Minority business center diverting clients amid Dayton corruption investigation

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – As current and former Dayton employees face federal corruption charges, the Greater Dayton Minority Assistance Center is now diverting clients. 

RoShawn Winburn was the program manager and stands accused of taking over $20,000. 

That money potentially came from the federal government. Federal prosecutors also allege Winburn failed to properly check businesses seeking certain certifications.

2 NEWS caught up with Jessica East, the owner of Dayton Noir, a Marketing & PR firm that used GDMAC to launch her business. 

“The team over there can really help people see– ok, this is what you want to do, here are the steps to make that work for you,” said East. 

East says she worked closely with Winburn. He helped her get technical documents in order. 

“He was always really careful with me as I was filling out forms. And when I was, he was doing things to make sure everything I did was correct,” said East. 

The Ohio Development Agency is now providing assistance to the Minority Business Assistance Center, telling 2 NEWS they have not shut the operation down at a state level.

“We continue to talk with the City of Dayton and work with them as the city works through some staffing issues,” said Dan Bowerman, a spokesperson for the Ohio Development Services Agency.

East says Winburn was very busy and involved with several businesses pursing federal and local bidding contracts. 

The Dayton Entreprenuer Center is also helping clients navigate GDMAC’s closure. 

The state says they consider GDMAC to still be open. The City refuses to comment on what is actually going on. 

Erica Fields, the Director of the Dayton Human Relations Council was emailed and called for this story and did not respond. 

The Ohio Development Services Agency would not comment as to their involvement with the ongoing federal corruption investigation. 

As for Winburn, he has a supporter in former client, Jessica East. 

“My initial reaction was no, they have the wrong guy. There is a typo somewhere. That can’t be true,” said East. 

2 NEWS will follow the court cases scheduled to start in a few weeks. 

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