What a great way to launch Pride month. Our June 14 GSBA Pride Business Luncheon
was the best! There was such great energy during the Business Expo, outstanding presentations and the unveiling of our 2017/2018 GSBA Guide & Directory.
Just the mention of Attorney General Bob Ferguson
caused the room to erupt in applause with a warm standing ovation to the person who has provided national leadership in challenging the travel ban. AG Ferguson's presentation on the background and status of Washington State's lawsuit against the federal travel ban was not only informative but made us all proud to have an AG with such courage and commitment to uphold the law and the US Constitution. Of course, hearing the step by step drama that unfolded when Port Commissioner Courtney Gregoire
literally stopped a plane already on the tarmac, preventing the deportation of two people, added to the drama that is hard to believe we are all living with in our state and country. It is because of their leadership that Washington State is leading and inspiring the nation in challenging this discriminatory ban.
A highlight of the afternoon was welcoming Vincent Yao, Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Seattle
, to GSBA and his announcement of the first-ever LGBT Cultural Mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong
that is being sponsored by GSBA and the Seattle Chinese Chamber of Commerce. The mission will leave Seattle on October 26 and return on Nov 4. There are up to 50 spots available for those wanting to be part of history and I encourage you to not miss out on this lifetime opportunity.
Special thanks to our emcee, Bryan Adamson
, for so eloquently introducing our guests and leading our Q&A session, and to Rob Hampton
and the Visit Seattle team for sharing the impact that the travel ban is already having on international travel to Seattle.
Of course, I'd be remiss in not acknowledging the 21 businesses representing the travel, tourism, hospitality, media, and cannabis industries during the Business Expo. The displays were fun and interactive and businesses made some great connections. Big thanks to the luncheon sponsors and to Malcolm Smith
, our photographer for always doing such a great job.
Now that Pride is kicked off, there are tons of events to attend and GSBA will be at most of them. If you wish to staff a booth or walk in the parade with GSBA, please contact our office at 206-363-9188. If you'd like some 2017/2018 GSBA Guides for your own booth (they are a great draw)or some to distribute from your business, let us know.
President & CEO, GSBA