of America and Ford Motor Company

Reason for Nomination:              

The UAW leads multiple initiatives throughout the District to support academic achievement, safety and a holistic education experience for DPS students.  This year alone, the UAW is partnering with the American Football Coaches Association’s National Child Identification Program and Ford Motor across the country to provide fingerprint ID kits to tens of thousands of families.  Detroit Public Schools is receiving 50,000 kits for DPS students.  This program is designed to assist parents and law enforcement for quick reference in the event that an emergency occurs.  In addition, the UAW, in partnership with Ford Motor Company Fund and the DPS Foundation, donated over $500,000 to ensure that every student in grades K-8 would have the opportunity to play in an organized sport and that every DPS elementary and middle school could offer arts/music programs.

Executive Choice Awards

Company: General Motors Corporation

Reason for Nomination:              

General Motors Corporation has been a great supporter and partner of Detroit Public Schools for many years. Through their donations to the DPS Foundation, they have raised over a quarter of a million dollars for Detroit Public Schools through various fundraising efforts, including an auction for the 2011 Chevrolet VOLT.  In addition, the District received the necessary funds from the corporation to enable the Cass Tech Band to perform in Washington D.C. Dan Akerson personally made donations through the Dan Akerson’s Blue Earth Foundation and the GM Employee Foundation to help support several DPS initiatives, including the partnership with the Morning Side Community and other suppliers and the  Lear Corporation’s support of the J. E. Clark Preparatory Academy School.




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