Current Events

Congratulations to the 2024 Colorado LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce: 40 under 40 Business Leaders!

Alex Gutierrez

Denver Mayors Office


Born in Los Angeles, Alex Gutierrez is the son of immigrants from Aguascalientes, México. The eldest of five boys, Gutierrez began participating in politics at a young age due to two major events: the attacks on September 11th and the fight for LGBT+ Rights and Equality. Wanting to give back and help the many activists who came before him, Gutierrez has spent a decade working in the political landscape by helping elect effective leadership and to inspire community involvement and engagement.


During Mayor Mike Johnston’s Mayoral campaign, Gutierrez showcased his exceptional organizational and mobilization skills all over Denver from the start of the campaign. Immediately after the election he got to work as one of the Assistant Deputy Directors of then Mayor-Elect Mike Johnston’s Transitional Team and is now serving in the Mayor’s Office of Community Outreach as a Senior Outreach Manager.


Beyond politics, Gutierrez is the proud father of a soon to be 18-year-old son, is an uncle, and an advocate for sober living and plant-based eating for 10 years. He enjoys reading non-fiction, is a former server/bartender, and enjoys watching musicals, historical documentaries, as well as comedies and horror movies.

Ronald Robbins

Clicta Digital Agency


Ronald Robbins is the Founder & Chief Executive Officer at Clicta Digital Agency – a growth-driven digital marketing agency headquartered in Denver, Colorado. Establishing the company in 2017, Ron is a certified LGBT Business Enterprise and 1% for the Planet Business Member dedicated to diversity, equity, and inclusion. He’s also a firm believer in fighting for environmental causes while giving back to tackle the planet’s most pressing environmental issues.

You’ll find Ron does business a little differently. At the core, he plans every growth marketing campaign with a tailored strategy designed for each of his clients. He believes in honesty, transparency, and data-driven results in his daily practices. This approach to marketing, combined with analyzing search trends, evaluating audience needs, and refining strategies, has produced optimal results that drive engagement and revenue.


Zach Meier

Greens Gone Wild


I’m proud to wear many hats to represent the LGBTQ+ community. As the Co-founder of Greens Gone Wild, I’m passionate about creating delicious and nutritious protein bars while also advocating diversity and inclusivity in workplaces. At Greens Gone Wild, we’re not just about creating healthier products; we’re about representing and supporting the community through our business. I also serve as the Co-Manager of Avalanche of Pride, an amazing LGBTQ+ hockey that works to create a safe and welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ individuals to enjoy hockey. It’s incredibly rewarding to see the positive impact Avalanche of Pride has on our members and the broader hockey community. Through my work in entrepreneurship and advocacy, I strive to make a difference in both business and sports. By fostering community, diversity, and inclusion, I hope to leave a lasting impact on those around me, proving that positive change is possible when we come together with passion and purpose.

Sarah Tinkler

Northwestern Mutual

Sarah (she/her) is a Managing Director & Wealth Management Advisor with Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company in Denver, Colorado. She & her team operate a whole-soul-centered financial planning business called Warrioress Wealth nationally serving clients in 40+ states. Sarah is a Women’s Leadership Program graduate, & part of the inaugural Pride Leadership Program. Sarah is a self-proclaimed nerd on all things financial planning with her 9 licenses (life insurance, health insurance, long-term care insurance, & FINRA series 6, 63, SIE, 7, 9, & 10) & 6 designations (CLU®, ChFC®, RICP®, CFP®, CAP®, CSRIC®).


Sarah lives full-time in Denver, Colorado & part-time in Coral Springs, Florida with her fiancée Renata Carvalho (she/her) & their dog Moana. Sarah loves being a thread that unifies their families. Sarah is also a Yoga Instructor (Forrest yoga, kids, yin, prenatal, hot, hot power fusion, & Yoga Shred), NASM Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Life Coach, & Whole Foods Plant Based Nutrition Certificant. Nature is her happy place, her restoration, where she can hear her soul & soak up wisdom, so you’ll likely find her every weekend (when she’s not traveling) off in the woods of Colorado or the desert Southwest hiking, trail running, backpacking, or car camping.

Jade Baranski

Mobilize Vision


Jade Baranski (They/Them) is a tech diplomat who proves the bogeyman isn’t real: However dark and looming the problem seems – it’s comprised of lighter, more manageable parts. Also a speaker and serial entrepreneur, Jade is notably the co-founder of Mobilize VISION, a coalition software company that turns massive, efficiency-starved bureaucracies into dynamic ecosystems where scalable innovation is the norm. Precision thinking and connecting people to problems they’re equipped to solve is the hallmark of Jade’s work. Restoring public faith in government and institutions with paradigm-shifting technology is the crux of Jade’s mission. Feeling the results of one’s contributions in life is Jade’s wish for everyone.


For nearly two decades, Jade has built, grown, and purchased companies; they’ve sold two. They’re the recipient of several successful multimillion-dollar federal contract awards, and they’re an advisor to startups in the early stages of connecting with the commercial and GovTech space. They’ve led and advised multiple nonprofits and social justice campaigns and are the founding board member of the Queer Business Alliance, a nonprofit that equips LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs with resources to start, grow, and succeed in business.

Cory Messer

Bear Den Massage LLC

Cory is a dedicated professional with a passion for enhancing the well-being of others through massage therapy and athletic training. Graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Athletic Training from Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM) in 2016 laid the foundation for Cory’s career in promoting physical health and rehabilitation. Building on this, Cory pursued further education, graduating with a Massage Therapy Degree from the Colorado School of Healing Arts (CSHA) in 2018. In 2020 I started Bear’s Den Massage LLC to provide a Safe-Space for the LGBTQ+ community to receive therapeutic massage therapy.

Cory’s approach to massage therapy is characterized by the belief that clients should leave each session feeling better than when they arrived. At Bear’s Den Massage LLC, this philosophy takes center stage. Clients are empowered to communicate their needs during the session, ensuring a tailored experience that addresses individual concerns and preferences.

Driven by a profound sense of purpose, Cory finds fulfillment in the ability to merge knowledge of anatomy, injuries, illness, and rehabilitation to provide clients with personalized care. For Cory, massage therapy and athletic training are not just professions but avenues through which to channel a genuine passion for helping others achieve optimal physical well-being.

Amanda Gonzalez

Jefferson County


Amanda Gonzalez is a dedicated professional known for her instrumental work in promoting civic engagement through policy development. She was elected as the Clerk and Recorder in Jefferson County in 2022 where she is the first Latina and first out queer person in the role. Throughout her career, Amanda has held diverse roles including policy analyst, staff attorney, small business CEO , nonprofit director, and Chicano Studies adjunct professor. She is the first in her family to go to college, holding degrees from Occidental College and the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. She is proud to have she played pivotal roles in formulating and advocating for policies that expanded ballot access, curtailed the influence of money in politics, created Colorado’s independent redistricting commission, and ensured an accurate count in the 2020 Census.

Clerk Gonzalez is using her extensive experience from the public and private sector to build an equitable, accessible, trustworthy democracy for the Jeffco of today and tomorrow. As the Clerk she has advocated for fair wages for workers, protections for election workers, and helped pass first of its kind legislation that requires in-person voting in Colorado’s jails. Under her leadership the Clerk’s office has also created a pride seal for people who would like one on their marriage license, increased training for Clerk and Recorder staff, and works every day to ensure that all constituents are welcomed in the office with dignity and respect.

Gabbi Payne

Premier Members Credit Union


Born and raised in Denver, CO, Gabriale (“Gabbi”) Payne holds a Master’s degree in African History with dual minors in Feminist and Critical Sexuality Studies, and Development Studies and Social Change. Her education and personal experience provide her with a deep knowledge of the historical development and contemporary realities of race/racism, sex/sexism, and how these and other -isms shape our day-to-day lives. With over a decade of experience as a critical pedagogue designing inclusive curricula for university students, she now excels at helping businesses to foster inclusive workplace cultures. Gabbi is dedicated to the creation and promotion of organizational cultures that embrace diversity, prioritize equity and inclusion, and affect a genuine sense of belonging for all.

Christopher LaFleur

Christopher LaFleur Arts


Christopher La Fleur is an event producer specializing in queer community events and an internationally collected contemporary fine artist living and working in Denver, CO. He founded his business Christopher La Fleur ARTS in October of 2018 and launched his event production company La Fleur ARTS Productions in 2021. In 2021, he additionally launched several lines of merchandise featuring his works of art. In 2017, he founded and produced Aurora Pride, the first dedicated Pride event in the city of Aurora, Colorado. Since then, some of his notable production credits include the 2023 Colorado Health Network Red Ball, the annual PiNK R!NO Queer and Allied Vendor Market summer series, the 2023 Colorado Health Network Festival For Life, curation of the Envision:You Annual Art Show Fundraisers between 2019 and 2023, and the annual CHROMA: Queer and Allied Art Showcases.

His artistic passions are strongly rooted in nature and contemporary Pop Art. In 2023, his artwork was featured on the Jones Soda Co. Rebel Labels collection of bottles which were available in 4000 retail stores nationwide during Pride Month. With 20 gallery shows and exhibition credits, he has cultivated an extensive international network of more than 700 collectors and patrons from Aspen to Australia. He maintains a robust program of charitable donations, with annual fundraising totaling more than $100,000.00 for various local nonprofit organizations in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022. In 2023, he helped local nonprofits raise nearly $200,000.00 in much needed funding. He is passionate about philanthropy, the queer community, and empowering the queer business community.

You can learn more about Christopher at

Joe Wood

Office of Diana DeGette


I am inspired by our community leaders and proud to have served Councilwoman Debbie Ortega as a City Council Aide and now Congresswoman Diana DeGette as her Outreach Director. These two once in a generation women have made an incredible impact on our city and shown me and many others the meaning of public service and leadership. My colleagues have taught me even more about comradery, dedication, and teamwork. Our work together builds strong connections between community and government to support the people of Denver, a city that I love. 

Being part of the LGBTQ community has given me empathy and perspective as I navigate local and national politics. I grew up in Denver and graduated from George Washington HS and Colorado College. In my spare time I enjoy lampworking glass, cars, climbing, and working out.

Billy Lainez

Pastry Chef

Guillermo Lainez is a distinguished pastry chef with a flair for blending artistry and culinary expertise. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Art from the University of Missouri – Kansas City, Guillermo honed his creative skills and was recognized locally for outstanding photography. Driven by a passion to integrate art into a new medium, Guillermo pursued and completed his culinary education at the Escoffier Culinary Institute.

With four years of dedicated experience, Guillermo has specialized in crafting complex luxury and wedding cakes, earning a stellar reputation in Denver’s vibrant culinary scene. His unique approach to pastry art has captivated clients and critics alike, setting a new standard for visual and taste excellence.

Beyond his professional achievements, Guillermo is actively involved in the LGBT community in Denver and maintains strong family ties in both the DC area and Nicaragua. His dedication to community service and family underscores his commitment to making a positive impact both personally and professionally.

Guillermo lives by the philosophy, “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” This guiding principle reflects his ability to transform everyday ingredients into extraordinary works of edible art.

Paola Ruiz-Portillo

Pinnacol Assurance


Paola Ruiz-Portillo (she/her) is a proud queer Salvadoreña who grew up in Miami and made a home in Denver with her wife, Angie, and their dog, Petunia. Passionate about advocating for the communities she loves, Paola pivoted her career in insurance underwriting to amplify voices for workplace change. As the diversity, equity and inclusion specialist for Colorado’s largest workers’ compensation insurer, Pinnacol Assurance, she has partnered with senior leadership and team members across the organization to create a culture of inclusion that deeply values differences. Paola is a quiet and authentic leader who leads through listening and empathy but is not afraid to speak up to challenge inequitable practices and systems. Paola is the co-founder of LEGADO and co-chair of the LGBTQ+ ERG – two employee resource groups integral to uplifting the voices of Pinnacol’s Latine and LGBTQ+ employees and creating a more equitable workplace. Paola’s influence is tangible and discernible through the numerous instances where her colleagues convey their gratitude and appreciation for her. Her considerate and thoughtful approach is evident in all her interactions and endeavors.

When she’s not championing change, you can find Paola cuddled up with a big book or working on creative writing projects.

Antonio Huerta

U.S. Senator John W. Hickenlooper


Antonio Huerta grew up in the eastern plains of Colorado, graduating from Granada High School and Lamar Community College simultaneously in 2013. He then earned both his bachelor’s degree in business management and a master’s in business administration (MBA) from Colorado State University Pueblo in 2017. As a student, Antonio was a tireless advocate for his peers, serving as President of the CSU Pueblo Associated Students’ Government, participating in the President’s Leadership Program, and representing students on the Colorado State University Board of Governors.

Antonio’s professional journey began at El Pomar Foundation as a Fellow, where he delved into the world of social impact, donor intent, and community service. Following his fellowship, he became the Director of Philanthropy at CSU Pueblo, where he successfully exceeded fundraising targets for the betterment of his alma mater, a Hispanic Serving Institution. He later became a Business Development Associate at Tlingit Haida Tribal Business Corporation, earning business with major federal agencies such as the Department of Defense and NASA. Currently, Antonio serves as the Southern Colorado Regional Director for U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper, advocating for 12 counties in Southern Colorado. In this role, he’s advised on policy, Congressionally Directed Spending and grants, and collaborates with various stakeholders to support constituents’ needs. His extensive experience in both public and private sectors, combined with his rural background, provides him with a unique perspective to support the communities he loves.

Antonio’s commitment to excellence, diversity, and inclusion is evident in both his work and community involvement. He was recently recognized as the CSU Pueblo Hasan School of Business 2023 Distinguished Young Alumni. Antonio also graduated from the Colorado Governor’s Fellowship and is currently participating in the Colorado Springs Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Adelante Leadership Institute. In 2020, he was named a Rising Star by the Colorado Springs Business Journal and served as an adjunct professor for the Hasan School of Business at CSU Pueblo. Additionally, he served on the Board of Directors for the Southern Colorado Women’s Chamber of Commerce Foundation and actively participates in community events and professional organizations. In his spare time, Antonio enjoys working out with friends at Crossfit SOCO and volunteering at various sporting events, including the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee and the Colorado Special Olympics.

CC Haug

Good Judy Garage

CC Haug (age 39) is the co-founder and co-owner of Good Judy Garage in Sheridan CO. She has twenty five years of automotive and industrial work experience. Those of you crunching the numbers are correct, she started working as a mechanic at the age of fourteen. In addition to her years of practical experience, CC holds a bachelor’s of science in mechanical engineering from UCCS in Colorado Springs. As an entrepreneur she strives to utilize her talents for the benefit of her employees and customers.

A born and raised Colorado girl, CC loves the mountains and outdoors. She enjoys loud rock music and quiet evenings with her spouse and children. Her favorite hobby is modifying cars, motorcycles, or just about anything else she gets her hands on. CC Haug is a quintessential “Jill of all trades.”

Alicia Nolan

Choose to L;VE

There are rare individuals who transform personal adversity into a powerful force for change; Alicia Nolan is such a person. Through her initiative, Choose to L;VE, LLC, Alicia channels her personal challenges into advocacy for mental health and suicide prevention. Her dedication extends beyond advocacy, becoming a passionate quest to inspire change and resilience. With degrees in Business Administration, Criminal Justice (Forensics focus), and Dual Master’s in Homeland Security and Emergency Disaster Management, Alicia’s educational background is impressive. Her commitment is further highlighted by certifications in Master Resiliency Training, Mental Health First Aid, Question Persuade Refer Gatekeeper, and the “It Starts With Me” Award.


Driven by the loss of her wife, Alicia fights for systemic mental health reform and a shift in societal attitudes towards mental illness. Her work embodies a powerful narrative of transforming personal grief into a broader force for societal benefit, urging a future where mental health is prioritized. For those inspired by Alicia’s story or interested in collaborating, she invites you to reach out. Contact Alicia at [email protected] or visit to learn more about her speaking engagements, educational initiatives, or custom L;VE apparel. Join Alicia Nolan in her journey to reshape mental health perspectives and treatment, making a brighter, more inclusive future a reality.


Alicia Nolan: Resilient, Inspirational, Compassionate.






Savannah Jones

Jade Wellness


Dr. Savannah Jones is the owner of Jade Wellness, an LGBTQIA+ centered holistic wellness space in Denver. She is a licensed chiropractor & certified fertility doula. Jade Wellness is the only NGLCC Certified Chiropractic office in the state of Colorado. It is Dr. Savannah’s mission to provide affirming, affordable, and trauma informed care to queer and trans people because our community is so often left out of health conversations.

Lauren Wrich

New You Beauty Lab


Lauren is a licensed aesthetician and co-founder of New You Beauty Lab. As a cosmetic injector, Lauren specializes in advanced skin care and acne, curating personalized skin routines based on a deep familiarity with the skin care brands and products. Clients trust Lauren’s recommendations to achieve long-lasting results with lasers, injectables and products. As a trans woman, Lauren understands the importance of feeling comfortable in one’s own skin, which is why she began working in the industry six years ago. Lauren eventually started her own medical spa, New You Beauty Lab, in Edgewater, CO, finding success as a business helping clients with self-discovery, imagination and creative technique.   This year, Lauren volunteered as a Pride ambassador at a local brewery in the Tennyson neighborhood ensuring the brewery was prepared for pride month with impeccable decorations and no flag unrepresented. Lauren lives in Wheat Ridge, CO, with her husband, Carsten, and two dogs, Archer and Grayson

Justin Kanon

United Airlines & Keller Williams Urban Elite


Justin is a dedicated professional who is deeply committed to nurturing future leaders in aviation and advocating for affordable homeownership in Colorado. His role at United Airlines as a Recruiter in Pilot Hiring involves extensive travel across the United States to engage with Partnered Flight Schools and Universities to attract high-quality flight students to United’s industry-leading aviate program. This pivotal role is a testament to his commitment and belief in the power of ambition and training – underscored by his desire to become a pilot and begin formal training this Fall.

Justin’s dedication to making the dream of homeownership a reality for everyone, particularly within the vibrant state of Colorado, is a driving force in his work as a real estate broker with the Planted Team at Keller Williams Urban Elite in Denver. His profound understanding of the real estate market and compassionate approach ensure his clients feel supported and empowered throughout their home-buying journey.

Justin is passionate about mindfulness and community; Justin advocates for living in the present moment and infusing daily interactions with purpose and value. He applies this philosophy to his professional and personal endeavors, ensuring that every person he engages with feels seen, heard, and appreciated.

As a proud honoree of the Colorado LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce’s 40 Under 40, Justin continues to inspire and lead by example, fostering inclusivity and driving positive change within his community.

Joel Minor

Colorado Legal Services


Joel Minor (he/him) is the Deputy Director of Colorado Legal Services (CLS), Colorado’s statewide legal aid nonprofit that provides free legal representation to low-income Coloradans in civil (non-criminal) cases. At CLS, Joel leads the organization’s strategic impact litigation work and manages a team of over 150 talented lawyers, paralegals, and social workers.  Prior to joining CLS, Joel was the Environmental Justice Program Manager at the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, where he launched a new team dedicated to embedding equity into environmental policies and reducing environmental health disparities for communities of color and low-income communities. Joel also previously served as an Assistant Attorney General in the Natural Resources & Environment Section of the Colorado Attorney General’s Office, a Senior Associate Attorney at Earthjustice, and a Law Clerk to the Honorable Carlos F. Lucero of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.


A sixth-generation Coloradan, Joel earned his J.D. and M.S. in Environmental Science at Stanford, and his B.A. in Environmental Policy from Colorado College. He lives in Wheat Ridge with his husband Matt and their dog Ori.  Outside of work, Joel serves on the Board of Re:Vision (a Southwest Denver food justice nonprofit), plays in the Mile High Freedom Band (Denver’s LGBTQ+ marching & concert band), and previously served as judicial nominations co-chair for the Colorado LGBT Bar Association.

Fahad Ismail

Dentist DDS


The Eldest of four siblings, the son of two very loving parents and a self-proclaimed parent of a very moody cat, I have lived most of my life in Lahore, Pakistan where being part of the LGBTQIA+ community is not the easiest thing to be, despite of the support systems I had. Actively working to diminish an integral part of myself wanted me to first excel in other areas of my life and then pursue those accomplishments in parts of the world where I wouldn’t have to make myself smaller (even more so) to fit into the idea of hypermasculinity my culture adored.

I graduated from dental school in 2016 and started practicing Dentistry immediately in my home country. My goal for a freer life clear in my mind asynchronously I would visit the United States on and off, participating in electives clinical courses, shadowing dentists and preceptorships to gain that American experience I required to get into an advanced standing dental program, an accelerated version of the DDS degree that allows foreign qualified dentists to get accredited to work in the US. After 5 years of Pakistani dental practice, I got accepted into the University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine’s Advanced Standing Program in 2022, and now, with only 6 months left to graduate, I am looking forward to a life as a dentist in the United States. Maximizing my time as a student at the University of Colorado, I currently hold the position of Co-President for our school’s LGBTQIA+ student club, Smiles for Pride, which works on raising awareness and creating advocacy for the queer students at our school. I’m also part of the Student National Dental Association’s executive board, which strives to educate and celebrate our diverse student body. Over my 31 years of life, most of which I lived pretending to be something I’m not, my aim as a student was not only to relearn dentistry but also to use the opportunities given to me to celebrate those who may also not feel celebrated. I have been very lucky to have the chance to be the best version of myself, which I attribute to not just my family back home, my own persistence and stubbornness but also to the friends I have found at my school and outside of it, in Denver’s LGBTQIA+ community.

Tatenda Blessing Muchiriri

Montessori On Wheels


Tatenda Blessing Muchiriri (he/him) , a dynamic queer advocate forMontessori education, extends his impact beyond borders. Having discovered Montessori education while visiting Beijing, China, His journey took an international turn with notable work in Kenya and Zimbabwe, where he spearheaded initiatives to bring Montessori education to local communities. Tatenda’s commitment goes beyond conventional approaches; he has been actively investigating the Afrocentric relevance of Montessori education within the African context. This pioneering work reflects his dedication to aligning Montessori principles with the rich cultural tapestry of Kenya and Zimbabwe, fostering an educational approach that resonates with the local community.

Now based in Denver, Colorado, Tatenda continues to integrate his global experiences and Montessori expertise. His journey from Beijing to Africa and back to the United States exemplifies a passion for creating inclusive and culturally relevant educational experiences for children worldwide. Tatenda is the founder of Montessori on Wheels, a mobile learning program that seeks to expand access to Montessori education in Black and Brown communities, inspiring learning beyond walls. Tatenda Holds American Montessori Society birth to 6 credentials and was privileged to be part of the 2nd Emerging Leaders Fellowship 2018, Moonshot EdVentures 4 th cohort, 2020 and currently serves as a board member for Moonshot EdVenture and at the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Denver, Colorado. Currently, Tatenda is enrolled in a master’s program in International Development at Denver University.

Brayan Montes

Yamz: World of Color

Denver-based Artist Brayan Montes-Terrazas is better known by his alias YAMZ. Under YAMZ, Brayan’s unwavering identity-driven art stresses the importance of putting marginalized voices at the forefront of our conversations and the stories we tell.

He is driven by the essential need to tell the stories of his identity as an undocumented, queer person of color. Using art and design as the vessels to show others that they are not alone in the fight toward equity justice and sound mental health.

While he continues to develop the YAMZ: World of Color as both an art-based brand and community-driven organization, he maintains the principle that when we uplift marginalized identities through art we can heal, provide business solutions and bring each other up. Through Brayana’s art we show the world that representation matters and we must strive to build equity in the art and design fields.

Brayan continues to work with queer-owned, Women-Owned, and POS-owned businesses across the USA. He has also worked with large organizations such as Nestle, New Belgium Brewing, DoorDash, and XBOX/Microsoft

Paige Asmann

Governor’s Office of Information Technology


Paige Asmann is part of the Governor’s Office of Information Technology (OIT) Government Affairs team dedicated to supporting the Colorado Broadband Office. Paige recognizes that access to fast, reliable and affordable broadband affects every Coloradan’s quality of life. With a passion for helping close the digital divide, she works with various stakeholders, including private industry, local governments, and community members, to ensure the most efficient, effective and inclusive broadband policies are in place.

Paige helped establish Pride@OIT, OIT’s LGBTQIA+ Employee Resource Group. As a co-lead of Pride@OIT, Paige helps to foster and promote an inclusive place for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, and asexual employees. Paige is also a member of OIT’s Equity Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Action Alliance. Through the EDI Action Alliance, Paige helps to champion initiatives that address inequities in OIT’s workforce, its agency customers, and Coloradans impacted by systems and services provided by OIT.

Outside of work, Paige enjoys all of the great outdoor activities Colorado offers, including snowboarding, hiking, and gardening. She is a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community in Denver and thanks her family, friends, partner, and co-workers for all of their support.

Joseph Wimsatt Jr.

Hamburger Marys Denver


Joseph Wimsatt (he/him) is a self-proclaimed hair icon and strategic communications extraordinaire – passionate about creating cultures that foster memorable experiences, support long-term relationships, and drive missions forward. He has spent his career helping others find their voice and tell their story; from grassroots nonprofits working to prevent homelessness to national organizations providing crisis communications, his passion is in pulling strings behind the curtain. Though he recently moved on to a new role, you likely recognize him from his tenure at Hamburger Mary’s Denver, where he wore many hats, including Brand and Marketing Manager. His time in that role allowed him to push two of his favorite agendas: visibility and representation. He worked to create a space where everyone in the community felt respected and could see themselves represented in some way – patron, staff or performer. In such a divisive time, the opportunity to create safe, stable community for his community was truly a passion project. If you follow Hamburger Mary’s on social media, or if you’ve attended a show or event post-pandemic, you’re familiar with some of his work. 

Joseph is proud to be a member of the LGBTQ community, and is honored to be receiving this award. He’s looking forward to networking with affiliates and members of the Colorado LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce to make lasting connections and help create opportunities for the community.

Dominique DMINQ Robbins

Art Matters Productions

Dominque DMINQ Robbins is an R&B, HIP HOP, AND POP artist, SINGER, SONGWRITER, PRODUCER AND AUDIO ENGINEER. Dominque began his music journey at the age of two years young singing and showing an interest in music and performance. Dominque later grew up to become one of the more popular singers in his church, playing multiple instruments, and even getting opportunities to play and sing for many gospel and Christian artists. Dominque began writing and producing music on his own in 2009 and has since released two albums, seven EP’s, and several singles. He also writes and produces for other artists around the country.

Dominque now holds the title for being the first black and lgbtq radio show host on La junta, Colorados radio station Thunder Media with the show “Soulful Expressions”  Dominque is also now the youngest board member of the Arkansas Valley Community Concert Association in La Junta, CO. Dominque also opened the first arts and entertainment production company and professional recording studio in Rocky Ford named ART MATTERS PRODUCTIONS, which has now been in business for two years, and in 2023 Dominque and two others organized and hosted the first Pridefest in Southeast Colorado. Dominque still has so much more in store and he can’t wait for you all to see it. 

Demi Harvey

Colorado Public Radio

Demi fell in love with music at an early age. Born in Colorado Springs, she was introduced to a variety of different genres thanks to her family and BET. That diverse music catalog inspired Demi to pursue a career in music so she could be the person shining the spotlight on Black and queer women in arts and entertainment. After moving to Denver, Demi hit the ground running, serving as the marketing director for the annual Underground Music Showcase festival. She went on to become an on-air radio host at Indie 102.3, Colorado Public Radio’s independent music platform. At Indie, Demi created Serve It!, a show dedicated to the music of queer artists. Throughout her journey in the music industry, she has dedicated her time to building community partnerships, organizing events, and learning from and uplifting fellow queer creatives. She also does a little DJing on the side under the stage name DJ Demigod. Some of Demi’s favorite artists include FKA twigs, Missy Elliott and Donna Summer.

Juan Gallegos



Juan C. Gallegos is a proud small business owner, advocate, connector, and visionary bilingual storyteller.  Born in Mexico, he moved to the US with his family at 12, a transition that shaped his perspective and drive. Juan grew up in rural Nebraska, where being queer and undocumented was a bit harder.  He spent his teenage years volunteering in immigrant integration and supporting adults learning English as a second language. Despite his lack of immigration status, and thanks to his community service efforts, Juan secured various scholarships to the University of Nebraska at Kearney and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Multimedia Communications and a minor in Spanish. Being directly impacted by different immigration policies and the exclusion immigrants face regarding documentation, Juan attended his first advocacy rally in the marches of 2006. Since then, he has formed part of efforts to change immigration policy to be more inclusive in Nebraska, Colorado, and at the federal level.

Throughout the years, people have trusted Juan to turn the most vulnerable parts of their lives into digestible and impactful stories. Juan has a natural ability to relate with those most marginalized. This ability has allowed him to support the efforts of connecting news outlets as large as Reuters and the New York Times or as local as the Pueblo Chieftain or the Greeley Tribune with the people directly impacted by the policies the news outlets wish to cover. Through his career in advocacy, Juan has worked on immigrant, LGBTQ, racial, reproductive, and environmental justice issues. His passion for justice led him to work for the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition and Conservation Colorado, the state’s largest immigrant and environmental advocacy organizations, respectively. He has served on the board of directors of Nebraskan’s for Peace, the Colorado Latino Leadership Advocacy & Research Organization, One Colorado, and Common Cause Colorado. He led and supported communications, organizing, and legal services teams during his service at different non-profit organizations. Juan also collaborated with and raised funds to support voter engagement and lobbying teams. Throughout his tenure, Juan ensured the endorsement and election of justice-minded candidates, including many women of color and people of diverse marginalized identities. His efforts worked to help elect people into elected offices ranging from city council and county boards to state legislature and even Congress.

In 2020, after over a decade of working in the non-profit sector, Juan decided to launch his own communications consulting firm, FactorX (Factor eh-kees, read in Spanish). His firm specializes in marketing and outreach to the Spanish-speaking diaspora of Colorado. Some of the most important Colorado institutions have entrusted Juan with communications and outreach projects, big and small. His past clients range from the Metropolitan State University of Denver, the University of Colorado, and the Colorado Department of the Treasury to various non-profit organizations and private businesses of all sizes. Juan enjoys an active lifestyle that includes running, riding his bike through Denver, and driving up to the mountains for a hike or camping. During his downtime, Juan loves to spend an evening at home in his Capitol Hill condo, petting his cat Luna or cooking a delicious meal for his friends.

Sofie Birkin

Freelance Illustrator


Sofie Birkin is a Denver based queer British illustrator and muralist. She creates powerful queer vignettes which push back against historical conventions of femininity. Working as a professional illustrator since 2016, her developed style of vibrant, dynamic compositions create complex cultural narratives that invite the viewer to imagine the characters’ expansive lives. She has created Pride campaigns and LGBTQ+ illustrations for Google, Apple, Starbucks, Benefit Cosmetics, Nike and the Body Shop, and has two published books and a permanent installation at Meow Wolf Denver.

Ryan Attig

Xcel Energy


Ryan provides executive level support to the Senior Vice President, System Strategy & Chief Planning Officer of Integrated System Planning (ISP) at Xcel Energy, where he has worked for 5 years, and graduated with a B.S. from Penn State University. He has held several different administrative positions for both private industry and state government organizations over the past 11 years. His current role at Xcel Energy encompasses a wide variety of tasks from heavy calendar and travel support, organization of  executive meetings/schedules, executive task tracking and organization, leading the Administrative Assistant team that supports the senior leadership within the organization, and coordination and planning of organization and company wide events.

Ryan also is an active participant in Xcel Energy’s LGBTQ+ Business Resource Group, Pride Alliance. Formerly the chair and co-chair for the BRG organization wide, he currently acts as the Colorado Chapters interim chapter lead and helps to plan and execute events and serves on the groups overall steering committee. Ryan has also assisted with Xcel Energy’s submission of the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index for the past several years. As part of his efforts in assisting the LGBTQ+ community in Colorado, he enjoys volunteering with Urban Peak, Metro Caring, and Project Angel Heart. In his leisure time, Ryan enjoys traveling with his husband and partner of 11 years, backpacking and hiking, cooking, watching the latest anime series, and gaming.

Jeff Attig

Terracon Consultants


Jeff is an Environmental Project Manager at Terracon Consultants, a nationwide employee-owned engineering and design firm where he has worked for over 8 years, and graduated with a B.S. in Environmental Resource Management from Penn State University. He has over 12 years of experience investigating and cleaning up environmental contamination in soil and groundwater across the country, including multiple Environmental Protection Agency Superfund sites, and is passionate about the environment and sustainability. As a proud member of the Colorado LGBTQ+ community, Jeff is a founding member of Terracon’s recently-launched LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group, PRISM. In his free time, Jeff enjoys exploring natural wonders in and out of Colorado with his loving husband and partner of 11 years, cooking, running, and taking care of their energetic fur-babies.

Samora Ka$h

SAMORA KA$H, Drag Artist | HAUS of KA$H


SAMORA KA$H, biracial drag artist based in Denver, Colorado, is a dynamic performer, host, producer, and musician. With experience opening for Kesha and Todrick Hall, she’s in high demand, traveling coast-to-coast for shows and appearances.

Born in Knoxville, TN, Samora has spent the last 6 years living in Denver, Colorado. Before making her move to The “Mile High City” she also lived in two major U.S. cities, Chicago and New York City.

Samora is known to be a “Mother” in many forms. While she may be a Haus Mother to “REINA KA$H” in The HAUS of KA$H, Samora has also taken on other “motherly roles” by providing spaces for new entertainers to break into the Denver Drag scene. She has always believed in opening doors for others in the same way doors have been opened for her.

Over the last four years, Samora has dedicated her time, attention, and efforts to building her business and brand from the ground up. From a young age, performing has been Samora’s passion. Today, she is living out her biggest dreams in real time. While being a self-made entrepreneur has not been easy, Samora has proven time and time again how far you can go if you continue to believe in yourself with no limitations.

What is Samora’s mission? Spreading love, helping others be their most authentic selves, advocating against social injustices, and giving a voice to the voiceless.

Follow and Support SAMORA KA$H:






Brennan McNell



Brennan McNell is the Vice President of Corporate Relations at NGLCC, overseeing the development and management of corporate partnerships. With extensive experience in the banking and hospitality industries, Brennan has held key positions where he has demonstrated his ability to manage important relationships, create new programs and initiatives, and lead collaboration across different teams and organizational levels. He is dedicated to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, actively participating in various business resource group roles as a Diversity Council lead, LGBT Network Chair, and DEI Ambassador. Beyond his professional accomplishments, Brennan values making a positive impact in both his personal and professional life. In his free time, he enjoys exploring new destinations, whether it’s through scenic hikes, camping trips, or international adventures, and is always eager to immerse himself in new cultures and experiences.

Brandon Heald

Mosaic Design Studio


Brandon Heald, RA, AIA, LEED AP (he/him/his) is the architect, creator, and building expert behind Mosaic Design Studio, a research, technology, and social justice-focused architectural design and planning studio in Denver, Colorado. Brandon started Mosaic in October 2023. His unique “Mosaic Design Process” involves a humble research-driven collaborative approach, promoting community, social activism, sustainability, and universal design. Whether analyzing meditation and sanctuary spaces for acoustic and accessible design updates or creating a wellness master plan for a hospital campus, Brandon’s work has been almost exclusively rooted in understanding and caring for people all-too-often disregarded, injured, and marginalized by and within the environments he intends to create.

Brandon has over 14 years of combined experience as a construction law researcher, interior designer, architect, engineering coordinator, construction administrator, and project manager. He has worked on over 1 billion square feet of building and site planning, design, and construction projects in eight states, five countries, and three continents. 

Brandon and his husband Brian live in the West Washington Park neighborhood in Denver with their husky, Akira. As members of Congregation Rodef Shalom, they are active members in Denver’s Jewish community. In addition, Brandon volunteers with the Greening Jewish Institutions (GJI) team within The Colorado Jewish Climate Action (CJCA) group. Brandon and Brian are avid gamers and enjoy park outings, concerts, and hosting game nights with their friends.


Lizzie Freymuth

Señor Manuel Mexican Cuisine

Lizzie was born and raised in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Her family are the founders and operators of Señor Manuel Mexican Cuisine. Growing up in Colorado Springs, a largely white town, Lizzie’s Mexican culture and the culture of small business were pivotal to her mixed race life experiences. As a young adult, she spent her education studying Liberal Arts, History, and Ethnic Studies, and upon completion of her degrees returned home to aid her mom and uncle in running and managing the family business.

She identifies proudly as a Latinx queer woman. Lizzie has spent time doing advocacy work for humanitarian and immigration rights, as well as worked with the communities of those experiencing homelessness and the LGBTQIA+ community. With aspirations of being an author, she also spends her free time enjoying many forms of art and creative expression while she’s not playing her favorite role of Tía Zee.

Her first “job” at the restaurant was to put away clean dishes at the ripe age of seven. She has since worked every job there from line cook to front of house manager. Señor Manuel’s was founded in1970 by Lizzie’s maternal grandparents, Manuel and Lucy Hernandez. With the help of their three children, and eventual grand and great grandchildren, the Hernandez family was able to create an almost 54 year old communal hub in Colorado Springs. It is the pride of both Lizzie and her family to be known as the place “where the locals go” and to be a multigenerational celebration space for numerous and diverse families of Colorado.

Hayley Bowen

Atlas Behavior Consulting

Hayley Bowen is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) with a unique background in Applied Behavior Analysis and Physical Therapy. Driven by a passion for heart-led ABA services, Hayley founded Atlas Behavior Consulting to provide holistic Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) that takes into consideration the entire child and their family. Recognizing the importance of comprehensive care, Hayley and her team incorporate breathwork techniques for self-regulation. Hayley is currently undergoing yoga teacher training to further enhance the support offered to both her team and patients. Hayley is committed to providing a safe and supportive ABA experience for all patients and a nurturing and inclusive workplace for all employees.

In her free time, Hayley enjoys spending time with her partner, Tori, and their two dogs, Oakley and Lincoln. An avid outdoor enthusiast, Hayley loves hiking, mountain biking, snowboarding, and camping in the mountains.

Through her dedication to holistic ABA and inclusive practices, Hayley strives to make a positive impact on the lives of the families and children she serves.

Reginald 'Reggie' Nubine Jr.

Denver Gay Lesbian Flag Football Team


Reginald “Reggie” Nubine Jr. is the Commissioner of the Denver Gay and Lesbian Flag Football League (DGLFFL), whose mission is to foster community through sport and to promote positive social and athletic enjoyment of flag football among the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and straight allies living in the greater Denver area. As Commissioner, Reggie is responsible for leading the organization, coordinating game days, various types of programming, and speaking on behalf of the league’s nine-person board of directors. Starting in 2008, as a few friends playing football at Cheeseman Park; the DGLFFL has grown to over 300 members, players, referees, and board members. It is one of the largest Gay Sports Leagues in the City of Denver, and one of the largest Gay Flag Football Leagues in the country. Reggie was elected as the league’s first Black Commissioner in Fall of 2023, and began his term in January of 2024. As Commissioner, Reggie is responsible for ensuring the success of the league and that its membership has a great playing experience.

Outside of his volunteer position as Commissioner of the DGLFFL, Reggie is a senior city attorney in in the Prosecution and Code Enforcement (“PACE”) section of the Denver City Attorney’s Office. In this role, he advises City departments matters related to business licensing, and provides legal advice to all city agencies on cannabis issues. Additionally, he represents the City in administrative hearings and civil litigation relating to appeals of agency determinations, advises on criminal prosecution, and drafts legislative and administrative policy.

Some of the achievements that he takes the most pride in include: overhauling the City’s marijuana code to provide for, among other things, a licensing scheme rooted in social equity; providing guidance to Denver citizens and businesses about the language and effect of public health orders related to COVID-19; and, defending the City in the denial of a business license that adversely impacted its neighbors. As a resident of Denver, he enjoys getting to see in real time the effects of the policies that he has had a hand in creating.

Originally a Dallas native, Reggie received his undergraduate degree from Texas A&M where he double-majored in Forensic Science and Psychology, and his law degree from the University of Colorado Law School. Immediately after graduating from law school he began his career with the City as an attorney intern (or fellow) with PACE. Thereafter, he was hired on as an entry attorney and worked my way up to senior. He currently live in Denver with his partner, two dogs: Leo and Buddah, and two cats: Willow and Nike.

Ryan Morgan

Branch & Barrel Distilling


Ryan Morgan is the CEO and co-founder of Branch & Barrel, where he passionately promotes creating collaborative and enjoyable workplaces. With a focus on teamwork, Ryan ensures his employees and customers feel like part of the family. He is dedicated to fostering a supportive and vibrant work environment. He is beyond honored to have been nominated and awarded this recognition.


Curtis Halbach

Mountain Man Nut & Fruit Co.

Born and raised just north of Denver, in the suburbs of Northglenn, Colorado. Born as an only child to a single mother, he saw the value of hard work and the level of commitment it took to get things done and make sure they never went without. At just eight years old, Curtis started taking acting, modeling, dance and voice lessons. He eventually was signed with a local agency called Marble’s Kids Management and immediately started working for the next eight years, until the age of sixteen, when he decided to move on and finish high school.

Cut to 2013, Curtis and his mother, Kary, bought a retail franchise of Mountain Man Nut & Fruit Co. in his hometown of Northglenn. Just a year later, he decided to open a second location in Northfield Stapleton, all on his own. There, he worked seven days a week for two whole years, until deciding to close the doors and go back to their original store full time. Just a year after returning, Curtis and Kary purchased their second business together, called Basket World, which is a wholesale gift basket supply company. Then after just another year, they went into business for a third time with the purchase of Colorado Gift Baskets, which is an Ecommerce gift basket company that pertains to Colorado vendors specifically. With the growth of the businesses, Curtis has gotten more involved in charity work through donations each month via silent auctions to local charities and events and often donates food from his store to local food shares. Together with his mother, they have now had their store for over 11 years, a second store that lasted two years, another business for seven years and their latest business for the last six years, and he can’t wait to see what the future holds.


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Addison Herron-Wheeler

OUT FRONT Magazine

Addison Herron-Wheeler is co-publisher and editor-in-chief of OFM and one of the magazine’s co-owners alongside CEO and co-publisher Maggie Phillips. She is also managing editor of New Noise Magazine and a freelance music writer specializing in punk and metal. She is also bassist in several local metal bands and a published author of three books, one speculative fiction, one young adult, and one non-fiction. She lives in Denver with her partners and two cats and also enjoys making and selling unique upcycled earrings.

Kenny Burroughs

Denver Rental


Over the last twenty years I have had many facets to my career, from being a Realtor, Sales Director, Executive Director as well as property investor and manager. My business philosophy has always centered around doing the right thing and focusing on inclusivity. Not just for the LGBT community but everyone. However, as a member of the LGBT community I pride myself on transparently operating my business as gay owned. I am very honored that the LGBT Chamber of Commerce for Colorado has chosen to recognize my career. I look forward to continuing my support of this wonderful organization.