June 19, 2022
Celebrating Inclusion and Diversity During LGBTQ+ Pride Month
PR & Content Manager
The first LGBTQ+ Pride march – officially known as the Christopher Street Liberation Day March – took place in New York City on June 28th 1970, and was spearheaded by a group of activists that included Craig Rodwell, Fred Sargeant, Ellen Broidy, Linda Rhodes, and Brenda Howard, for the first anniversary of the Stonewall uprising.
Since this turning point in LGBTQ+ history, the movement has spread across the globe in support of the uprising’s original mission: civil rights for the LGBTQ+ community. Currently, nearly 60 Pride parades take place in June and July across various countries around the world as part of LGBTQ+ Pride Month celebrations. Participation in a parade gives the opportunity for expression of celebration, joy, and triumph but also the voice to express the continued fight for those injustices and inequalities that exist among us.
This year, we were thrilled to sponsor Queen City Pride which took place on June 18th in Greater Manchester, New Hampshire. In addition to marching in the Pride parade, we set up a Loftware tent, purchased lots of great giveaways for the community, and distributed small postcards with information about our company and open roles.
Above: The Loftware team at Queen City Pride, June 18 2022
The theme for this year’s parade in Greater Manchester was “All Welcome,” so we asked a collection of Loftware LGBTQ+ employees and allies what a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment means to them and why it’s so important today.
Bob O’Connor, President and CEO: “At Loftware, we embrace and respect our diversity and inclusive culture. It's important that our people feel safe and secure in always being who they are and know that they are supported along the journey of whom they want to be.”
Victoria Armstrong, SVP, Head of People: “Inclusion is very important to me personally, having lived and worked in different countries and cultures. Working in a global company requires the ability to embrace diversity, including diverse perspectives and experiences. This does not exist without inclusion. Research shows that when employees feel included, they feel a sense of belonging. This improves their overall experience and drives innovation, collaboration, and strong performances. Employees that feel included are also more likely to be positively engaged within the company.”
Above: The Loftware tent at Queen City Pride, June 18 2022
Adam Plante, Executive Assistant: “In an ever-changing world that has thrown so many curveballs recently, we need inclusion and love for all more than ever. Every person deserves to experience the wonderfulness of being in love, no matter the circumstances around that. Being a strong advocate and member of this community, I can say that Loftware is a company that empowers me to show my true colors and not be afraid to be who I am. As one openly gay supporter once stated, nobody in America should ever be afraid to walk down the street or walk into work holding the hand of the person they love. Peace and love to all.”
Jen Rhode, Director Human Resources: “All people deserve the right to love who they choose and to have access to basic human rights, without prejudice or hate. Pride is a time to come together as a community, show support, and continue the discussion around equality for all. One of our core values at Loftware is “Take Good Care” and to do so, we make sure that we live that value every day. We will keep fighting the good fight, so everyone feels safe, secure, and loved, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, or sexual identity.”
Laura Hindley, PR and Content Manager: “It’s always the right time to focus on diversity and inclusion — but this year more than ever. Because the work is far from done. As Harvey Milk once said, all people - regardless of sexual orientation or identity - deserve a safe and supportive environment in which to achieve their full potential. Whether you view Pride as a celebration, a protest, or something in between, it’s important to march for those who cannot.”
Josh Thorp, Sales Development Supervisor – Americas: “To me a safe, supportive, and inclusive environment means that we all have the freedom to be our truest self, without fear or worry of belittlement or persecution. Today the world makes it easy to see the differences in one another, which is why it’s more important than ever to accept each other for our similarities. We are all human at the end of the day.”
Chris Mason, Mid Market Account Manager: “A safe, supportive, and inclusive environment to me is an environment where people are free to be who they are and are celebrated for it. It’s also an environment that holds itself true to the fact our stakeholders, employees, investors, and customers come in many shapes, sizes, sexualities, religions, and ethnic make-ups and this diversity makes us stronger. It’s an environment that is tolerant of ideas, welcoming of differences, and willing to have difficult conversations with those who don’t quite understand the modern world. It’s important today, as the world is more diverse now than ever before!”
Learn more about our company culture and open roles here.