Thursday, July 14, 2016

Business Connect: Introducing the GFLGLCC’s Exclusive Referral Program

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

In an effort to continue to enhance the value provided to its members, the GFLGLCC - Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce rolled out some new benefits on June 1. One key item is the exclusive “Business Connect” program -- designed to facilitate strategic connections between members who share common interests and objectives.

To date, the GFLGLCC’s efforts related to connecting members has largely been focused on utilizing the website and events such as monthly mixers and quarterly luncheons. While these provide a “passive platform” through which members can meet and connect, the new Business Connect program takes a more direct “hands-on” approach.

Eligible members interested in participating in the program will first personally meet with the President / CEO of the Chamber or one of its Board Members to identify their business goals and objectives, their ideal client type and their industry focus. That, along with other key drivers will then be analyzed in the context of the GFLGLCC member base to determine the strategic relationships that makes the most business sense. From there, personal introductions are made between members.

To demonstrate exactly how the program will work, consider this fictional example: an eligible member who provides a line of all natural, organic toiletries is interested in expanding business. During the initial planning meeting, it is decided that the best opportunities to grow their business through the Chamber are via hotels and resorts in the area.

With 30+ hotel and resort members at the Chamber, the focus shifts towards identifying those that could mutually benefit from an introduction. It is concluded that an email will be sent to all 30+ hotel and resort members from the Chamber on behalf of the member, followed up with phone calls to a short list of 10 that have the most promise.

How do we arrive at this short list? By considering things like the ability of local management to make purchasing decisions for in-room amenities or gift shop inventories, any “intelligence” related to change that’s happening or anticipated that could result in a requirement for new product options, etc.

Once the 10 have been identified, the goal is to ultimately facilitate an in-person introduction with as many of them as possible. This might occur at one of the monthly mixers, at a quarterly luncheon, at some other local event or at a brief meeting scheduled specifically for the purpose of a meet and greet.

The example doesn’t end there! Through the analysis, let’s say that there are also two hotel management and consulting company members identified. By facilitating an introduction to those two members, additional opportunities may open up via their networks!

As is demonstrated by the specificity of that fictional example, all program details will be custom tailored to each individual member that goes through the program. Great care will be taken to make meaningful introductions that have the potential to benefit both sides. For this reason, the specific number of introductions and approach to facilitating the connections will vary from member to member.

The new program, which is still in the pilot phase, will be offered to its Corporate level members and above as part of their standard membership benefits. For more information and to join the GFLGLCC, please visit www.gogayfortlauderdale.com/ or contact the GFLGLCC at 954-523-3500.

The GFLGLCC is the exclusive Broward County affiliate of the NGLCC - National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. Their mission is to promote business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community; be an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality and to promote tourism with a unified approach by working with appropriate and related organizations.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Help The GFLGLCC Match $25,000 to Raise $50,000+ #OrlandoStrong

For Immediate Release


THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES TITO'S HANDMADE VODKA PLEDGES TO MATCH $25,000 TO RAISE $50,000 PLUS TO ASSIST THOSE EFFECTED BY THE ORLANDO TRAGEDY 
The GFLGLCC - Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce board and staff were shocked by the horrific event at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando early Sunday June 12. 

On Monday morning, I received a phone call from Grant Portier, the Florida Market Manager of Tito's Handmade Vodka. Last Summer Tito's was one of our sponsors for the NGLCC Welcome Reception which we hosted. It was a great event with 900+ in attendance. 

Monday's call was to offer condolences to the LGBTQ community and to ask how they could best help our neighbors in Orlando. Tito's Handmade Vodka proposed matching donations up to $25,000 to help those affected by Sunday's tragic shooting in Orlando. 

Grant told me that he and the company recognize and appreciate the support they receive from the LGBTQ community. The one question they had was which organization would be best equipped to facilitate the donation. Without hesitation, I contacted our community partner Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida. Within several hours, we had a solid commitment from Tito's Handmade Vodka.

Amy Lukken, head of the philanthropic arm of Tito's stated "All of our family here at Tito's Handmade Vodka are heartbroken over the cowardly act that occurred at Pulse Night Club.  We are responding the only way our family, friends, and fans know how to and that is with love. We desire a world free of hate for all mankind and will continue to support our LGBTQ families. We are making a contribution to Equality Florida and are asking you to join us in donating to them as well.  Tito's will share the love and match dollar for dollar up to $25,000."

It gets better.

Southern Wine & Spirits (they are the local distributors of Tito's Handmade Vodka) has also committed to matching funds collected from their employees.  All employee contributions, as well as Southern's match, will go directly to help the victims and their families via Equality Florida.

The GLFGLCC is proud to work with companies like Tito's Handmade Vodka and organizations like Equality Florida. Please join us and help those in need by clicking here In the comment box, put "Tito's match", so they can be sure to double your dollar.

The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn at Keith@gflglcc.org  

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Exclusive LGBT Wedding Resource Guide: Just Vows - Love is Love

For Immediate Release

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES EXCLUSIVE LGBT WEDDING RESOURCE GUIDE: JUST VOWS - LOVE IS LOVE PARTNERSHIP WITH BLACK-TIE PUBLISHING 

Today marks the 1st anniversary of the historic day when marriage equality became law in Florida. The GFLGLCC - Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that we have partnered with Black-Tie Publishing to produce our exclusive LGBT Wedding Resource Guide: Just Vows - Love is Love, focused on Broward County.


 
According to the latest US Census, Fort Lauderdale has the highest number of same-sex couple households in the U.S.  Neighboring cities of Wilton Manors and Oakland Park are in the top ten. contributing to our local demographic is a huge wedding destination industry.

Our Wedding Resource Guide will assist LGBT couples looking for “gay welcoming” companies as they plan their wedding.  Our guide is a perfect way for your business to connect with the LGBT demographic. The guide will feature reception sites, restaurants, photographers, event professionals, officiants, health and beauty,  realtors, attorneys, insurance companies, hotels, florists, caterers and more! 

Surveys say that 24,248 same sex couples living in Florida will opt to marry during the next 3 years. If you're interested in reaching this huge market, contact Nancy Feller or Stephanie Bosco-Luca of Black-Tie Publishing. You can reach them at 954-472-6003 or at nancy@justvows.com.


The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate
organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn at Keith@gflglcc.org  

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

GFLGLCC PARTNERSHIP WITH EQUALITY FLORIDA LAUNCHED


For Immediate Release

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES ANOTHER BUSINESS FOR EQUALITY PARTNERSHIP WITH EQUALITY FLORIDA                                        

Contact: Keith Blackburn
Keith@gflglcc.org

The GFLGLCC is proud to announce a new partnership with Equality Florida's Another Business For Equality initiative, which spotlights pro-equality businesses that maintain and promote LGBT inclusive nondiscrimination policies and that support local and statewide nondiscrimination laws. 
 
By doing so we will improve Florida's reputation as a welcoming and inclusive place to live, work and visit. All GFLGLCC members will have the $50 administration fee waived when they participate in the program.
 
"We are hopeful our partnership with the Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce becomes a model statewide. We look forward to working together to increase the voices, visibility and influence of pro-equality business who share our commitment to ending LGBT discrimination." -Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida.

The Benefits of Another Business for Equality Membership:

Easy to Use Mobile Directory

Your business will be part of this smart phone friendly mobile directory - available free to the public and our more than 200,000 supporters.

Door-to-Door Map Features

A quick search will provide a list of pro-equality businesses with mapped directions to your front door.

Window Sticker

A handy window sticker displaying the GFLGLCC Logo along side the AB4E Logo gives you added visibility for locals and visitors.

Social Media Support

With more than 200,000 supporters, a huge email database and a huge social media presence, we are able to get the directory into the hands of a well-networked universe of motivated supporters.
 
We encourage all of our member businesses and corporate partners to participate in this initiative. Please click this link and register today: http://www.ab4e.org/AB4EBiz713
 
This is a GFLGLCC member benefit, so if you're not yet a member of the GFLGLCC, please contact us today!

The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn atKeith@gflglcc.org  


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

GFLGLCC and Equality Florida Join Forces in Broward County for "Another Business for Equality" Partnership

For Immediate Release

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES ANOTHER BUSINESS FOR EQUALITY PARTNERSHIP WITH EQUALITY FLORIDA                                        


Contact: Keith Blackburn
Keith@gflglcc.org

On the heels of the huge victory in the Supreme Court last week, we must all take time to congratulate our community for all of their hard work and dedication. Everyone made a contribution, but the momentum really built when our allies and corporate America joined in. Together, we turned the tide and at the end, the majority of Americans were behind us.

The NGLCC – National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, along with our chamber and 41 other LGBT chamber affiliates, Equality Florida and countless other organizations have all worked hard to make this happen.

In March of this year, the GFLGLCC joined the NGLCC and 379 organizations to become part of the Amicus Brief, which urged the Supreme Court to support marriage equality on the basis that “Employers are better served by a uniform marriage rule that gives equal dignity to employee relationships,” reads the brief, filed by global law firm Morgan Lewis. “Allowing same-sex couples to marry improves employee morale and productivity, reduces uncertainty, and removes the wasteful administrative burdens imposed by the current disparity of state law treatment.”

Our work isn’t over yet. In Florida and 27 other States, it is still legal to fire someone because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. In addition, we face legal discrimination in housing and in many cases; we can be refused goods and services because of who we are. This is obviously unacceptable and must change. What amazes me is that many people don’t realize this. In recent polls, 80% of Americans believe that it is illegal to fire someone because they are LGBT.

ENDA, the Employment Non Discrimination Act would provide basic protections from job discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. It must become law.  While there have been multiple versions, none have been approved by our congress. In the latest version, passed by the US Senate almost 2 years ago, small business with less than 15 employees, military and religious organizations were exempt. 

We need ENDA to become law, without any exceptions. As it stands now, anyone in America can get married in the morning and if they live and work in one of the 28 states without protections (Including Florida), they can be fired that same day. That doesn’t sound very American, does it?  We must join together, using the momentum we've gained to ensure that this injustice ends with equality for all. 

The GFLGLCC is proud to announce a new partnership with Equality Florida's Another Business For Equality initiative, which spotlights pro-equality businesses that maintain and promote LGBT inclusive nondiscrimination policies and that support local and statewide nondiscrimination laws. By doing so we will improve Florida's reputation as a welcoming and inclusive place to live, work and visit. All GFLGLCC members will have the $50 administration fee waived when they participate in the program.

The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn at Keith@gflglcc.org  

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES JIM ALBRIGHT HAS JOINED THE STAFF

For Immediate Release

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES JIM ALBRIGHT HAS JOINED THE STAFF
Named Director of Marketing and Membership                                            
Jim Albright

Contact: Keith Blackburn
954-523-3500 Keith@gflglcc.org

Fort Lauderdale, FL: The GLFLGCC - Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that Jim Albright has joined the staff as the Director of Marketing and Membership. 


Jim was born and raised in Northeastern Ohio near Akron, Ohio.  He graduated from Kent State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.  Jim moved to Greater Fort Lauderdale in 1997. Prior to beginning career in Marketing and Advertising, he worked as Retail Manager for 10 plus years. For the past 15 years, he worked for local LGBT publications including Hotspots Magazine.  In 2014, Jim moved to San Diego California California for a year to assist a friend market her business. Missing South Florida, he returned several months ago. Currently, Jim lives in Pompano Beach, with his partner. Jim has been active in the LGBT community for many years and looks forward to expanding the GFLGLCC.

The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn 954-523-3500

Friday, March 27, 2015

THE GFLGLCC ANNOUNCES THE APPOINTMENT OF 3 NEW BOARD MEMBERS

For Immediate Release 

Contact: Keith Blackburn
954-523-3500 Keith@gflglcc.org 


March 27, 2015


THE GFLGLCC- Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce ANNOUNCES THE APPOINTMENT OF 3 NEW BOARD MEMBERS

Fort Lauderdale, FL: The GLFLGCC - Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the appointment of 3 new board members.  They are Mark Budwig of S.MARK Graphics, Adam Alvarado of Edward Jones and Christopher Dunham of Dunham Insurance. Each has been appointed to a two year term. "I am very excited to have these three highly qualified additions to our board! Each one of them brings a unique talent to the chamber" said Keith Blackburn, President / CEO of the GFLGLCC. 


Mark Budwig
Mark Budwig Mark Budwig is the owner and president of S.MARK Graphics since its founding 30 years ago. The boutique creative agency designs marketing materials for print, electronic and advertising media. Budwig is responsible for new business development, maintaining client relationships and developing project concepts. S.MARK works with a wide range of businesses on both a project-to-project and retainer basis. About his board appointment, Budwig stated "I'm am excited to be joining the board of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. As an affiliate of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, I am happy to lend my leadership skills to these organizations to locally promote certified LGBT Business Enterprises. A great opportunity for gay-owned businesses to grow!"


Christopher Dunham
Dunham Insurance CEO Christopher Dunham began a successful career in 1989 with one of the top insurance companies in the country. In 1997—recognizing the need for a more personal approach to insurance and estate planning services—Christopher founded the agency that bears his name as a family business. About his board appointment, Dunham stated  "As a lifelong advocate of promoting equality through opportunity, it’s an honor to be chosen to serve on the Board of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and to take my place among an outstanding group of business and community leaders who are committed to promoting business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly communities. "I am privileged to be working alongside Keith Blackburn and this dynamic organization".


Adam Alvarado
Adam Alvarado graduated from Florida International University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science in Finance and a Certificate in Banking Studies. Adam spent 8 years as a Purchasing Manager for BE Aerospace Hardware company in Miami, FL and another 4 years as a Buyer at California Glass Company in the Bay Area. In 2012, Adam joined Edward Jones as a Financial Advisor. Recently, Adam spearheaded and chairs the YPG - Young Professionals Group of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. About his board appointment, Alvarado stated "I look forward to working with this amazing Board to make GFLGLCC the first choice for LGBQT & Allied Businesses. Thanks for the opportunity!" 


The GFLGLCC is a 501 C (6) Non Profit organization, which promotes business and economic opportunities for the LGBT and LGBT-friendly community. They are an advocate and resource for all member businesses that promote equality with a unified approach by working with appropriate organizations. Additional information can be found at GoGayFortLauderdale.com

For further information, please contact Keith Blackburn 305-798-5455