On November 19, Elise Lindborg and Kelli Henderson, co-owners of Brand|Pride (PPAI 253813, D4), a Seattle, Washington- and Las Vegas, Nevada-based distributor, were named the 2021 LGBT Supplier Of The Year by the National Gay, Lesbian Chamber Of Commerce (NGLCC). This was the second time Brand|Pride has won the award, and the only LGBT supplier in the history of the NGLCC to do so.

“When we look back on where we started and where we are today, we can truly say that the NGLCC has been a huge part of our success,” says Lindborg, CEO. “When we started, we never wanted to be known as the ‘gay’ or ‘LGBT’ company. We thought that we would be discriminated against and that printing 12 t-shirts at a time was how we were going to make a living. Getting certified through the NGLCC changed all that and has opened a whole new world of selling to large corporations.”

Brand|Pride’s success in 2020 has also led to two recognitions from the Puget Sound Business Journal. It made the list of top 25 Largest LGBTQ businesses in the Puget Sound and was in the top 20 of the Fastest Growing Private Businesses in the Puget Sound. While it has been in business since 2000, the distributor attributes the past three years of sustained growth to their focus on encouraging Fortune 500 companies to spend intentionally and use LGBT vendors for Pride events each June. When the pandemic hit, the company was working with more than 45 Fortune 500 companies for the 2020 Pride event season.

Lindborg adds, “Our customers are now Fortune 500 corporations who believe in diversity, equity and inclusion; companies that have set aside millions of dollars to spend specifically with LGBT-certified companies. Instead of printing 12 t-shirts at a time we are now printing batches of 5,000 and upwards of 40,000 t-shirts at a time. The LGBT certification is the most powerful certification we have and the focus on economic inclusion for the LGBT community has directly led to the success of our business.”