LGBTQ+-focused businesses

Beatrice Simpkins

Beatrice Dolores Simpkins is an alum of Rutgers University-Newark. 

In 2016, Ms. Simpkins became a Rutgers University 250 Fellow – receiving a medal at the “A Day of Revolutionary Thinking”, the culminating event of Rutgers’ 250Th birthday celebration.

She serves as the pro-bono Executive Director of the Newark LGBTQ Community Center and is the Chief Program Officer for The Partnership for the Homeless, located in New York City. In 2021, Ms. Simpkins received the Equality Leadership Award from Garden State Equality and the LGBTQ-Police Community Partnership Award...

Perris Straughter

Perris Straughter is the Director of Planning for Queens and Staten Island for the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development. He is charged with leading the planning activities related to affordable housing development and preservation for these boroughs, the City’s two largest by land area. Previously he was Supervising Planner in the City of Newark, where he coordinated the development approvals process for the City. During his tenure in Newark Perris also managed a $20 million commercial revitalization program and served as the coordinator of Newark's mural program,...