Nashville International Airport > Business Diversity Development > Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

A: Certification is the process through which MNAA examines the ownership and control of the businesses seeking designation as a Small Minority or Woman-Owned Business Enterprise (SMWBE) the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority’s local certification program or as a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE)  a Statewide Federal Funded program. 

The certification process requires a thorough investigation of the company's owner including, but not limited to, financial statements, by-laws, charter, stock certificates, lease agreements, salaries of owners, number of employees, licenses/authorities etc.

  • All business seeking certification must be already established and have a business license.
  • Businesses must be ready, willing and able to provide the product or service as described.
  • The firm must meet ownership criteria.
  • The firm must be willing to participate in annual reviews and updates as required.
  • An On-Site Visit will be performed as part of all firms seeking certification.

Within the MNAA -SMWBE certification program, firms are certified in one of the following classification:

  • SBE  – Small Business Enterprise (Small Male All Other)
  • MBE  – Minority Business Enterprise (Minorities  Male and Female)
  • WBE – Women Business Enterprise (Non Minority Female)

The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA) office of the Business Diversity Development (BDD) has two options when seeking certification.






To promote, encourage and stimulate participation of the Airport’s local Small, Minority and Woman-Owned Business Enterprises (SMWBE).  SMWBE firms must be a for-profit business, as defined in 49 CFR, Part 26. To obtain a SMWBE Certification Application go to





MNAA partners with the Tennessee Uniform Certification Program (TNUCP) to ensure economic participation in contracting opportunities created by FAA financial assistance programs for Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBE) or Airport Concessionaire Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (ACDBE).  Both DBE/ACDBE firms must be a for-profit business, as defined in 49 CFR, Part 26.


To obtain a TNUCP-DBE/ACDBE Certification Application go to if your firm is located within our 16-MSA counties served, you will automatically qualify for SMWBE certification.



Q: Is there a cost to become certified?
A: No. There is no cost.

Q: How long does it take to become certified?
A: On the average, it takes up to 90 days to process a certification application provided all required documents and complete answers to all questions have been submitted.

Q: Will an incomplete certification application be processed?
A: No. Incomplete application will not be reviewed until a complete application is submitted. It is important to submit all required information and answer all questions accurately and completely.

Q: Is there a geographic location requirement for SMWBE certification?
A: Yes. Firms seeking SMWBE certification must be located and miantain a home office within the State of Tennessee.

Q: Is there a geographical location requirement for DBE/ACDBE certification?
A: No. As long as the firm is located within the state of Tennessee.

If your firm is located outside the state of Tennessee you must be certified in your home state first, before seeking certification within the state of Tennessee.  If your firm is certified in your home-state and wish to apply for Interstate Certification, visit MNAA’s website at to apply for certification.

Q: How long does certification last?
A: The certification is valid until the firm is deemed decertified by MNAA. All certifications are required to be renewed annually on the anniversary date.  Renewal packets are sent by MNAA  45-days in advance of the annual certification/expiration date.


Q: Does the Metropolitan Nashville Airport accept reciprocity by other entities?

A: Yes. MNAA accepts reciprocity from the TNUCP.  Visit MNAA’s website at to apply for certification.


Q: Where Can I Verify or View A Copy of the SMWBE Directory of Certified Businesses?
A: Visit MNAA’s website at Click on the SMWBE the directory to view MNAA's SMWBE directory.


Q: Where Can I Verify or View A Copy of the DBE/ACDBE Directory of Certified Businesses?
A: Visit MNAA’s website at

Click on the TNUCP listing.


Q: Do I Have To Be Certified To Do Business With The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority?
A: No. A business is not required to be certified to do business with MNAA.  However, any work performed as a prime contractor or subcontractor will not be credited as meeting the established contract goal.

Q: Who Should I Contact For Assistance With Certification Questions?

A: Certification questions can be emailed to


Q. What If My Application/Certification Is Denied Or Revoked?

A: The firm has one of the three options:

      1. Request an informal appeal hearing within 30-days of receipt of denial letter.
      2. Waive informal hearing and make a written appeal submission within fifteen days of receipt of denial letter.
      3. Do not request a hearing or make further submissions and allow the determination decision to stand. The decision is good for one year and the firm is not eligible to apply for certification for one full year.




MNAA Business Diversity Development

One Terminal Drive, Suite 501

Nashville, TN 37214