Steve Adkins shifted from banking to hospitality, and now runs Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce
Steve Adkins is where the business world meets gay politics. He gave up a career in banking in California and came to South Beach 13 years ago and lived out his dream of running a bed and breakfast. There, in charge of his own small business, he felt much freer to be himself than he was in banking, where he kept the fact that he is gay "in the closet."
At about the time he came to Miami Beach, the Miami-Dade Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce was forming from two grassroots groups that had sprung up years earlier to represent the growing gay and lesbian segment of the local business community.
As a local gay merchant, Mr. Adkins got involved with the chamber. But it wasn't until the head of the organization stepped down several years later and he stepped into that role that he found his current calling.
Perhaps like never before, Mr. Adkins can have an impact on the causes that matter most to him: building business relationships, closing social gaps, working for equality, assisting the marginalized, and making his community a better place to live.
"It's a matter of helping people understand," he said, "that, at the end of the day, we're all the same and the dollar is still green no matter who spends it."
During an interview with Miami Today reporter Scott Blake at the chamber's offices in a building that once housed Miami Beach City Hall, Mr. Adkins spoke about his life, his job and the organization he leads.
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