The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) will host a May 11 workshop in Milwaukee to help minority and women-owned businesses learn about certification as Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) firms. The workshop will also highlight contracting opportunities for the Marquette Interchange Project. WisDOT Deputy Secretary Ruben Anthony, Jr., is calling on all area firms to participate in the workshop. “Governor Jim Doyle is committed to investing a total of $810 million in the Marquette Interchange Project with a strong role for DBE firms and minority and women workers,” stated Deputy Secretary Anthony. “The state of Wisconsin is making many opportunities for area businesses to participate in this project, we are taking these opportunities out to the community, and are asking the business owners and managers to respond.” State Senator Spencer Coggs and State Representative Lena Taylor have been invited to greet workshop participants and talk about their special leadership roles in minority business and labor development for the Marquette Interchange Project. The Marquette Interchange Project is a four-year effort to reconstruct the Marquette Interchange in downtown Milwaukee. Major construction will begin this fall, and preliminary work has already started on Clybourn Street and selected freeway ramps. WisDOT has set high goals for DBE participation on the project. On four contracts totaling $9.5 million this year for preliminary work, WisDOT achieved a cumulative DBE participation rate of 29%. “Governor Doyle and the entire department have been very pleased with the strong participation of DBE and minority firms in the study phases and the preliminary work for the Marquette Interchange Project,” noted Deputy Secretary Anthony. “But we are not finished: we want to continue to set high goals, and we need Milwaukee area businesses to build their capacity and become certified DBE firms so they can bid on future projects.” Logistics for the workshop are as follows: TIME: 6:00 pm — 8:30 pm PLACE: HeartLove Place 3229 N Martin Luther King Drive, Milwaukee The workshop is free, but WisDOT is asking participants to pre-register to provide adequate space and materials. Call WisDOT’s DBE Support Services office at (414) 438-4583 to register for the workshop or get more information.