Thursday, April 08, 2010

Miriam Singer - Procurement Management


Last night, at the monthly STS Rider's Meeting, Joel Perez announced that the County has extended the deadline for potential paratransit providers to submit bids for an additional two weeks. When asked for a reason, none was forthcoming, but Joel asserted that the decision was made by Miriam Singer, Director of the County's Department of Procurement Management (DPM), not by Transit. He further asserted that he had no idea why the deadline was extended. Some in the audience expressed skepticism. Many wondered why the County's representative to a public meeting was unprepared to explain why the deadline was extended yet again. The blame, such as it was, was placed by Mr. Perez squarely on Ms. Singer

While I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting with Ms. Singer, I have asked around about her, and she has a sterling reputation for integrity, compassion, and professionalism.

Based on her reputation, and the bio posted below, which appears on the County's website, it is my view that despite the suspicions of some who attended the meeting, it is my sense that the reason for the delay was perfectly legitimate, whatever it was. I welcome an opportunity to have a meeting with Ms. Singer at one of our upcoming monthly meetings held by the disability community and will extend an invitation to her to meet with us at her convenience. Perhaps Transit will come to future meetings more prepared, and will stop throwing others "under the bus", so to speak.


Miriam Singer
Director, Procurement Management

Miriam Singer, a twenty-five year veteran of Miami-Dade County, was appointed Director of the Department of Procurement Management (DPM) in March 2005. Prior to this appointment, she served as Acting Director of DPM for six months and Deputy Director for four years. Having joined DPM within the first six months of the Department's formation, Ms. Singer was responsible for implementing the financial, staffing, operational and administrative functions. She successfully implemented a Board approved revenue producing program which has generated in excess of $32 million. The Department is self-supporting and no longer relies on general revenue funding. This has allowed additional general fund support for other service priorities.

Ms. Singer has served the County with distinction in a number of progressively responsible positions since 1982. Prior to working in DPM, Ms. Singer was responsible for restructuring and managing the County's Contract Review and Compliance Division as Assistant Director of the Department of Business Development. In this position, she was charged with compliance management of $1 billion annually in construction, procurement and professional services contracts. Additionally, she has worked for the Miami-Dade Transit Agency, the County Manager's Office, the Department of Justice Assistance and the Miami-Dade Criminal Justice Council.

As Director of DPM, Ms. Singer oversees a staff of 114. She is responsible for executive management and operations of a department responsible for the centralized purchase of goods and services with a workforce of over 30,000 staff serving 2.5 million citizens. DPM awards over $1 billion in contracts annually for 60 County departments. Under her leadership, e-procurement, enhanced competition policies, progressive customer service initiatives, enhanced professional development and certification incentives, and other "best practices" have been implemented to facilitate best value purchases for the public's dollar.

Ms. Singer graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and a Masters Degree in Public Administration. She has led volunteer community and statewide efforts aimed at ensuring equity, fairness and opportunity. Ms. Singer is a past president of the Coalition of Hispanic American Women, founding chair of the Florida Supreme Court Commission on Fairness, a former member of the Judicial Management Council and a past gubernatorial appointee to the Governing Board of the South Florida Water Management District.

Currently, Ms. Singer is a member of the Greater Miami Chapter of the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP), NIGP's National Education and Professional Development Committee, the Florida Association of Public Purchasing Officers and the Institute for Supply Management. Under her leadership, the Department of Procurement Management has been recognized as a the first County in North America to receive the highest form of peer recognition, the NIGP Pareto Award, as well as awards for innovation and best practices from the National Association of Counties (NACO), and a recipient of the National Purchasing Institute's Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award for four years.

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