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About Certification

We bridge the gap for contracting activities between women's business enterprises and corporate and government buyers. The Great Lakes Women's Business Council is one of the 14 certifying partner organizations with the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) in Washington, DC.

This certification program was created to meet the need for a national standard of certification for businesses owned, managed and controlled by women who want to market their products and services in America's major markets.

TheWBENC Logo WBENC certification administered through the Great Lakes WBC for women business enterprises is the leading national third party certifications of women business owners. Accepted by thousands of corporations throughout the country and a number of federal and government agencies, your WBENC certification will be an important marketing tool for expanding your company's visibility among decision makers in corporate procurement.

Certification Process Infographic


There are 4 eligibility standards that women-owned businesses must meet in order to become a certified women’s business enterprise.


Fifty-one percent ownership by a woman or women. The applicant must share in all risk and profits commensurate with her ownership interest.

Control and Management

Women must possess the power to direct or cause to direct the management and policies of the business. They must be in active management of the business.

Expertise and Capital

Contribution of capital and/or expertise by women owners to acquire their ownership interest shall be real and substantial and be in proportion of the interest acquired.


The woman owner(s) shall have the ability to perform in her area of specialty/expertise without substantial reliance on males or nonwomen-owned businesses.

Fee Schedule

The certification and re-certification fee structure is based on the average sales for the company for the last three years and is paid annually at time of renewal. This is a non-refundable processing fee :

The above fees include your annual fee for membership which offers you discounts on events. Checks, money orders and credit cards are acceptable forms of payment.

Please make check or money order payable to Great Lakes Women’s Business Council and send all documentation to the following address:

Michigan Applications

Great Lakes Women’s Business Council
33109 Schoolcraft Road (Headquarters)
Livonia, MI 48150
Office: (734) 677-1400
Fax: (734) 677-1465

Indiana Applications

2126 N. Meridian Street,
Ste. 230 Indianapolis,
Indiana 46202
Office: (317) 920-1400
Fax: (317) 920-1401


Qualifying your business as a Certified Women's Business Enterprise (WBE) can increase contracting opportunities with major corporations. Many corporations require that you be certified before they extend an opportunity to you. We provide nationally accepted certification of women-owned businesses in the private sector.

Once certified, our women business enterprises will receive the following benefits:

  • National recognition as a certified WBE by more than 1,000 major U.S. corporations representing thousands of well known brands and government agencies.
  • Access to a current list of supplier diversity and procurement professionals at these same companies.
  • Automatic inclusion in WBENCLink, our National database of 1000+ certified women business enterprises.
  • Use of the WBE Certified Logo on your marketing materials.
  • Invitations to regional & national events, webinars and training.
  • Eligibility to exhibit at national and regional business expos.
  • Qualified certified WBEs are eligible for Women Owned Small Business (WOSB) certification recognized by the federal government.
WBENC Logo   Woman Owned Logo


To remain a certified WBE of the Great Lakes Women's Business Council (Great Lakes WBC), an annual re-certification is required and is supported by a mandatory site visit every 3 years. Please return the re-certification application and required, attachments, documentation, and the non-refundable fee. All fees are based on your company’s average annual gross sales for the past three years.

Click here to learn more about the recertification process

For questions please contact:

Michigan Office
Cherise Gary
Office: 734-677-1400

Indiana Office
Debbie Ervin
Office: (317) 920-1400

Get Certified Now

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