Declaring that he is hosting an “inclusive festival,” and that “I would not deny Donald Trump a place if he wanted one,” Stonewall Pride’s Executive Director, Jeff Sterling, is permitting the man who two years ago ran the Florida Agenda into a $12.7 million dollar bankruptcy to co-sponsor the VIP tent at this weekend’s festival.
Bobby Blair is the CEO of LGBTQ Loyalty Holdings, Inc., which announced last week they “are proud to help donate and underwrite” the costs of the Stonewall Pride VIP tent event. But after an uproar over the announcement SFGN learned Blair decided to not attend the event.
LGBTQ Loyalty Holdings, on the OTC as LFAP, is a publicly-traded company offering itself as an entity that “intends to deliver financial and marketing platforms specific to the LGBTQ community.”
Jeff Sterling is also the CFO of LGBTQ Holdings, a company recently featured favorably on CNN.
Sterling also operates the Wilton Manors Entertainment Group, which hosts the city’s Art Walk and Taste of the Island.
Blair was the former CEO of Multimedia Platforms, the company that previously owned the Florida Agenda.
In 2017, Blair filed a Chapter 11 plan for federal bankruptcy reorganization. The petition was eventually dismissed, and the creditors and investors never repaid.
Blair’s own court filings in 2018 listed a total indebtedness to creditors north of 10 million dollars on his last venture. He told SFGN at the time “there is nothing more I would like than to make our investors whole again.”
Repercussions from Blair’s announcement were felt immediately.
Sterling first replied that “Bobby Blair is just one person, and the loyalty holdings group includes not just him but a distinguished board of directors.”
Sterling named former congressman Barney Frank, and the world-renowned tennis star, Martina Navratilova as backers of their joint venture.
Nevertheless, Sterling announced on Tuesday that Blair recognized he was “a lightning rod,” and decided his presence would cause more problems than it was worth.
He stated Blair was going back to California and other corporate representatives would host the VIP tent instead.
“We just decided it would be more prudent. We wanted to err on the side of inclusion, not exclusion,” Sterling stated. “Is it a difficult policy to navigate? Sure. Absolutely. But it would be equally bad if I denied certain people entry.”
In a press release last week, Blair announced that his new company “has a goal of building a pathway for the LGBTQ community to support the companies that are strong supporters for equality.” The release did not mention the prior bankruptcy or the millions still owed to creditors, both locally and nationally.
SFGN file photo.