Friday, Sep 20, 2019
 
search SGN
Friday, Sep 20, 2019
click to go to click to visit advertiser's website


 

 

Speakeasy Speed Test

Cost of the
War in Iraq
(JavaScript Error)
 

 

click to go to advertisers website
 
GSBA receives Chamber of the Year award at national DC confab
GSBA receives Chamber of the Year award at national DC confab
by Nick Ardizzone - SGN Staff Writer

The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is hosting its fifth annual National Dinner: An Evening of Courage! on Friday, November 7 in Washington, DC. Receiving an award along with corporations such as IBM, American Airlines, UPS, and Wells Fargo is Seattle's own Greater Seattle Business Association, which has served LGBT businesses with pride since 1981.

The GSBA will be honored at the black-tie gala as the NGLCC Chamber of the Year for its outstanding work and dedication. The Seattle Gay News spoke with the GSBA's Jerome Bader, director of marketing and external relations, about what receiving the prestigious honor will mean for the organizations the GSBA serves.

"We're very excited about this award," Bader said. "We've always believed that the GSBA is the gold standard for businesses. When you can say you're a member of the GSBA, you know that we expect the highest standards. Every member that we have has to sign a code of ethics that states you're going to be a fair business owner, that you're going to treat your employees with respect, you're going to treat your customers fairly and equally. That in itself sets us apart from other chambers; we say we have a standard, and we uphold it." The GSBA is the largest LGBT chamber in the nation, with over 1,000 members.

Bader credited the award to the GSBA's longstanding relationship with the NGLCC, the GSBA's scholarship program - which this year gave out $137,000 to 37 undergraduate students - and to the unfaltering guidance of Executive Director Louise Chernin.

"A lot of this award is really about Louise's leadership. She's amazing - absolutely amazing, tireless in her effort and her ability to see the big picture," he said. "She really understands the Gay and Lesbian community. She likes to say, 'we're in business, but we're also family, we're also community.' And that brings a lot of very diverse problems and passions and talents to the table, and she's so unique in how she manages to bring all that talent together."

Bader hopes the award will raise community awareness of the GSBA so it can aid more LGBT organizations in the current difficult economic climate. "Any time you're recognized on a national level, you have an opportunity to become more visible," he said. "By leveraging that visibility, you can enhance your organization. Hopefully, people will see that this is an organization that not only is about philanthropy and business and social networking, but it's an outlet for you to be a part of the community, be an activist. & I think that people will realize, through this visibility, that membership is very special."

"When the economy is tough, that's when you need your business association the most," he said. "It's vital that business remain visible. I think Seattle has ridden this wave where small businesses aren't going out of business at the same rate as they are in other places in the nation. & It's vital small businesses do whatever they can to make sure they can be found by a potential customer."

Economic projections hold that the LGBT consumer market will spent $720 billion nationally in the coming year. "That's a lot of potential for businesses," Bader said. "[Business owners] are looking for ways to partner with local chambers that can help get them, hopefully, beyond the pinkwash of wanting LGBT dollars, and actually involved in the community. & I think that comes back to the loyalty factor - the LGBT community is extremely loyal."

As the GSBA enters its year-end membership renewal phase, Bader hopes the NGLCC's recognition will spark interest in its current project, a Gay and Lesbian travel and tourism guide which will be marketed nationally. "We're going to make Seattle and Gay and Lesbian destination," he promised.

Putting the business aside, Bader thanked the GSBA's board of directors - all volunteers - as well as the people who have helped bring the GSBA into the national spotlight.

"This award gives us an opportunity to really sum up our 28 years." Bader said. "All of the people who have had a piece, all of the people who have volunteered, all the people who have put in time and energy and blood and sweat and tears, this award is really about them. It's a tribute to their legacy."

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog


: http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
copyright Seattle Gay News - DigitalTeamWorks 2008

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News