Ralph Taylor of Lynwood, Washington, looks white. But after taking a DNA test showing that he is 6 percent indigenous American and 4 percent sub-Saharan African, he began to identify as multiracial and applied for minority-owned business status to win more business from state and federal government contractors.
Taylor’s application was denied, and now he’s suing. . .
The test concluded that Taylor was 90 percent Caucasian, but Taylor considers the results showing his multiracial heritage to be proof that he is a minority. In 2013, he applied for his business, Orion Insurance Group, to be recognized by the state of Washington as being minority-owned.
His application was first rejected by the state’s Office of Minority & Women’s Business Enterprises on the grounds that he was not “visibly identifiable” as a minority. But after he appealed, the Office eventually approved his application before reversing its decision again and ultimately denied him the certification in 2014.
In issuing its decision, the state of Washington dismissed the DNA test, questioning its accuracy. The OMWBE wrote, “The documentation that Mr. Taylor provided was insufficient to prove that he has held himself out to be a member of either [the Black American or Native American] group(s) over a long period of time.” (Read more from “Man Sues to Obtain Minority-Owned Business Status After DNA Test Claims He’s 4 Percent Black” HERE)