It is the intent of the Mentor/Protégé Program to build an effective, long-term working relationship between established businesses (mentor) and newly-formed minority and/or woman-owned businesses (protégé) who are to benefit from the knowledge and experience of the established business.
Mentor firm is a larger, well established and successful company who is willing to unselfishly commit time and resources to teach, develop, and provide guidance that will help the Protégé firm grow and succeed. Mentors have been successful and are willing to give back to the community.
A Protégé firm is a smaller firm, qualified as a DBE, with a vision and qualification for growth.
The relationship between the mentor and protégé should provide the following:
- Enhance and strengthen the capacity of the DBE to contract with state agencies or to receive subcontracting opportunities from a state contract;
- Foster long-term relationships between the general or prime contractor and DBEs;
- Increase the ability of DBEs to contract with the State or to receive subcontracts under a State contract;
- Realize protégé’s company leaders competency in select areas of identified need; and,
- Protégé’s increased ability to realize long-term stability in their respective field.
The Mentor/Protégé Agreement must state that the program is voluntary, and there is no guarantee that a business contract will result between the team or agency.