Category Archives: Chamber News

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!


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.

SBA Office of Advocacy to host regulatory roundtable in Cd’A

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Thursday July 13th, the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration will host a roundtable in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. The event will begin at 8:00 a.m. at the Best Western Plus.

The purpose of this event is to gain valuable insight into which specific federal regulatory burdens present the biggest barriers to small business growth. With these recommendations, Advocacy can better assist federal agencies in complying with President Trump’s directives to reduce burdensome regulations. Additionally, information compiled from this roundtable and others will help Advocacy generate a new report informing Congress and the public of the top regulatory issues for small businesses.  Continue reading SBA Office of Advocacy to host regulatory roundtable in Cd’A

Stories & Pictures from from Spokane’s Pride

By Paul Tiesse

Click here for the full photo album from Spokane Pride 2017

On June 10th, OutSpokane kicked off the 26th Pride parade in downtown Spokane with the theme of “May the Pride Be with You”. On a sunny day, more than 15,000 people enjoyed the parade, Rainbow Festival, an all-ages dance and ending the evening with fireworks.

At noon, the Spokane Dykes Who Bike kicked off the parade with a thunderous roar.

Following them, as has now become a tradition, was a military honor guard and what will become a new tradition a large rainbow flag carried by various community members.

The parade had the traditional entries such as various churches, social agencies, medical groups, Bears and Leather men, Spokane Lesbian group(FB) and politicians canvasing for votes. Entries that stood out included a LGBTA law section, Q-Law, LGBTQ Veterans and Active Duty Support, Veterans for Peace and the Salish School of Spokane.

The Spokane Fire Department was well represented as well as the Spokane Police Department, both showcasing their departments’ vehicle and equipment power. Reaching out for the LGBTA dollar were financial institutions and retailers JC Penny and Nordstrom.

Some of the largest groups that marched were from Planned Parenthood and Kaiser Permanente.

In this uncertain political environment, the Spokane Trans People group, N.O.W., NAACP were well represented. It would not be a parade without the Spokane Drag community and Royalty, and a large contingent from Nyne.

This year’s Community Grand Marshall was Jenny Seibert, Ally Grand Marshall Rose Wardian and Youth Grand Marshall Liam Boyd.

After the parade, there were large crowds at the Resource and Business Fair, the family friendly area, and the beer garden all located in the Lilac Meadow of Riverfront Park.

OutSpokane should be congratulated for all their hard work for another successful Pride Week.

Pride Across Washington

Seattle Pride gets the most attention in the Northwest, and Spokane’s Pride claims the prize for largest in the Inland Northwest, but it’s the smaller pride celebrations that deserve the most praise. In traditionally conservative areas, with a smaller population and fewer resources to organise and execute Pride celebrations, cities like Yakima, Coeur d’Alene, Tri-Cites, and Vancouver, WA are making sure the voices of their LGBTQA community are speaking out. Many from Spokane make plans to visit Seattle pride 2 weeks after Spokane’s, and we encourage everyone to visit the smaller Pride celebrations, to make the most of Pride Month.

Shout out to the city of Yakima for declaring their first ever official Pride Week! Continue reading Pride Across Washington

Scenes from Seattle: Pride Parade and PrideFest 2017

A pride flag waves atop the Space Needle. (Kjell Redal / The Seattle Times)

Seattle Times Reporter  curated a series of pictures, tweets, and stories from Seattle’s Pride celebrations on Saturday, June 25th. Check out the story at 

Another photo album (100+ images) from SeattleRefined really shows off the crowds, and the tens of thousands of supporters and parade participants celebrating in downtown Seattle on a beautiful sunny saturday.