August 8, 2019 at 5:46 am EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
Gay & Lesbian Chamber announces new name
Equality Chamber, gay news, Washington Blade
‘We are changing our brand to reflect both the progress we’ve made in being a more inclusive organization and where we want to continue to grow,’ said ECCDC President Van Goodwin. (Photo courtesy of Goodwin)

The D.C.-based Capital Area Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce announced on Aug. 2 that it’s changing its name and rebranding its image for the second time in its 28-year history.

Its new name will be the Equality Chamber of Commerce DC Metro Area (ECCDC).

“Originally founded as the Potomac Executive Network (PEN), the Chamber began when being associated with an organization that had ‘gay’ in its name would end a career or business,” the organization said in a statement.

“Eventually rebranding to the Capital Area Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (CAGLCC), its members were proud to ‘come out’ as an organization,” the statement says. “With the continued advancement of the LGBTQ rights movement,” the Chamber announced in its Aug. 2 statement, “‘gay and lesbian’ no longer reflects where it is as an organization, nor where the LGBTQ rights movement should be.”

In a separate statement on social media, the organization’s president, Van Goodwin, stated, “We are changing our brand to reflect both the progress we’ve made in being a more inclusive organization and where we want to continue to grow…We believe more LGBTQ professionals and business owners should have a seat at the table, and we want you to have a seat at ours.”

The first statement says that in connection with the rebrand, the Chamber plans to host special public and members-only events over the next few months, including an official rebrand celebration for its members on Aug. 22. Goodwin told the Blade the organization’s new website, eccdc.biz, would be officially live by Monday, Aug. 12.

Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

© Copyright Brown, Naff, Pitts Omnimedia, Inc. 2019. All rights reserved.