All posts by inba-chamber

A Message from Charles Smaltz, INBA Membership Manager

Greetings INBA Members,

2017 has seen the need for INBA in the community, and for each other, underscored. With LGBT rights are being assaulted and questioned by the current administration in D.C., many in the LGBTQA community are more conscious than ever of the businesses, professionals, and places that welcome individuals as they are, and for who they are. As a member since 1995, I have watched INBA grow and change and I have found many of my most valuable friendships and business connections have come from INBA members.  “The FUN Chamber” as dubbed by current members is a place to be yourself in a safe space, reach out to the LGBTQA community, form lifetime friendships and partnerships, and work together to bring “all of who you are” to our community. In times like this, it’s good to know that INBA will continue to advocate for diversity and acceptance, and we will never stop working towards our vision: an economically robust and civically engaged community, here in the Inland Northwest and as far as we can spread our message.

It is INBA membership and directory renewal time! Many new and exciting opportunities are coming in 2018 for INBA members and the community. Additional events, workshops, sponsorship opportunities, a new INBA mobile app (see app features here), and custom front cover for members to feature their logo on the printed directory. Members can choose to keep a stack of their customized directories to hand out to their customers or have them distributed with the generic covers.

“Refer a friend or business contest” If you know of a business, professional or friend who would benefit from being in the printed directory, online directory and mobile app you can win a prize by introducing them to me! Introductions can be in person, by email or social media. The referrals must be true introductions and not “give my friend a call” introductions. All introductions that result in a new INBA membership will be entered into a drawing.  Prizes will include gift certificates for coffee, lunch, and even a night at the CDA Casino & Resort. There will be winners in October and November and referral introductions can be made immediately!

Please feel free to reach out to me to discuss your membership, referrals and all the new opportunities. I can meet with you in person or by phone.

Thank you,

Charles Smaltz, Membership Manager
509-455-3699 –  INBA Office
509-218-4054 – cell

INBA Directory App to launch in 2018!

INBA will be adding a mobile app to reach the region’s LGBTQA community. The mobile app will launch in 2018 to support the printed business directory and the online business directory. The app will provide these features:

 Key Features:

  • Easy Access to INBA member businesses

Free, user-friendly app will make it easy for smartphone users to access the directory

  • iOS & Android

Works on just about every device.

  • Enhanced Ad Network

Will provide several new advertising opportunities for members.

  • Usage Statistics

Ability to provide members data-driven ROI to ensure fair and quality advertisements, while making sure content is easy to find.

  • Geofencing

Location-based events provide additional advertising opportunitities.

  • Favorites

Allows users to quickly find new information about their favorite businesses.

  • Search

Helping members and the public find what they are looking for faster.

  • Ever-Evolving

As technology evolves, we will be able to tap into new technologies to enhance the overall INBA App experience.

More information on this great addition coming soon!


Spokane AIDS Walk: Saturday, September 30 2017

Join SAN and Spokane Regional Health District for the 2017 AIDS Walk

All funds raised benefit HIV/AIDS Education, Outreach & Advocacy programs of SAN – Spokane AIDS Network. Register Here.

Saturday 9/30 11 AM – 2 PM, Check-in and late registration is at 11 am & Walk at Noon

SRHD – Spokane Public Health Buiding – East parking lot
1101 W. College Ave

For more information on the walk, visit

Presented by SAN – Spokane AIDS Network in cooperation with SRHD – Spokane Regional Health District

INBA Statement on Charlottesville Protests

For Immediate Release
August 17, 2017
Media Contact: Marvo Reguindin, General Manager


The recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia shocked, saddened, angered, and disappointed many of us. Indeed, feelings across the spectrum were felt—and will continue to be—throughout the United States. Here, in the Inland Northwest, INBA reaffirms its commitment to advocate for the fairness, inclusivity, and equity for all individuals in the communities we serve. We believe that when businesses support and embrace diversity, the economy grows and our community thrives.

To achieve this, the right to assemble peacefully and freedom of speech must be upheld. While this applies to any and all citizens—and should continue to do so—we believe that there is a clear and distinct difference between expressing beliefs, values, and grievances, versus a call to harm fellow human beings. This disregard for human life is at the core of what several of the groups–namely the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and white nationalists—who participated in the protests, is at the core of their invocation. It is a malicious and hateful call to action that is unacceptable as a society, harmful for humanity, and detrimental to businesses and our economy.

Regardless of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status, our community is stronger together. As the region’s LGBT and ally chamber of commerce, INBA will continue to advocate on behalf of these individuals to create an economically robust and civically engaged community through the acceptance of diversity throughout our region.

Inland Northwest Business Alliance (INBA) is Spokane’s LGBTA Chamber of Commerce with members in Eastern Washington and North Idaho. INBA was established in 1994 with a charter group of 25 members as a 501(c)6 non-profit organization to network and socialize in a safe environment. INBA’s mission is to develop a prosperous business community by advocating LGBT and Ally business perspectives.


Click here to download a PDF of this Press Release

INBA Statement on Trump’s Ban on Transgender Service Members

August 1, 2017

A Statement from the INBA Board of Directors:

Last week, Donald Trump announced via Twitter that transgender Americans will no longer be allowed to serve in any capacity in the military, citing that the U.S. military “cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail”.  This reversal of the 2016 decision to allow transgender troops to serve openly, receive medical care, and change their gender identity in the Pentagon’s personnel system has understandably outraged members of the LGBT community and their allies. Continue reading INBA Statement on Trump’s Ban on Transgender Service Members

Melissa Ethridge Returns to Spokane

Singer, songwriter, guitarist, and LGBT activist Melissa Ethridge returns to Spokane to debut her new album MEmphis Rock and Soul. She will be appearing at the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox,  Friday, August 4th at 8:00 PM.

INBA writer Stacey Sampson is interviewing Melissa this week for an exclusive article for next Week’s INBA Newsletter. Get your tickets for next week’s show, and keep your eyes peeled for Melissa’s interview.

Trump Announces Ban on Transgender Service Members

Taking to Twitter early Wednesday morning, Trump announced that Transgender individuals will no longer be accepted for service in the United States Military. This decision comes after a decade of sweeping reforms under the Obama administration that removed bias against LGBT individuals serving in the military.

Inland Northwest Business Alliance has not yet released a formal statement on the matter, as we are still gathering information about the ban, which has not been enacted as official policy.

The Spokesman-Review published a front page article on 7/27, quoting multiple INBA members on their personal reactions. The following are excerpts from the full article:

Robbi Anthony, vice president of the Inland Northwest Business Alliance that supports LGBT-friendly firms in the region, said Trump’s announcement continued a trend pushing back on hard-fought victories for the community.

“Right after the election, there was a lot of fear about how this community could be impacted,” said Anthony, a local tech business owner and transgender woman. “This is the manifestation of one of those fears.”

Marvin Reguindin, general manager of the Inland Northwest Business Alliance, questioned where such a policy could end.

“We don’t feel that this is moving forward in any way,” said Reguindin, who’s been with the organization for two decades. “Gays and lesbians could be next on the list, as well as bisexuals, saying they should not serve in the military because of one thing or another. Will they roll back the role of women in the military?”


“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military,” Trump said in a series of tweets Wednesday morning. “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”

According to the New York Times, the announcement came amid a debate on Capitol Hill over the Obama-era practice of requiring the Pentagon to pay for medical treatment related to gender transition. The dispute has unfolded as Congress considers a nearly $700 billion spending bill to fund the Pentagon. Representative Vicky Hartzler, Republican of Missouri, has proposed an amendment that would bar the Pentagon from spending money on transition surgery or related hormone therapy, and other Republicans have pressed for similar provisions.

Estimates have placed the cost of gender-transition-related medical services for military personnel at .004% to .017% of all Department of Defense medical expenses. For clarification, that is only the percentage of the DoD medical expenses, not  the entire Department of Defense budget,  totaling $598 Billion in FY 2015. That places the cost of transgender service members’ medical costs at around  .000014% of all military spending.