KU News Release

April 7, 2011
Contact: Joe Monaco, University Communications, 785-864-7100

KU to participate in seminar on doing business with the public sector

More Information

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas will participate in a seminar designed to help private sector firms do business with the public sector at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, April 14, at the Eldridge Hotel in Lawrence.

Hosted by the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, the workshop is designed to help local business owners learn how to navigate the city, county and educational procurement systems.

KU will be represented by Barry Swanson, who serves as interim associate vice provost for operations/chief procurement officer. Other confirmed participants include Jackie Waggoner, purchasing director for Douglas County; Alan Landis, purchasing specialist for the city of Lawrence; Frank Harwood, chief operations officer-administrative support for USD 497; and Mike Lewis, chief financial officer for Haskell Indian Nations University.

“This is an opportunity for our local businesses to talk directly with procurement experts from the public sector,” Swanson said. “I’m especially excited to discuss recent changes that will make it easier for the university to do business with local merchants. We want to show attendees how they can do business with public sector organizations like KU.”

In fiscal year 2010, KU’s Purchasing Services unit purchased more than $13.5 million in goods and services from hundreds of local businesses. These include companies from nearly every industry sector, including construction, manufacturing, printing, information technology and accounting.

From 2007 to 2010, Purchasing Services implemented changes to simplify the procurement process for local businesses. The changes included allowing campus departments increased access to the open market for small purchases and developing more KU-specific contracts instead of making local companies utilize statewide contracts. These changes were facilitated in part thanks to legislation KU supported in the 2010 Kansas Legislature. For details, visit www.purchasing.ku.edu.

The event is open to the public. Cost is $15 for chamber members and $20 for nonmembers. Reservations may be made online at www.lawrencechamber.com through 5 p.m. April 12.

The Lawrence Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit organization that promotes and enhances the economic vitality of Lawrence and Douglas County. The chamber is the leading advocate on issues that affect the economic well-being of the business community.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

kunews@ku.edu | (785) 864-3256 | 1314 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045

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