Valarie J. Cofield is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council (EMSDC).
Since 2014, Cofield has been using her many years working in business development and supplier diversity to spark and facilitate business partnerships between EMSDC’s corporate members and its certified Minority Business Enterprises. A creative thinker with invaluable experience in contract negotiations, strategy development and opportunity identification, Cofield embodies EMSDC’s role as a connector and facilitator for business opportunities and is the consummate diversity and inclusion champion. Cofield is motivated by the desire to position EMSDC as a leader in the industry continuing to prepare MBEs to successfully engage with the supply chains of its corporate and institutional members, while making the case for supplier diversity. She is also focused on ensuring that certified MBEs/diverse suppliers meet the current and future needs of the supply chain and are positioned to bring value and solutions to the procurement process.
Over the last 30 years, Cofield has worked proactively on all sides of the issues surrounding supplier diversity and inclusion, including advocacy at the highest levels of government and industry. In her current and previous positions, she has assisted public entities in implementing economic development initiatives and private companies in developing their supplier diversity business strategies. Prior to joining the EMSDC, Cofield worked as the Diversity and Community Director for INTECH Construction, Inc. and was active with the General Building Contractors Association where she was a member of the Education and Equal Business Access committees. Cofield also worked as a Legislative Specialist for Thelen Reid & Priest, LP where she advocated for reauthorization of funding for the federal Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program. Since 1989, Cofield has worked and championed supplier diversity from all facets of business, industry and government. Her unique understanding of the intersectionality of supplier diversity on the broader community has earned her the reputation as a thought leader.
Cofield currently serves on Governor Tom Wolf’s Advisory Council on Diversity, Inclusion, and Small Business Opportunities. She is a member of the City of Philadelphia’s Rebuild Oversight Board, as well as serving on the Office of Economic Opportunity’s Advisory Council. Cofield serves on numerous Boards and committees but she is most proud of the ten years she served as a Girl Scout Leader. Her many achievements include 2016 SmartCEO Philadelphia Brava Award, DiversityPlus Magazine 2015 Top 30 Supplier Diversity Professionals, and MBN USA 2015 Champions of Supplier Diversity.
Cofield is an alumnus of Franklin & Marshall College, where she earned a Bachelor of the Arts (B.A.).