Small Business Person of the Year Featured

9:56am EDT July 22, 2002

His nominator says says it best.

“A number of people see themselves accomplishing the American Dream when they decide to come to the United States from a foreign country. But not many see their dreams come true. Dale S. White Sr. is one who can say he is living out the American Dream.”

These are the words of Glenn C. Clevenger, executive director of the Cincinnati Local Development Co, and they speak volumes of White, a native of India, who spent more than 15 years learning the construction trade in Ohio’s Queen City before founding his own firm there in 1990. Today, White’s firm, D.A.G. Construction Co. Inc., is said to be among the most successful and fastest growing minority-owned businesses in Cincinnati.

White used his personal savings to start his company, which he initially operated out of his home with the help of two employees. Within a year, he’d moved D.A.G. into an office building and, by 1997, D.A.G. had a building of its own. Last year, White’s company boasted 46 employees in its Cincinnati office and another seven in a Columbus satellite office.

D.A.G has done projects for Proctor & Gamble, Fifth Third Bank and the University of Cincinnati, among others.

“In the cutthroat business of development and construction, it is rare to find a contractor that is not only fair and honest, but also delivers a quality product,” says Thomas Canter, director of construction for the Ohio Presbyterian Retirement Services Development Corp., for whom White has also done work.

White serves on the Equal Business Opportunity Committee for the City of Cincinnati, the Career Resource Network Board and the Cincinnati Minority Supplier Development Council’s mentoring board. He is active in community projects and activities including the Boy Scouts, a soup kitchen, Cincinnati’s Recreation Commission Youth Softball and troubled teens.

“Dale established D.A.G. Construction Co. Inc. as a leader in the community by being a mentor and patron,” Clevenger says.

White was named Contractor of the Year by the City of Cincinnati’s park division in 1993 and earned recognition as the Regional Construction Firm of the Year from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency in 1998. White received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the OMI College of Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati in 1998.

“When it comes to significant, dedicated efforts in the field of construction [and] construction management in the small business community, there are few individuals who can match Dale,” Clevenger says. “If one had to name an individual who epitomizes overall dedication to the growth [of] small business, it would have to be Dale S. White Sr.”