What Happens When A Community Thrives
“...last night I was with with hundreds of local businesses, encouraging us all to Think Local First. We must support local business.”
In 2018, Think Local First DC turned 12 years old, having all the growth and challenges of adolescence, which ultimately made us stronger. As the only business organization dedicated to educating, advocating for, and connecting the DC local business economy, we end the year proud to say we continued to do so. Local independent businesses are the backbone of our economy and make daily decisions that address issues of economic, environmental, racial, and social equity. They are better positioned to respond to the needs of our community and are inherently tied to the future of Washington, D.C.
We’re grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve the businesses that make DC thrive!
Our 2018 Highlights:
The 4th annual DC Brau Holiday Marketplace during Thanksgiving Weekend was an at-capacity hit, generating over $90,000 in local economic activity in a single day.
- We promoted and partnered with 50 individual efforts, organizations, and government agencies to spread the word and spotlight local events and initiatives.
We hired our first Managing Director and increased our board membership to include six local business owners and nonprofit leaders: WACIF, Steadfast Supply, Tenleytown Trash, GMP LLP, DC Library and DC Bar Pro Bono.
In partnership with Pepco, we hosted a Luncheon for our 2017 Local First Awards winners and Pepco Executives Senior Leadership to continue the discussion around building a sustainable DC small business community. In attendance were Lee's Flower Shop, Upshur Street Books, Tightshift Laboring Cooperative, Bailiwick Clothing, Potter’s House, City First Bank, and Pepco Holdings’ Regional President, Chief of Staff, VP of Corporate Relations, and General Counsel.
TLF collaborated with Cureate Connect and Dreaming Out Loud on “Grown in DC” to educate 27 food entrepreneurs over nine months on the School of Food curriculum, culminating in a pitch competition in June 2018 at Union Market. Five food entrepreneurs pitched and sampled their food for the public. The winner was Custom Cuisine, who won a pop-up space at Union Market; 3-month product placement at Good Food Markets; and marketing and promotion via Think Local First DC and Cureate Connect for a month. This is further evidence that a food business can grow their own food, learn how to market, and sell it all in DC!
Think Local First DC has big things in store for 2019: the return of the Local First Awards, Builder Dinner, The Employer Advocate Quarterly Seminars, DCRA In Your Neighborhood, Workforce For All program, along with many new partnerships and programs!
Thank you for your dedication in 2018. We look forward to working with all of you in 2019! We can’t do it without your help. Join in, say yes, and... contribute $20.19 today!