• wleiss

I am Gay. I Had To Prove It To The Chamber of Commerce

A focus for my business is working with members of the LGBTQ community. That’s because I am gay, and I understand it is important to provide a welcoming space where we can be open and honest with each other as we do business.


If you have questions about my legitimacy, It's official...I'm certified.


I joined the Connecticut LGBT Chamber of Commerce to spread the word about dōTERRA essential oils and the services I provide. The chamber provides great support, and I decided to apply for certification as an LGBT Business Entity with the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber. It would officially designate me as a minority LGBT-owned business on the national level.


The trouble started when they asked for documentation. Only LGBTQ-owned companies are eligible for certification, so applicants have to prove their bona fides. And they wouldn’t just accept a letter from my mother.


The organization does offer several options: I could supply a marriage certificate, for example, or divorce documents. Health insurance showing domestic partnership, sex change documents, a birth certificate with a legal gender marker change on it — all those would do.


But as a single cis-gender male, I don’t have any of them. So, after much back and forth, I was able to submit affidavits from three friends. That did it! And with my certification as an LGBT Business Entity, new opportunities await.


My first motivation for earning the certification was to show my fellow LGBTQ community members that my business is a safe place to seek coaching, massage therapy (I’m certified in that, too) and dōTERRA essential oils. Many larger companies have a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative within their businesses and may seek me out as a vendor to provide employee massages, participate in health days, give lunch-and-learn classes, and run programs all under the DEI banner and with DEI funds.


I serve anyone, but I hope my new designation will help me attract new gay, lesbian and trans customers who seek a business where they can feel safe and welcomed while being themselves.

I’ll be myself, too. Now I have the paperwork to prove it.

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