The Denver Business Journal announces 12 Outstanding Women in Business for 2013

DBJ’s Outstanding Women in Business Communications, Media and Public Relations Winner Timi Aguilar of Aguilar Public Relations

The Denver Business Journal honored 12 distinctive women during their annual Outstanding Women in Business awards luncheon held earlier today at the Grand Hyatt hotel in downtown Denver. Winners in the categories of architecture, engineering and construction; banking, finance and accounting; communications, media and public relations; education, government and nonprofits; health care; large business owner; law; Mile High Leaders; real estate; small business owner; technology and telecommunications were announced, as well as a special lifetime achievement recipient.

Timi Aguilar, Principal of Castle Rock, Colorado-based Aguilar Public Relations was this year’s winner in the category of communications, media and public relations. Timi’s fellow finalists include Meg VanderLaan, Vice President of Corporate Communications for MWH Global in Broomfield, Colorado, and Megan Moye Zacher, founding partner and designer with Zebra Inc. in Denver, Colorado.

The winner of the lifetime achievement award for this year was Jane Miller, CEO of Charter Baking in Boulder Colorado makers of Rudi’s Organic and Gluten-free baked goods.  Ms. Miller has held an executive position at every company she’s worked for — Frito-Lay, Bestfoods and H.J. Heinz in London, to name a few. She is also a mentor and board member for the Boulder-based Unreasonable Institute, which connects entrepreneurs from around the world with successful mentors in business, technology, social change and other areas.

A full breakdown of today’s event, including expanded information on all of the very talented finalists in all the categories, will be available on The Denver Business Journal web site Friday.


Out Front Colorado enjoys a brand renaissance thanks to change in ownership

Out Front Colorado has been the go to publication for the LGBT community for more than 35 years. For those of you that don’t know, earlier this year the newspaper changed ownership for the first time since its inception in 1976. Learn more about the new guard on duty at Out Front, and how this historic publication has been revived, and continues to survive the onslaught of digital media. Read more here.

Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips breaks silence

Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips and his business marquee

The man behind the Lakewood Colorado bakery scandal has finally broken his silence. Jack Phillips, the owner of Lakewood’s Masterpiece Cakeshop, told Denver local CBS affiliate KCNC-TV that he has no problem with lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) customers or staff members – but nonetheless does not support gay marriage.

“If it came to that point, we would close down the bakery before we would compromise our beliefs, so that may be what it comes to,” Phillips said. “We’ll see.”

As posted in our blog previously, Phillips’ choices to deny service to a same-sex couple and his subsequent statements have been called into question. The man himself seems to be a walking contradiction; claiming to harbor no ill will towards the gay community, but yet refusing a request for a wedding cake to mark the occasion because it is against his “beliefs.” Can you really have one without the other?

Phillips has faced a firestorm of media attention since the story broke about his refusal. It has even spawned the launch of a Facebook page for those choosing to boycott the bakery. And just this past weekend, the bakery was picketed by protesters for their stance on gays.

“What’s next? Will gays be denied the right to eat cake from this bakery,” one protester asked. “This kind of homophobia and bigotry must stop!”

“Today they are denying a same-sex couple service,” said another protester. “What’s next, denial because they are ethnic or a mixed race couple? There has to be some understanding, and we have to start somewhere.”

Phillips denied another couple the same request earlier this year, but seems to feel that his cakes are suitable for consumption by gays for other occasions.

“If gays come in and want to order birthday cakes or any cakes for any occasion, graduations, or whatever, I have no prejudice against that whatsoever. It’s just the wedding cake – not the people, not their lifestyle.”

Dave Mullins and Charlie Craig, the couple at the center of this controversy, were “stunned and humiliated” by their exchange with Phillips. The couple, who plan to wed this fall in Massachusetts this fall, asked the bakery for a cake to cap off a planned reception in Denver later this year.

“It was the most awkward, surreal, very brief encounter,” Mullins, 28, told Denver Westword. “We got up to leave, and to be totally honest, I said, ‘F**k you and your homophobic cake shop.’ And I may or may not have flipped him off.”

From a P.R. perspective, the true test of Masterpiece Cakeshop’s longevity is yet to come. The boycott Facebook page has more than 500 supporters and is growing daily. And there is another protest planned for this weekend, with several local organizations pledging their support. Shop owner Phillips may have to enact the option for closure sooner than he had anticipated.

What are your thoughts on this continuing story? Offer your comments below…

CPR’s Ryan Warner named in 5280 Magazines Top of the Town

CPR’s Ryan Warner

Congratulations to Ryan Warner, host of the popular Colorado Public Radio program “Colorado Matters.” Warner was named the editors choice in 5280 Magazine’s “Top of the Town” edition. Read more about this latest honor for this talented radio personality!

Denver Post lays-off Parker, Littwin…more could follow

In a shocking turn of events, The Denver Post yesterday laid off two of its most popular columnists. Penny Parker and Mike Littwin, were handed their walking papers yesterday. In a move viewed by many as “the beginning of the end” for the paper, shock, sadness, and questions as to why are all many can ponder today.

According to Denver’s Westword Magazine, Parker is quoted as being “quite surprised” by her former employers decision, and did not see this action coming.

“Kick me in the head, seriously,” says Parker. “I knew nothing, nothing. My poor, 33-year-old boss” — business editor Kristi Arellano — “had to tell me. I feel really bad for her. This is not what she signed on for.”

The social media stratosphere has been exploding with fans of both columnists expressing their sadness about The Post’s decision.

“A man with whom I have rarely agreed but always respected, Mike Littwin and the woman with her finger on the pulse of Denver will be missed,” says one of Parkers Facebook followers.

Another states “I am about ready to cancel the paper!”

In spite of the surprising move by The Post, Parker says she harbors no ill will towards the paper.

“I will forever love the Post, but I’m sad about my own situation. They had to do what they had to do.”

Parker also expressed concerns that this may not be the end, and that more changes could be eminent.

Whatever the future holds for this talented journalist, we at Emphasis M&C hope it will include staying here locally. Penny Parker always had a true grasp on the local scene; be it in business or gossip. While the shock of the decision by The Denver Post will be fresh in the minds of her readers and fans, the courage, style and grace shown by Parker during her tenure with defunct paper The Rocky Mountain News, and her transition to The Denver Post, will not soon be forgotten. She has faced more formidable foes during her battle with cancer, and she won; she will win again.  We wish her nothing but the best…now and always.


Jump! Magazine Shaking Up Local GLBT Publications

Jump! is shaking up the competition!

There is a new player in publications catering to the Denver LGBT community. Jump! magazine debuted in June, just in time to help kick-off the Denver PrideFest festivities taking place this weekend. This full color magazine shines a spotlight on travel, fitness, dining and nightlife in the community. The concept of executive editor Nick Mangiapane and publisher Kevin Hopper, a gay couple who moved to Denver from South Florida in April, will be distributed at gay and lesbian bars, nightclubs and some restaurants on a monthly basis.

“We wanted to expand our horizons by sharing this entertainment guide with other cities,” according to Nick Mangiapane. “We investigated the city and saw an opportunity to compliment the community with our glossy, classy gay magazine.”

With longtime publications such as Out Front Colorado and Gazette in circulation, the climate was ripe for a new publication such as Jump!. The aesthetic differences are just one of the characteristics that set this new magazine apart from the competition. The layout of the magazine is both hip, and easy to follow. The advertising to editorial ratio for this inaugural issue is roughly 45% ads to 25% content. For their initial run, the magazine opted for a run of 10,000 copies, with plans for expansion on that number in subsequent runs as advertising revenue increases.

The magazine will also feature photos of members of the community. The “Mad Paparazzi” section will feature full-color photos of visitors to local hot-spots such as Tracks Nightclub, Charlie’sDenverand XBar. Such features are popular with readers, and also further enhance the public image of the venue featured.

Jump! also offers an online option that includes additional content to what is in the magazine.

Mangiapane and Hopper bring their unique style to Denver after the success of Mark Magazine and the website; the blueprint for Jump! and the subsequent website. With any new venture there are bound to be growing pains. But the duo is optimistic about the magazines future, and pleased to bring their vision to the Denver LGBT community.

“We are excited to be part of such an amazing LGBT community,” says Nick.