Community in Action

HRBOR Celebrates 10 Years of Business Outreach

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Hampton Roads Business OutReach (HRBOR), the Virginia Beach LGBT Chamber of Commerce, celebrated its 10th anniversary with a gala event on May 20 at the Hilton Norfolk THE MAIN. National Association of Gay and Lesbian Chambers of Commerce Senior Vice President Sam McClure was the keynote speaker. A reception, sponsored by Overture Point, followed by a plated dinner and live entertainment by the Jakob Vanko Band rounded  out the evening.

“The Gala is not solely a networking event,” said Past President Geneva Perry. “It’s a celebration of what we have accomplished and the launching pad for where we are going.”

HRBOR was conceived in December of 2006 when a handful of the LGBT owned, operated and allied business owners saw the need for resources and support in a professional business setting.

From that humble beginning, HRBOR was founded. After taking care of the legal formalities, in 2007 the organization established their signature “Third Thursday” monthly networking events. Third Thursdays quickly became known as the most welcoming and well attended monthly networking events in the area and chamber members eagerly await their opportunity to serve as host.

HRBOR serves as a community resource for organizations and government entities and maintains a strong presence in local higher education. Members actively mentor upcoming business leaders from the area’s colleges and universities. In 2010 the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) awarded HRBOR its Rising Star Chamber of the Year award.

“The exponential growth of HRBOR over the last decade has been impressive, and it continues to grow and diversify with our community,” Perry said. “We have members from all sectors of industry, from multinational corporations to sole proprietors. And we offer each of those businesses customized levels of benefits.”

HRBOR promotes LGBT influence through business ownership, workforce equality and active consumerism, creating prosperity to support equality, diversity and inclusion.

Gala sponsors were  Overture Point Chesapeake Apartments, the  Hilton Norfolk THE MAIN and iHeart Media.
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