Although the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) has emerged as a highly divisive topic these days, the attention this legislation has sparked on the LGBT workforce has planted the seed for a positive trend towards recognizing this vital economic force in the U.S. Media has inherently changed attitudes that were otherwise based on hearsay. Within the LGBT business community, the Gay Financial Network (GFN.com) pioneered the first online media outlet to start the ball rolling.
Online Gay Financial Network returns,
aking use of the most up-to-date ‘Web 2.0’ technologies.
Taking advantage of the current trend, GFN.com is re-launching their financial portal. “There was no particular event or circumstance. We felt that the GLBT business environment has been moving in a more positive direction recently. As such, the timing was right to re-invest in GFN and update the technology, content and functionality of the site,” stated Founder and CEO Walter Schubert.
It was in 1998 that Schubert initiated the Gay Financial Network to serve the financial concerns of the gay and lesbian community. Although LGBT business has existed for many years, at the time, there was no designated media to serve this niche. Schubert sought to put a face on the professional side of this important segment of our economy. Through the years, the site has been successfully supported by major brands including IBM, MetLife Bank, Wellpoint and E-Loan.
In addition to GFN, Schubert is the also the founder, chairman and CEO of The Schubert Group, LLC, a global management consulting firm. His incredible foresight led him to become the first openly gay member of the New York Stock Exchange and a Founding member of The National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.
Now with Web 2.0 at the forefront of every entrepreneurial mind, GFN returns in full force after a brief lull in activity to harness the wave of new technology and user interfaces.
The site will feature a newly designed site that includes an ongoing blog by Schubert, video upload capabilities, multiple voices and cross-linking to major content sharing sites. GFN will also implement user-generated content as well in keeping with current technology.
After eight years online, GFN has developed a sizeable amount of desirable web traffic. The staff quotes a monthly unique visit total of nearly 100,000. Their visitor facts promote the majority of their subscribers between 35-54 and 98 percent have a college degree. Forty two percent earn more than $50,000 per year and 38 percent are middle managers.
According to Schubert, the re-launch in Web 2.0 would not be complete without including strategic partnerships with other members of the gay media. The identities of these partners have yet to be mentioned, but judging by the leadership abilities of this gay business icon, GFN is sure to be a comprehensive and interactive resource to inspire, educate and grow the financial pursuits of their intended audience.
“We’re very pleased and excited about the design and functionality of the new GFN.com which will give visitors many opportunities to learn about and interact with the financial issues that affect their lives,” added Schubert.
— Reprinted with permission from Echelon Magazine, www.echelonmagazine.com.
Michael Lamb is the publication’s CEO and editor.