Year-End and Parting Message from Our President
Members and friends,
As this unprecedented year of 2020 comes to a close and I end my tenure as President and board member of the Nashville LGBT Chamber, I am thankful for you and the resiliency of our community. In spite of the challenges, the Chamber has had an exemplary year. None of this is possible without support from memberships or donations and we value your continued support as we close the year. We have grown together, and we are just getting started.
As I reflect upon my six years of service to the LGBT Chamber I think about the countless memories that have been created. I’m proud of all that we have accomplished during my tenure on the board - too much to mention them all but I’m most proud of the impact we have had on the LGBT and business community in the Nashville area. We did that through extensive growth in our membership; top-notch advocacy work; connecting across Nashville’s diverse communities; upping our branding, communications and marketing; providing exemplary programming; and providing opportunities to those who may not have had a voice previously.
It’s not possible to summarize six years of work with the Chamber and who made it all possible. But I’d like to thank those who had the greatest impact.
First and foremost I’d like to thank you, the membership, for supporting the organization, our staff, the board and me. I’d also like to thank the countless contacts I have called upon as resources.
To my current and former board members, I appreciate the dedication, long hours, and commitment many have demonstrated. Thank you. There have been many opportunities and even some major learning lessons but we have always been there for each other and the staff. It’s been an honor to serve as the board’s leader for the past three years, and I’ve enjoyed getting to know them personally and professionally. We often come for the opportunity but stay for the people. I’m excited to pass the gavel on to Steph Ballou at AllianceBernstein. The Chamber and the board are in good hands with her. She will lead this organization with the commitment and grace it deserves.
I’ve been lucky to work for several world-class organizations. I’d like to thank my friends at UBS where I came out and built my brand as an LGBT advocate and champion. I’m proud of what we accomplished while I was there.
We all hope we have a career where we can enjoy what we do and who we work with. I am blessed to have both with Waller. I have relied on many of my peers at Waller when the Chamber needed it.
The Chamber has also been fortunate to have fearless leadership and dedication from our staff.
Joe Woolley is the reason I got involved with the Chamber. I have seen Joe lead this organization from both the CEO and President positions and I commend him for his vision and the impact he has made on the Chamber. Joe’s passion, ability to seize opportunities and motivate people most when they need it is the sign of a true leader. I know this Chamber is set up for continued successes even in uncharted territory.
Thank you to Lauren Bland, Membership Manager, who works to create a welcoming and inclusive environment for our members and supporters.
And to Lisa Howe, the Chamber’s first CEO, I send you a heartfelt thank you for paving the way.
Lastly, I would not have been able to serve in this capacity without the love and support of my husband, Doug. Doug has been unwavering in his support for my work and commitment to the Chamber. He was there for me whenever I needed him.
In closing, I’d like to let you know that I am not going away but I will take some time to reflect on this journey. Because of the pandemic, I didn’t get to give the President’s Award at this year’s Pride in Business Awards but I would have given it collectively to you, our members, who have persevered through so much this year.
I look forward to seeing all of you as we continue this path towards LGBT equality in business, the workplace, and in society. Together with your support, we can.