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    Looking Back and Moving Forward – Spending With Purpose

    By Brandon Miller, CFP–

    I remember my first ever Pride celebration, and while it pales in comparison to the party that San Francisco puts on every year, it is an important core memory for me as it symbolized what community coming together could mean. Sure, there were parties, thumping music, fabulous outfits and all of that, but there was more. I just felt it, BELONGING.

    It was exhilarating. It was also scary. Being openly gay in small town Kentucky took some gumption. Since that Pride way back when, it’s been a priority for me to build and celebrate my community, now here in San Francisco. That may be watching my boys march in the parade or hosting my own party, or passing out ice cream to clubgoers at the stroke of midnight. Sometimes all of the above! I need to spend the day recreating that sense of belonging I felt when I got my Pride cherry popped.

    The theme for this year’s is Looking Back and Moving Forward. I imagine when that theme was selected it wasn’t necessarily with the renewed attack on LGBTQ+ rights in mind. What should be a joyous time of celebration must serve dual purpose as a call to action. I hope you’ll join me?

    As a financial advisor who’s been serving in this community and is a proud member of the community, it’s been extra important for me to acknowledge how far our rights have come but also that there is so much more work to get done—especially with the recent attacks on our rights with a whopping 124 total bills introduced in 2023 thus far that focus on restricting LGBTQ+ people, stopping their freedom of expression, the livelihood of transgender students, and basic access to health care for gender dysphoria.

    In 46 states, these anti-LGBTQ+ bills are specifically targeting young transgendered folks and it’s clear that we are entering a new era of attacks on our communities. In 2019 there were no state laws banning transgender youths from participating in sports and now in 2023 there are bans in 19 states. Unthinkable, right? The goal in mind is to force LGBTQ+ people out of the public life. Why, you ask? Hate and fear. It’s key that we understand the source of the attacks so we can work to fight them.

    The current state of our communities’ rights is scary. What can we do when we see our rights are being threatened? Fight back! This can mean through traditional political and human rights channels but also the little bits you can do day to day, not just during June, to make a difference and lift up the voices of others.


    Be present in your community. Use your gay dollars to spend at gay or gay friendly places. Don’t give your money to companies or states that are actively working to erode progress. You can seek out Certified LGBT businesses as designated by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce. It’s that easy to make a difference.  


    There are so many dedicated organizations locally and worldwide that are in the fray every day working to protect us. Find one or more that resonate with you and get involved. You’d be surprised how fulfilling volunteering is! Studies suggest that those who volunteer are happier. Yay for serotonin!

    Don’t Have Time? Give Money

    Have enough money to share some with worthy causes? Do it. Make a one-time donation. A recurring one is even better and can really help cash flow for nonprofits. Setting up a donor advised fund is even better. Build your legacy plan to give back to the communities and causes that are special to you.

    Speak Your Truth and Live Loudly

    Be your authentic self, unapologetically the unique gay little snowflake you are. We gain strength from numbers and representation. What makes a hate-filled, fearful bully mad? You happily living your best life!

    Allyship and Asking for Help

    We need our wonderful allies side by side with us on the fight. Ask for help, encourage them to share with their networks the challenges ahead and what they can do year-round and not just in June. We are truly all in this together.

    Let’s show the world that we are not afraid to put into the work to keep marching forward. Happy Pride!

    Brio does not provide tax or legal advice, and nothing contained in these materials should be taken as such. The opinions expressed in this article are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual or on any specific security. It is only intended to provide education about the financial industry. To determine which investments may be appropriate for you, consult your financial advisor prior to investing. Any past performance discussed during this program is no guarantee of future results. Any indices referenced for comparison are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly. As always please remember investing involves risk and possible loss of principal capital; please seek advice from a licensed professional.

    Brio Financial Group is a registered investment adviser. SEC Registration does not constitute an endorsement of Brio by the SEC nor does it indicate that Brio has attained a particular level of skill or ability. Advisory services are only offered to clients or prospective clients where Brio Financial Group and its representatives are properly licensed or exempt from licensure. No advice may be rendered by Brio Financial Group unless a client service agreement is in place.

    Brandon Miller, CFP®, is a financial consultant at Brio Financial Group in San Francisco, specializing in helping LGBT individuals and families plan and achieve their financial goals.