Amid Pandemic, Black+Queer Owned South LA Pet Care Business Launches New Worker-Cooperative – Press Release
To Be Loved celebrates the occasion with “The Coop Launch Pawty” – Virtual event featuring Pet Care Workshop, Dance Pawty with LA-based DJ Breezy EZ and more
September 12, 2020 – South Central Los Angeles – During the Summer of COVID, pet care business To Be Loved is celebrating two unlikely milestones: four years of operation out of South Central LA and successfully completing a just transition from sole proprietorship to worker-owned cooperative. To celebrate, co-worker/owners Brandi “Bee” Coleman (they/them) and Shelena “Lena” Williams (all pronouns) are inviting dog lovers from all over to “The Coop Launch Pawty!” on Wednesday, September 16th from 6pm-8pm. Hosted on Zoom, this event will include: a pet care workshop by TBL’s pet care pros; a dance “pawty” by DJ Breezy EZ; gourmet food+drink packages by Angelino on the Rocks by Philly Jawns & Co (*LA only), giveaways and more surprises TBA.
To Be Loved, now a California Cooperative Corporation, was founded as To Bee Loved the sole prop by Bee in 2016 in View Park, a historically black neighborhood in South Central LA experiencing rapid gentrification thanks to the construction of multiple stadiums and the expansion of the Metro Purple Line to LAX. The area reminded Bee of Washington, DC: a city they left in 2010 that experienced the same crisis of gentrification fueled by commercial and residential real estate development that Bee discovered was shaping out throughout the “South LA” area.
To Bee Loved was born from a marriage of Bee’s lifelong aspiration to start a business working with dogs and their desire to participate in activism that materially uplifted Black life; a desire activated during the Black Lives Matter uprisings of 2014 in the wake of the police murders of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Freddie Gray in Baltimore and Eric Garner in New York. “I wanted to find a way to bridge the way I’ve always loved dogs and the way I love my Black family,” said Bee when asked about founding TBL in South Central LA. “I believe there’s a lot we can learn from our relationship with our pets about how we can love and care for each other, ourselves and communities.” It’s very timely, then, that this Black-, Queer-owned business is marking their dual accomplishments amid the current climate of social unrest and racial reckoning gripping the nation. Bee and Lena, longtime friends from Maryland, would team up six months after Lena moved to LA with her own dog enterprising aspirations and activist spirit. For years of support on their journey, Bee and Lena are happy to host “The Coop Launch Pawty!” in celebration of their conversion and a “thank you” to their community.
Admission to the virtual event is $25 and available for purchase on Eventbrite, so dog owners from across the country are invited to join in for a lineup stacked with treats for people and pups alike.
Workshop by co-worker/owners Bee and Lena
Special giveaways and announcements
Details on what converting into a worker-owned cooperative means
What direction the business will take as decided by community survey
Dog-friendly Freebies from HoneyBunch and Tribal Pawz
Dance “Pawty” w/music by DJ Breezy Ez
Limited number of food+drink packages will be available (at an additional cost) featuring:
To learn more about the event or inquire about sponsorship, please contact Lena Williams at (323) 989-2581 or by email at [email protected]
Company Name: To Be Loved
Contact Person: Lena Williams
Email: Send Email
Phone: (323) 989-2581
Address:1131 W 47th St
City: Los Angeles
Country: United States