TransWork wants to expand entrepreneurship opportunities for Philly's transgender community - Generocity Philly

Purpose

Jul. 27, 2017 1:50 pm

TransWork wants to expand entrepreneurship opportunities for Philly’s transgender community

The program is being spearheaded by Marcus Iannozzi of Message Agency in partnership with the Independence Business Alliance, the LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce for the Greater Philadelphia region.

The winner of Independence Business Alliance's 2017 PNC LGBT Business Award.

(Photo via twitter.com/Think_IBA)

In an action that seems almost normal in today’s topsy-turvy political climate, the president sent out tweets yesterday that again sparked anger and confusion among the transgender community.

The tweets, which apparently even caught the Secretary of Defense off-guard, announced that transgender people would be banned from serving in the military. Since the tweets were published, though, the chairman of the joint chiefs of the military Marine Gen. Joe Dunford has stated there will be “no modifications” to the military’s transgender policy, at least until any official word comes from the Secretary of Defense.

As with any ban the White House has announced and implemented since Trump has been in office, Philadelphia’s residents have made it clear their opposition to such actions and voiced their constitutional rights in refusing such policies.

Zach Wilcha, the executive director of the Independence Business Alliance (IBA), Philly’s Chamber of Commerce that specifically serves the LGBTQ business community and its allies, has so far been encouraged with the city’s responses to such bans and believes it will be much of the same for the recent one aimed at the trans community.

“The majority of Americans, in particular Philadelphians, I think, believe that transgender Americans are a vital part of every facet of American life,” he said.

"Philadelphians, I think, believe that transgender Americans are a vital part of every facet of American life."
Zach Wilcha

IBA has been committed to providing opportunities, access and resources to LGBTQ professionals for the past 10 years. And it was at its 10th anniversary celebration this past May where it announced TransWork, a new initiative dedicated to increasing and expanding work and entrepreneurship opportunities for the transgender community in Philadelphia.

From our Partners

The program, spearheaded by Marcus Iannozzi, founder and principal of socially focused web development firm Message Agency, has two components: connecting transgender people with supportive employers and promoting transgender entrepreneurship.

While there are similar services around the country like the ones TransWork plans to offer, Wilcha said this kind of support system is innovative in how it will directly connect trans people with the employers who are already part of the IBA Chamber. The program is in its formative stages at the moment, but Wilcha said employers who are interested in being a part of the program are already “lining up at the door.”

The plans in developing and finalizing TransWork for the rest of the summer include holding focus groups with potential employers, trans community leaders and the trans community in general, in addition to building out a dedicated advisory board to ensure that trans voices are included throughout the formation process.

Wilcha said we can expect some sort of “soft launch” of TransWork at this year’s Trans Health Conference in September, with a more official launch event, via a luncheon and job fair combination event, by the end of the year.

In regard to recent national events, Wilcha doesn’t want to speculate as to what could possibly transpire, but he remains dedicated in ensuring LGBTQ folks, and specifically transgender people, that there’s no need to be uncertain.

“We want people to know that there is a safe space for business owners and LGBTQ professionals, as well as trans professionals,” he said. “Not only are we here to provide them connections, we want to make sure that by having them come out, it’s going to be better for business generally, especially in the Philadelphia area.”

-30-
LEAVE A COMMENT

From our Partners

How ’bout them (do-gooder) Eagles?

ChickTech Philadelphia is bringing free tech education to local girls

To diversify hiring, let employees with intellectual disabilities demonstrate their skills

SPONSORED

Generocity Philly

For immigrants, civic engagement is essential to success

1330 N. 5th Street,Philadelphia, PA 19122

http://www.bicycletransit.com/

Brand Ambassador

Apply Now
Philadelphia, PA

Knight Foundation

Summer of 2018 Paid Internship at Knight Foundation

Apply Now
4355 Orchard Street, Philadelphia, PA 19124

Rebuilding Together Philadelphia

Development Director

Apply Now

NBC10 and Telemundo62 are giving away $225K to innovative nonprofits

Power Moves: City Hall shakeups, nonprofit departures and a new poet laureate

Edtech orgs: Apply for this AT&T accelerator

SPONSORED

Generocity Philly

This Philly Venezuelan wants to encourage ‘participation, not isolation’ among immigrants

Philadelphia

William Penn Foundation

Program Associate, Creative Communities

Apply Now
Philadelphia

Fairmount Ventures Inc

Project Manager

Apply Now
Center City Philadelphia

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia

Coordinator, Member Engagement

Apply Now

Sign-up for regular updates from Generocity