BEQ Today

Publisher’s Note: Fall 2021

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An inclusive business

When I sit and think that we have published 20 issues of BEQ Pride Magazine, I recall not knowing if I could get five people to sign up or any brands to support this mission. I only knew what I saw firsthand—many of our LGBTQ friends and allies were struggling to amplify the messages behind our common cause of inclusive business. Equitable treatment in the workplace, equal access to supply chain opportunities and Main Street open and welcoming to all.

“If you have come to help me you are wasting your time. But, if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.”
~Aboriginal Activists
Queensland, Australia

“My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together.”
~Desmond Tutu

Both are sentiments with which we intend to facilitate the growth and visibility of the LGBTQ+ business community for the next 20 issues of BEQ Pride Magazine.

We are opening nominations for our fifth annual list of leaders 40 and under. Beginning October 1st, you can tell us about the young leaders we need to know from your network, neighborhood or organization. We are excited to add to the list of 168 leaders making the world a better place.

We are listening, watching and taking action. We have learned so much from the great pause of 2020 and 2021, some of which Hootology founder Stefanie Francis shares in our cover story. Her team identified a change in BIPOC brand perception, prompting an additional study to find out the “why” behind that change. Many changes are reflected in this issue with more to follow in 2022. Two new BEQ Pride departments, Widening the Lens and Equitable Futures are great examples.

Widening the Lens (formerly called Perspective) is a space where LGBTQ+ individuals and allies at the intersection of identity, purpose and influence can share their points of view from their areas of expertise on an issue or circumstance of interest to our audience. We are pleased to share thoughts from Leah Rader Bowers, Ph.D., and David R. Morse in these pages.

Equitable Futures will examine actions taken now that are an investment in a more equitable future for all. In this issue, we are taking a deep dive into the Ypsilanti, Mich. world of Eastern Michigan University. Dr. James Smith, university president, has much to be proud of with the implementation of generative and strategic goals like preparing students to successfully and meaningfully interact with people from diverse backgrounds through active global engagement. Strong cultural awareness and respect, responsibility, pride and diversity are at the core of the university’s mission to prepare students for the future.

As in every issue, there are many examples of the humanity that fuels our individual pursuit and expression of happiness. We are always grateful for our contributors, sponsors and interviewees who help bring our magazine and community to life each quarter. What we ask of our readers is to engage each subject selected for this issue to fully experience the brilliance of inclusion and belonging.

Robin Signature

Business Equality Pride (BEQPride) is the first publication from the BEQ family of national print and digital magazines exclusively addressing the needs of LGBTQ small-to-medium sized businesses, entrepreneurs and professionals.