For more than 30 years, Downtown Frederick Partnership has worked to make our community a better place. This city is our home, its residents are our neighbors and we recognize how fortunate we are to live and work here — a place that’s filled with energy, excitement, passion and drive, a place where no two people are exactly alike but we’re all dedicated to building a better tomorrow.
Much of our work revolves around Downtown Frederick’s small business community — the people and places that create the vibrant spirit that attracts so many of us to Frederick. When you shop or dine downtown, it’s so much more than a simple transaction. You’re a neighbor supporting a neighbor, a stranger turned friend, a favorite regular or a welcomed first-time visitor. Getting to know a business is pretty easy, just walk in the door and say hello. We wanted to expand that conversation and give our business owners a chance to introduce themselves by self-identifying in a new way on our website.
Using our new Business Diversity page, you now can search for businesses that are woman-owned, owned by a person of color, veteran-owned, LGBTQ+-owned, have an ASL-fluent staff member, and many other options.
When coming up with the initial list of categories, the Partnership consulted with the Frederick County Office of Economic Development’s Minority Business Division, the City of Frederick Department of Economic Development, The Frederick Center, UNESCO Body and Mind Wellness, the Asian American Center of Frederick and the businesses of Downtown Frederick. In addition to the provided categories, businesses also had the option to write in their own preferred identifiers. The Partnership spent several weeks offering owners the chance to provide this information for their business, but responses were not mandatory, and owners had the option to opt-out of including any unique identifiers for themselves or their business.
Since the Partnership’s work is focused on Downtown Frederick, our Business Diversity page includes only those retail businesses which are located within the Downtown Frederick commercial district, outlined here. For a directory of minority-owned businesses throughout Frederick County, visit discoverfrederickmd.com/mbv. To inquire about adding your business to our list, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Partnership recognizes that this is a critical time for community organizations to step outside of their own work and reevaluate the way they do business — to create an atmosphere that doesn’t just accept diversity, but demands it. We know that hard conversations need to continue in order for real change to happen. We’re proud of the way Frederick has come together to begin a dialogue for change and we look forward to a continued productive discussion in the days, weeks and months ahead.
At the same time, the Partnership wants to shine light on the wonderful diversity of businesses which call Downtown Frederick home. We want to celebrate and support our businesses and our neighbors who make Downtown Frederick our community. With the challenges of the pandemic, our small businesses need to be celebrated now more than ever before.