Publisher’s Note: Shout out to my readers

By Ronda Watson Barber
OhioMBE Publisher

I advocate for Black businesses every day! Shout out to my readers who support my advocacy!

I challenge the status quo and those who receive tax dollars and don’t inclusively utilize them. Yes, I challenge incompetence. Yes, I call out the perpetrators without FEAR.

My recent columns about the shenanigans in Columbus City Schools Capital Improvements department have resulted in Black businesses advocating for themselves and asking questions. They are asking what they can do. My response is to speak up! The elected board hasn’t held anyone accountable for the continued maltreatment of Black vendors and the incompetent leadership in Operations. Remember their inaction at election time. Not one board member responded to my column about the advertising spending with Capital Improvements. Silence is acceptance.

As director of Capital Improvements, Petty Alex Trevino is upset that his job evaluation is online. He has cut his advertising spending with OhioMBE. OhioMBE notifies readers of upcoming construction projects. Is his decision hurting the publisher of OhioMBE? HELL NO! I won’t accept his adverting dollars in the future. Does his decision impact Black businesses? ABSOLUTELY! Many Black vendors don’t have the time to search for contracting opportunities. OhioMBE delivers bid notices to our subscribers through many outlets, including email, text, and social media. Trevino’s solution is for vendors to visit the CCS website to search for contracting opportunities.

Perhaps he should remember that he works for a public entity that spends tax dollars. I made a public records request on his job performance, and Columbus City Schools forwarded the information. He manages Operation Fix-It for the district. A program he created after the last Columbus City School building was constructed over a decade ago. Local and national media reported on nasty, unsafe, unhealthy school buildings that played a role in a teacher’s strike. I was in the fourth grade at Brentnell Elementary the last time the teacher walked out on strike. I was curious about his job evaluation. He and the bumbling demoted/promoted COO Maurice Oldham met district standards. So why is he upset? Is he abusing his power? His actions directly oppose Columbus City Schools’ claim of diversity and inclusion.

If last year’s performances in Buildings & Grounds, Transportation, and Capital Improvement are acceptable, then the district and the elected board need to revisit its standards. There needs to be a standard of excellence. Black children deserve clean well maintained school buildings. 

Ronda Watson Barber – OhioMBE (August 16, 2022)

Shout out to the vendor who went to district offices’ to question the new advertising policy in Capital Improvements. I greatly appreciate you, Boss Lady! Thanks for your support as I champion for your business to get access to contracting opportunities with the State’s largest public school district with competent respectful professionalism from its staff. I will continue to fight to make those who spend our tax dollars.

Just my thoughts…rwb


Your thoughts...