Supporting DEI Businesses Enriches Meetings and Gives Back to the Local Community

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Supporting DEI Businesses Enriches Meetings and Gives Back to the Local Community

By Destination DC | Mar 1, 2023

Washington, DC is proud to support the MPI Black Meeting Professionals Community. Destination DC (DDC) looks forward to creating platforms and opportunities for an amazing exchange of ideas over shared values and purposeful initiatives with Black meeting professionals.

DDC recognizes the importance of attendee engagement and interfacing with the local community of your event’s destination. Washington, DC is rich in diverse neighborhoods and meetings present an opportunity to tap into the culture of the destination and support local businesses, fostering a strong connection for attendees.

Through our DEI Business Fellowship program, we strive to promote businesses that reflect diversity, equity and inclusion, and inform meeting planners of the resources available in Washington, DC, to enrich their events.  DDC’s annual cohort highlights local businesses owned by people of color, LGBTQ+, women and persons with disabilities. Support of these local businesses and the local economy benefits attendees in myriad ways and leaves a lasting social impact.

“As a member-based organization focused on economic development through tourism, it’s important for us to connect with the local community and rebuild the meetings landscape and hospitality industry in Washington, DC equitably and inclusively,” said Elliott L. Ferguson, II, president and CEO, DDC. “Incorporating DEI vendors and services into your events allows attendees to engage with small businesses in our own backyard and embodies the true spirit of the local community.”

Along with attractions and restaurants, the second annual class of 36 DEI Business Fellowship members includes convention services, event planners, caterers, photographers, local artisans and hands-on workshops. For the full list of DEI Fellows, visit

Food & Beverage

  • The District Pit – Catering company specializing in BBQ southern comfort food and delicious sweets
  • Wine Key Experience – Brings people together through cocktails, wine and food, and innovative solutions for events in socially responsible settings
  • Get Plated Catering – Boutique-style catering for events in the DMV
  • Sofull Catering LLC – Full-service catering company in the
  • The Boards LLC – Custom charcuterie boards and spices


  • Flowers by Alexes – Florist serving the area with fresh floral arrangements and additional gifts

Photography and AV Services

  • Chip Dizárd Photography – Dizárd is a photographer who teaches skills to thrive in business through educational videos, in-depth training, mentoring programs, consulting and public speaking. His team also offers event photography, videography and AV support.
  • The Documentist Photography – Professional photographer/videographer specializing in corporate headshots and events photography
  • Professional Image LLC – Full-service media experts offering photography, AV production and event management
  • NTD360 – Specializes in 360 Photo Booths for leisure and corporate events
  • Open Door Concept – Available film, photography and event space in Northeast Washington, DC

Professional and Event Services

  • The Collective – Event planner serving the DMV
  • Concept Creative Group – B2B customer activation and guest experiences.
  • White House Nannies – Offers nanny solutions to families, visitors and business travelers in the DC area
  • Perfect Planning Events – Event planning services from design to final production
  • Events by Chalk – Event consulting from planning to strategy


  • LA Executive Services – Provides transportation services for corporate travel and special events

One of the most inclusive and accessible cities in the world, Washington, DC prioritizes initiatives to eliminate barriers and to meet the needs of all visitors. DDC features and will expand on content for that highlights accessibility and provides resources.

DDC’s mission and commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion also includes the American Experience Foundation, its 501c-3 nonprofit focused on providing scholarships and career experience to local students. In 2022, AEF surpassed $100,000 awarded as part of 42 scholarships over the past eight years. The scholarships support students on their journeys in hospitality and tourism through higher education. In 2023, AEF’s next $100,000 campaign will raise funds for the program and assist the next generation of students entering the hospitality industry.

Get more information on MPI's Black Meeting Professionals Community and join other dedicated Black meeting professionals seeking connection, opportunities, and professional growth.



Destination DC
Destination DC

A captivating morning paddle on the Potomac River. An afternoon spent exploring the exhibits and artifacts at the National Museum of African American History and Culture. An evening enjoying one of DC’s iconic sports teams. A monumental meal of Low-Country Southern cuisine at Georgia Browns. No matter how you spend your time in the nation’s capital, you’re sure to leave with lifelong memories.