The Nashville LGBT Chamber of Commerce is the premier advocate of the Greater Nashville Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender business community, representing over 150 businesses in Nashville and the surrounding area. The Nashville LGBT Chamber of Commerce advances common business interests, economic growth, and equality in the workplace and society for its LGBT members, businesses, and allies by providing educational, networking, and community building opportunities.
Ron Sanford has been an icon of the Nashville LGBT community for over twenty years. He is heavily involved in activism and charity fund raising for LGBT causes, and is often at the center of major events that serve and unite those in our community. His company, Ron Sanford Productions, provides wedding/event planning, entertainment, and hospitality to clients in Nashville and throughout the country. But he is recognizable to many of us as a central figure in the production of notable events and venues year after year, including:
● LGBT Chamber of Commerce Excellence in Business Awards
● VIP venue of Nashville Pride
● Miss Gay U.S. of A.
Ron has been an active member in the Nashville LGBT Chamber of Commerce since he joined two years ago. Ron says he “can’t say enough about what the Chamber has done for me and my company. The connections I’ve made through the Chamber have helped me grow from restarting my small company a few years ago, to meeting and doing business with Fortune 500 Companies.”
The next collaboration between Ron Sanford Productions and the Nashville LGBT Chamber of Commerce is just around the corner. Ron once again is producing TASTE. He says, “TASTE offers something for everyone.” As an event planner, Ron loves the opportunity to sample different restaurants and caterers in town so that he might hire them to cater his events. This is especially helpful if his clients have special requests for certain types of cuisine. He says it’s a great exposure for vendors that can showcase their specialties to potential customers they might not otherwise reach. And, of course, the rest of us get to enjoy the afternoon with friends sampling an array of local food and drink vendors in one place! TASTE is the largest annual fundraiser for the Nashville LGBT Chamber Foundation. Ron is pleased to help out in return for all the benefits that membership has provided him and his business in the last two years.
Recently, Ron is looking beyond Nashville both in terms of his Chamber of Commerce affiliation and the clients he hopes to attract. This year, the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce certified Ron Sanford Production as an LGBT Business Enterprise. Ron attended his first national NGLCC International Business and Leadership conference in Las Vegas last month. He says it was a wonderful experience. As an events coordinator, he appreciated that the event itself was executed very well, in a great venue with delicious food and lots of activities for those in attendance. More importantly, Ron says, “It was an incredible experience for someone in small business looking for larger contracts. I was able to connect with corporations that want to partner with minority business owners like me. Corporations such as Sony and American Airlines, to name a few.” Ron met with attendees informally at cocktail gatherings and other events. He is already looking forward to the conference next year, now that he knows he can schedule meetings with prospective clients ahead of time. He sees opportunities to partner with corporations throughout the county that may choose Nashville as their next destination for sales conferences and conventions. And, Ron says, “If I can get cozy with one of those larger corporations, they may hire me for events everywhere.”
He already travels nationally for events for some of his clients, and plans to leverage Chamber connections to expand those opportunities. Ron just bought a condo in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and plans to grow his business down there as well. He envisions destination weddings and other events in the beautiful locale. His first big party is set for May, 2018. Ron Sanford Productions is about to go international!
After you attend the LGBT Chamber’s TASTE event on Sunday, November 19th, Ron invites readers to attend “An Evening with Scott Hamilton and Friends,” on November 19th, which offers guests an ice show at Bridgestone Arena and then dinner and dancing at the Omni (https://scottcares.org/events/evening-scotthamilton-friends). Another Ron Sanford Productions event to look for next spring is the Tennessee Kidney Foundation Gala, also at the Omni, in April, 2018. For tickets, check http://www.tennesseekidneyfoundation.org in the coming months.
Contact information: (615) 800-2425 / firstname.lastname@example.org