New prez for biz group


The board of directors of the local LGBT chamber of commerce this week approved the election of several new leaders.

The Independence Business Alliance board Monday night confirmed the election of president Evan Urbania, along with several other members of the executive committee and board.

Founding president Bill Gehrman decided not to run for another term this year, and Urbania, who has previously served as vice president and secretary, said he was eager to step into the position.

“I felt like this was really the right opportunity for me and for the organization,” he said. “I have personally benefited a lot from my involvement in IBA and seen my own business grow with the support of the organization, and I felt like this was a good time to give back to IBA.”

The board also approved executive committee members: first vice president C. Richard Horrow, second vice president Stephen Facenda, treasurer David Schellenberg, secretary Christine Proffitt and at-large executive member Jeanne McIntyre.

Newly elected board members include Mark Seaman and Jeremy Gussick. Members James McManaman, Brent Friedman, Janice Mahlmann and Howard Child departed the board.

Urbania, 31, is the co-founder of ChatterBlast Media, which offers social-media marketing and consulting services.

Urbania’s involvement with IBA stretches back to before its 2007 founding, as he was one of the members of the original steering committee that guided its launch and sat on the first board of directors.

“I’ve always been an entrepreneur, and I felt like fostering business in the community and among entrepreneurs was really important from a business perspective,” he said of his initial attraction to IBA.

In the past four years, IBA has grown to nearly 200 members.

Most recently, IBA launched its first-ever business luncheon, designed to become the organization’s signature event.

Urbania’s term, which starts July 1, is one year, but he is eligible for re-election. Gehrman’s board term expires next year.

Jen Colletta can be reached at [email protected].