FCA celebrated its industry-leading commitment to supplier diversity at its 20th annual MatchMaker event through a series of high-impact engagements. 

Community,Corporate Business | September 18 2019

FCA US celebrates 20 years of commitment to supplier diversity at MatchMaker event

FCA US continued its industry-leading commitment to supplier diversity by hosting its 20th annual MatchMaker event at its Auburn Hills headquarters last week.

More than 250 minority-, women-, veteran- and LGBT-owned businesses attended the two-day event where they took advantage of free business seminars and various networking engagements. 

“MatchMaker has been a flagship component for our award-winning supplier diversity program for 20 years,” said Mark Stewart, Chief Operating Officer, FCA – North America. “It is a powerfully effective program based on the very simple idea that an automaker can extend the economic impact of its business and create a supply base that mirrors our diverse customer base.”


FCA celebrated its industry-leading commitment to supplier diversity at its 20th annual MatchMaker event .

Since 1983, the Company has purchased nearly $80 billion from minority-, women- and veteran-owned suppliers. This number is likely to grow even larger following this year’s event that was attended by more than 3,000 people.

Among those in attendance this year were business leaders from the neighborhoods surrounding FCA’s new assembly plant on Mack Avenue. The facility on the east side of Detroit is the first new assembly plant to be built in the city in 30 years.

Detroit business owner Rhonda Rowe meets with Ron Stallworth FCA External Affairs (left); Mark Stewart, Chief Operating Officer, FCA – North America (center) and Scott Thiele Head of Purchasing, FCA – North America and Head of Supply Chain, FCA – North America (right).

One of those local business leaders was Rhonda Rowe, who once worked at the Mack Avenue Engine Complex, and is now the owner and managing member of Rowe Trucking LLC.

For the past 12 years, she has led the heavy construction material hauling company and, this past winter, was once again working at the engine plant site. 

But instead of working inside the plant, trucks from her company helped haul away the berms along St. Jean Street. The berm removal was part of the larger project to build a new assembly plant at the former Mack Avenue Engine Complex.

The intrepid entrepreneur appreciated the opportunity to take part in the free business seminars and access to a wide variety of businesses. 

“It has been very informative. The classes were very good, the matchmaking and networking have been very good,” said Rowe, as she scanned the tables staffed with a variety of business owners with whom she was hoping to connect with and possibly do business with. 

“I am looking forward to getting more business. I have grown some, but I want to continue to grow,” Rowe added.

Edward Cardenas

Hello from the Motor City! I’m Edward Cardenas and I’m multimedia editor for FCA US. As a lifelong Detroiter, I have been surrounded by the automotive industry. I’ve had members of my immediate and extended family work in the industry. I’ve covered it as a journalist and advocated for it
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Hello from the Motor City! I’m Edward Cardenas and I’m multimedia editor for FCA US. As a lifelong Detroiter, I have been surrounded by the automotive industry. I’ve had members of my immediate and extended family work in the industry. I’ve covered it as a journalist and advocated for it as a communications professional. I have also experienced the thrills of the industry while riding in a race car at nearly 200 miles per hour. Having this breadth of experience, I look forward to drawing upon my experiences to bring a wide range of stories, photos and videos about Chrysler, FIAT and Alfa Romeo to FCA Digital Media. When I’m not covering my brands, I’m spending time with my wife and two boys.