The Desert Business Association (DBA), the Coachella Valley’s LGBTQ Chamber, will recognize recipients of the DBA Impact Awards, its annual event to honor business leaders, community leaders and organizations, at 5 p.m., Monday, July 24, in the Cascade Lounge at the Agua Caliente Casino Palm Springs. These recipients have been examples of strength and foresight in our communities.
This year’s recipients are:
- Business of the Year: Blackbook Bar, Palm Springs
- Business Person of the Year: Dan Gore, Oscar’s Palm Springs
- Outstanding Community Service Organization: Palm Springs Front Runners & Walkers
- Outstanding Community Service Leader: Ted Guice, G-Force Workout
The DBA will also recognize their recent LGBTQ Youth Educational Scholarship awardees.
Each was nominated by their peers and the community over the past month, and were selected for their dedication to positively benefitting our LGBTQ and ally communities.
“Each of these recipients have made positive impacts over this past year,” said David Powell, the DBA’s executive director. “They raised money to support local nonprofits, provided services for some of our at-need community members, kept us physically and mentally motivated, and conveyed an overall strong commitment to and for our communities.”
There will also be special recognition for LGBTQ youth from across the Coachella Valley who will be receiving college scholarships. These awards are presented through funds raised by Desert Business Association members, and distributed through our partner, Safe Schools Desert Cities.
“Our businesses and our communities have learned how to be resilient over these past years, and they continue to share their resources and expertise for the benefit of all who believe in diversity, equity and inclusion,” Powell said. “These awards are just one mechanism to recognize and celebrate that.”
Tickets are $99, and includes a buffet dinner and no-host cocktails.
About Desert Business Association
The Desert Business Association (DBA) is the only LGBTQ chamber in the Coachella Valley. Established in 1979, it helps LGBTQ and allied businesses promote and develop their business through networking and community events, educational seminars and promotional opportunities across the region. With over 300 members, DBA is focused on promoting diversity, equity and inclusion for our LGBTQ and other diverse businesses in the Coachella Valley. It is the only local affiliate chamber of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce; www.DesertBusiness.org; @DesertBusiness
About the Awardees:
Blackbook Bar — Since 2017, Blackbook has been an anchor of the Arenas District bar scene. Owner Dean Lavine has continuously supported the LGBTQ and ally communities through events from pet adoptions to diverse community conversations. He and his staff continue to show that “Everyone is Welcome at Blackbook.”
Dan Gore of Oscar’s Palm Springs – With events starring both local performers and Hollywood icons, and regular drag queen brunches and Sunday tea dances, Oscar’s Palm Springs has become a much-sought-after destination under owner Dan Gore. He also uses his business and his resources to give back to the community by hosting events that help others. This includes free breakfasts each Christmas Day for anyone experiencing food insecurity. Dan, his staff and many volunteers celebrate and share a morning feast to ensure everyone can enjoy some holiday cheer.
Palm Springs Front Runners & Walkers – For more than 25 years, this group has been bringing people together most mornings to get physical exercise and mental interaction. With about 300 members, the group welcomes runners and walkers of all ages and abilities, with both LGBTQ participants and allies making their way around Palm Springs. But they also are known for their philanthropy, raising thousands of dollars of needed funds for local nonprofit organizations through numerous efforts, including their annual hallmark event, the Palm Springs Pride 5k Run and Walk.
Ted Guice of G-Force Workout – Realizing the impacts that the pandemic had on local gym restrictions, this long-time fitness trainer decided to help his clients by starting a socially-distanced morning training class outside at Ruth Hardy Park in Palm Springs. He assembled a group of dedicated people, known as the “G-Force Workout Crew,” who wanted some fun and fast-paced movement. He then went further and invited anyone wanting to join each morning … for free. Three years later, Ted Guice still leads these weekday morning sessions—for no charge.