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Upstate LGBT Chamber opens to new members

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The Upstate SC LGBT Chamber has opened its application window for new members. (Photo/Provided)Last year’s challenging business climate spurred the creation of numerous professional support groups, but for South Carolina, the Upstate SC LGBT+ Chamber was a first.

The group, funded last year by Greenville entrepreneur Nathan Brown, is the state’s only affiliate of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, according to a news release announcing the group’s website and open membership launch today.

“The Upstate SC LGBT+ Chamber has been created to fill a long-absent voice of advocacy for the Upstate LGBT+ business community,” Brown, founder of software development firm Kiona Technologies, said in the release.

The group will provide access to resources for LGBT entrepreneurs and facilitate networking events, workshops and seminars for like-minded professionals. According to the release, the chamber aims to harness economic potential for the advancement of the LGBT community and marginalized individuals.

The chamber is accepting applications from LGBT+ “allies,” professionals, and business owners who reside or do business in the 10-county region of the Upstate including Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg and Union.

Annual memberships are available for individuals at $100, businesses for $150 to $750 and corporate partners with various benefits and sponsorship opportunities.

The Upstate SC LGBT+ Chamber is now also accepting applications for membership, business partnership, and donations for the Founder’s Circle, according to the release. Until May 31, any donor who gives $1,000 will qualify as a permanent member of the Founder’s Circle.

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