June 1st, 2023

WASHINGTON – This month, the Small Business Digital Alliance (SBDA), a co-sponsorship between the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Business Forward, Inc., is celebrating Pride Month with its National Members, Local Allies, and small businesses. 

“LGBTQ-owned businesses faced disproportionately greater economic hardship during the pandemic. In fact, they experienced 27 percent more financial losses in 2020 than their non-LGBTQ counterparts. Two years later, nearly 80 percent expected to make a full recovery and return to pre-pandemic levels. Now, these LGBTQ-owned businesses are utilizing innovative solutions to bounce back,” says Business Forward Executive Director Liz Fairchild. “Digital tools can help them attract stronger talent, reach higher performance levels, and increase economic output.

See what SBDA National Members and Local Allies Are Saying:

Kevin Heard, Board President, Detroit Regional LGBT Chamber of Commerce: “There is an estimated 1.4 million LGBTQ+ owned businesses contributing 1.7 trillion to the US GDP. We must support these businesses as they are vital to the overall health of our economy. These certified businesses can be found in every state in the country and in nearly every industry and our chamber in Michigan are the boots on the ground searching for opportunities to help them scale.”

Lashawna Manigault, Director of District Business Liaison Program, Small Business Services, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation: “Embracing and empowering LGBTQ small businesses strengthens local economies while promoting equality and social progress. These enterprises are beacons of inspiration, resilience and innovation, driving positive change in every corner of our communities. It’s critically important that we invest in these businesses to ensure their survival.”

Fern Stroud, Founder & Creator,, Member of the Oakland African American Chamber of Commerce: "Innovation for us has come in the form of leveraging our existing relationships and forming new relationships to test and build out new business models. The pandemic completely shifted how we approach our customer needs, wants and desires. Being able to forge new partnerships in the midst of a complete economic downturn propelled our ability to redefine our business strategies. Often innovative strategies are thought to be technology driven, however for us innovation was process & people driven."

Samantha Wellington, EVP of Business Affairs, Chief Legal Officer and Secretary, TriNet: “TriNet is a proud supporter of Pride Month, a member of the Business Coalition for Equality Act, and a committed and active ally for the LGBTQIAA+ community. We are particularly cognizant of state actions that single out members of the community, and increase complexity for SMBs operating across state lines. Our colleague resource group, TNET Pride, builds colleague connections in a safe and courageous space—empowering, supporting, and celebrating our incredibly diverse LGBTQIAA+ community. At TriNet, we are committed to helping our SMB customers navigate the complexity created by a web of conflicting state laws and we are thrilled to celebrate Pride Month with the SBDA, our amazing colleagues and SMB customers—and everyone." 

To learn more about the SBDA, visit


Co-sponsorship Authorization No: 22-5-C: The SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products, or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.

This website is provided as a public service under co-sponsorship Authorization #22-5-C. It is not an official U.S. government website, and it may contain links to non-U.S. government information. The inclusion of such links does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the SBA. The SBA is not responsible for the content, accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of linked information.



The Small Business Digital Alliance (SBDA) is a joint co-sponsorship agreement between the SBA and Business Forward, Inc. that brings together major players, influencers, and companies in the tech, e-commerce, benefits, and other industries to help small businesses connect with digital tools and reach new customers through expanded opportunities through trainings, tools, and expansion of their digital networks – free of charge. To learn more, visit


Business Forward has helped more than 270,000 local business leaders make the “business case” for climate action, affordable healthcare, immigration reform, diversity and inclusion, sensible tax laws, criminal justice reform, infrastructure investment, new trade deals, and other pro-growth reforms. Our leaders brief policymakers, work with local media, publish op-eds, submit testimony, and advocate online. We also promote their recommendations through issue briefs, survey reports, training manuals, podcasts, and social media. More than 800 mayors, governors, members of Congress, and senior Administration officials have participated in our briefings, including three presidents. Learn more at


The U.S. Small Business Administration helps power the American dream of business ownership. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow, expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit

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