NGLCC Visits NMSDC: The Importance of Networking, Certifying, and Intersectionality

| By Kaela Roeder

On October 13th, the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) had the pleasure of attending and supporting the 2019 National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) Conference and Business Opportunity Exchange.

The goals of the NMSDC are to support Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs) by integrating them into corporate and public sector supply-chains, educating them through programs, and building a network of MBEs to support their corporate partners.  As newly inducted members of the National Business Inclusion Consortium (NBIC), they stand with NGLCC and our organizational allies in supporting an economy that works for all diverse Americans.

Here at NGLCC, these goals drive our mission as well!

This year’s NMSDC conference was one to remember. From October 13 to 16, MBEs networked and learned skills to help their businesses thrive. Co-Founder and President Justin Nelson of NGLCC also participated, and was inspired both by the valuable connections businesses were making and the educational workshops offered at the conference.

Nelson participated in the “Supplier Diversity: Enhancing Global Procurement” panel along with other leaders in business: Laura Berry, CEO of Supply Nation, and Gary Joseph, CEO of the South African Supplier Diversity Council.

The panelists touched on how diverse suppliers can build innovation, drive competition, and promote growth for all businesses around the world.

“When building a program anywhere around the world, it needs to be LGBT inclusive at this point,” he said.

Another panel that Nelson attended was “Intersectionality: A Personal Perspective.” It was a conversation between Roxanna Daniel, co-founder of the Taj Development Company, and Marquita Thompson, the executive director of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.

This panel focused on intersectionality in business and their personal experiences in the business world. This panel was a stand-out moment for Nelson, who felt that his role was best described as being an ally in the room.

“I readily acknowledge my male and white privilege. I have not walked in many of the shoes of the people in that room, but I would not be where I am today without allies,” Nelson said.

Nelson also recognized that many LGBT people have several other identities, other than being LGBT.

“There are many other classifications people have, and they should not have to check parts of their identity at the door,” he said.

Conferences like NMSDC promote intersectionality and inclusive practices for all identities. These events also highlight the strength that comes with dual certifications, or even triple certifications. Roxanna Daniel of Taj Development Company is certified through NGLCC, NMSDC, and The Women's Business Enterprise National Council.

NGLCC and NMSDC are organizational allies. They both work to make all places inclusive and intersectional. At conferences like these, LGBT individuals and other minorities can connect and be accepted and recognized for all of their identities.

NGLCC has also taken steps to build a more intersectional community with our Communities of Color Initiative (CoCi). This initiative works to support the growth and success of minority-LGBT owned businesses through community building and business development. Ultimately, creating equal opportunities for economic advancement and the empowerment of the minority-LGBT community.

We are honored to have been a part of this year’s NMSDC conference, and cannot wait for next year!

Want to know more about NMSDC? Visit their website to learn more about their mission.

Learn more on how you can certify your business through NGLCC here.