Business of Pride Award

Alumni Keyne Quiroga-Anania (left) and Gary Mudd were among the recipients of the St. Louis Business Journal’s inaugural Business of Pride Awards. (Submitted photos)

A pair of University of Missouri–St. Louis alumni were among eight recipients of the St. Louis Business Journal’s inaugural Business of Pride Award featured in the publication’s June 18 edition. 

Keyne Quiroga-Anania, who earned a bachelor’s degree in education from UMSL in 2011, and Gary Mudd, who earned an MBA from UMSL in 2013, were honored as Outstanding LGBTQIA+ leaders who are successful in their careers, active in their communities and are advocates for inclusion and equality.

Quiroga-Anania was recognized for her role as human resources director at Booksource, where the Business Journal reported that she “leads by example and fosters a diverse workplace through hiring practices, annual respectful workplace training for all employees and her general demeanor.” 

Quiroga-Anania, who received an MBA from Webster University, told the UMSL Daily that being in an environment where she can openly identify as gay encourages broader efforts of inclusion.

“Being open in your community and business is important so that people can see those of us in the LGBTQIA+ community are not much different than them,” Quiroga-Anania said. “Being open in my line of work – human resources – is important because I set the expectations of how we treat all our employees no matter how they identify.”

Mudd is the chief financial officer at DOORWAYS, a nonprofit organization that provides housing and services to people with HIV/AIDS, and formerly the co-president of PROMO, which advocates for LGBTQIA+ rights in Missouri. He is also a member of UMSL’s Finance & Legal Studies Advisory Board.

Mudd told the UMSL Daily that being part of the UMSL community – both as a student and board member – contributed to his advocacy.

“My primary professional goal in obtaining my MBA was to become a c-suite leader, which I have been for more than five years,” said Mudd, who received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri–Columbia. “I took a mid-career sabbatical to earn my MBA from UMSL, during which time I was recruited to become a board member for both PROMO and St. Louis Effort for AIDS. So definitely, UMSL had a big impact on my LGBTQIA+ and HIV advocacy.”  

Quiroga-Anania said that awards like the Business of Pride are an indication of positive changes happening in the business community.

While slow to happen, there are advocates out there for the community and it shows those in the business community that not only can they make positive strides towards inclusion but they should,” she said. “I do hope to see more of this, not only in the LGBTQIA+ community but also for the business community of color.”    

Mudd said that he hopes to see awards like Business of Pride extend into all areas of society.

“I encourage everyone to help our state and nation get to the day when all members of the LGBTQ+ community can truly be ourselves at work, without fear of reprehension or being fired,” he said. “I firmly believe diversity leads to healthier, stronger, and more creative work environments.”

The St. Louis Business Journal honored Quiroga-Anania, Mudd and the other Business of Pride Award recipients in a virtual event on Thursday afternoon

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Ramona Curtis

Ramona Curtis

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