FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ATLANTA, Ga., August 15, 2022 –– OUT Georgia Business Alliance is proud to announce the finalists for its 2023 Community Honors Celebration‘s spotlight awards, highlighting the individuals and organizations boldly leading Georgia’s LGBTQ+ community.
The 2023 Community Honors Celebration will be held Friday, September 8, at The Stave Room, and OUT Georgia will recognize finalists and announce the winners live in the categories of Business Leader, Community Leader, Next Gen Leader, Nonprofit, Corporate Ally, Small Business, New Business, and Member of the Year!
Tickets to the Community Honors Celebration include an assigned seat at a main floor table, cocktail reception, dining by Endive, sweet bites by Ché Rene Macarons, open bar, and a night of fabulous celebration and entertainment hosted by Kia Comedy, with Blake “Mary Lou Pearl” Mitchell, Royal T, video tributes to our first three decades as a chamber, and after-party beats by DJ Exel!
Award finalists were identified with guiding input from the community, and OUT Georgia’s executive leadership will determine the winners of each category, except for Member of the Year which will be open to Membership voting August 28, 2023.
Winners in each category below will be announced LIVE during the 2023 Community Honors Celebration held Friday, September 8, at The Stave Room!
Business Leader of the Year
This award is given to the LGBTQ+ business leader in our community who has made an outstanding and sustained contribution to their organization, as well as to the OUT Georgia Business Alliance and the LGBTQ+ business community.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Business Leader of the Year finalists are:
- William Duffee-Braun (he/him), Valiant Marketing
- Charles Hicks (he/him), Morris, Manning, and Martin, LLP
- Dalia Kinsey (no pronouns), Kinsey Wellness
- Luke Maslow (he/him), APG Emerging Tech
- Betsy Robinson (she/her), Tier4 Group
Community Leader of the Year
This award recognizes a Community Leader who demonstrates a commitment to serving and advancing the LGBTQ+ community by having created or contributed significantly to the success of one or more local nonprofit organizations or community efforts.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Community Leader of the Year finalists are:
- Danielle Bonanno (she/her), Athens Pride, Inclusive Recovery Athens/Acceptance Recovery Center
- Percy Brown (he/him), Lambda Legal
- Matthew Duncan (he/him), Augusta Pride
- Craig Hardesty (he/him), Out on Film
- Dr. DeAndre S. Pickett (he/him), Hope Global Forums
- Dr. Alie Redd (she/her), Covenant House Georgia
- Alex Santiago (he/him), I Am Human Foundation, Destination Tomorrow
Next Gen Leader of the Year
This award is given to a young LGBTQ+ leader, professional, or entrepreneur who has demonstrated exceptional performance and an innovative drive that has benefited their organization and the LGBTQ+ community.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Next Gen Leader of the Year finalists are:
- 2AM Ricky (he/him), recording artist
- DeMarcus Beckham (he/him), Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Georgia / Reach to Impact
- Malik Khalid (he/him), AMADOR Yoga
- Sabia Wade (she/they), Loads of Pride
- Toni-Michelle Williams (she/her), Solutions Not Punishment Collaborative (SnapCo.)
Nonprofit of the Year
This award is given to a nonprofit organization that works tirelessly in order to positively impact the health, happiness, and general welfare of those in the LGBTQ+ community.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Nonprofit of the Year finalists are:
- All-1-Family Mental Health Services
- Colgay Pride of Columbus, Georgia
- Destination Tomorrow
- Paragon Cooperative and Club
- Southern Fried Queer Pride
Corporate Ally of the Year
This award is given to the Corporate Partner or Member that has shown exemplary support to the LGBTQ+ business community and to OUT Georgia Business Alliance. As a corporation, the nominee has taken a leadership role in promoting equity, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace; demonstrates a high level of corporate social responsibility in the community; and supports their employee diversity of LGBTQ Employee Resource Group.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Corporate Ally of the Year finalists are:
Small Business of the Year
This award is given to the LGBTQ-owned small business in the community that has shown exemplary support to the LGBTQ+ business community and to the OUT Georgia Business Alliance.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Small Business of the Year finalists are:
New Business of the Year
This award is presented to the LGBTQ-owned small business that is less than two years old and already building a track record of excellence, innovation, and impact.
- Ché René Macarons & More
- Focus2Rise Life Coaching
- The Gayly Dose LLC
- Loads of Pride
- Root Velocity Partners, LLC
Member of the Year
This award is presented to the LGBTQ+ or allied entrepreneur or professional who has shown innovation in their business practices resulting in the advancement of their organization. In addition, this award recipient will also have advanced the mission, goals, and purpose of OUT Georgia Business Alliance, resulting in a positive impact for the LGBTQ+ business community.
OUT Georgia’s 2023 Member of the Year finalists are:
- Dr. Christopher Cross (he/him), Cross River Strategies, LLC
- Johnny Elder (he/him), Morgan Stanley
- Aubri Escalera (she/her), Trans Power in Diversity
- Felicia “B.G.” McCoy (she/her), BG Promotions, Inc.
- Adam Ngo (he/him), AN-GO Design Studio
Member of the Year voting closes Monday, August 28 at 5pm Eastern, and all category winners will be announced LIVE during the 2023 Community Honors Celebration held Friday, September 8, at The Stave Room!
Voting for OUT Georgia’s 2023 Member of the Year is strictly for active Members! If you would like to join OUT Georgia Business Alliance, our state’s only LGBTQ+ and Allied Chamber of Commerce, visit https://outgeorgia.org/join/
2022 Spotlight Award Winners
2021 Spotlight Award Winners
2020 Spotlight Award Winners
About OUT Georgia Business Alliance
OUT Georgia Business Alliance proudly serves as Georgia’s only LGBTQ+ and Allied Chamber of Commerce.
Since 1994, OUT Georgia Business Alliance (formerly the Atlanta Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce) has served the LGBTQ+ and Allied business community by advocating for the most inclusive and equitable business environment; providing support and resources to fuel economic growth; and driving meaningful community connections and impact across the State of Georgia.
OUT Georgia Business Alliance is a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., and is a proud affiliate of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce. For more information, contact us at OUTGeorgia.org or info@OUTGeorgia.org.