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Media Release: DPS Honors Women’s History Month by Focusing on Business Diversity All Year

A look inside the Business Diversity Office at Denver Public Schools: an interview with Director Murugan Palani


Denver Public School’s Director of Business Diversity, Murugan Palani has been celebrating Women’s History Month every month, through the year long the active contribution of women in the greater Denver area. Palani leads the effort to make a women-led Business Diversity Office, located at the Acoma Campus, and ensure that strong female business leaders and community organizers have their time to shine.


“That’s the reason we are here,” says Director of Business Diversity, Murugan Palani, “to ensure there is equity, transparency, and fairness within bond construction spending.”

This effort to highlight female voices was a part of the feedback Palani and others received in the last bond cycle for DPS in 2020. It’s Palani’s goal that the voices of the voters, particularly women, are heard and included in each part of the process to build better schools.


Palani uses his role in the office to oversee that all spending, including purchases of $50,000 or more, is extremely intentional and equitably following the intention of the voters and community. Pulani also ensures that the Business Diversity office provides equal and practical opportunities for women and minority owned businesses for these major contracts. 

By the end of 2022, Palani’s team is expected to have had 30% of the 2020 bond allocated toward contracting with Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises (MWBE). As Director Palani says, “We would like our supplier base to be reflective of our student population”


In addition to equitable hiring, the Business Diversity Office hosts monthly meetings for minority and women-owned businesses interested in partnering with DPS. Every quarter, there are informal coffee chats where small business owners can chat with DPS’ Planning, Design, and Construction team. 


“Historically, women owned and minority owned businesses have faced many barriers to entry in working with Denver Public Schools, and we’re here to educate and support small women and minority-owned businesses and remove barriers to entry and help them through the process to become successful.”


For more information about our bond, and to follow our construction projects, visit our website: bond.dpsk12.org

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