Ashley T Brundage is the Founder and President of Empowering Differences, and also the title of Ashley’s book released in 2020. Ashley’s personal story of inclusion through a leadership dialogue is often requested. Beginning when she decided to self identify during job interview’s as a male to female transgender woman, she fought through homelessness, discrimination, and harassment to rise above and find employment as a teller for a major US based corporation. Then through various financial roles over the next 5 years until being appointed into her position as Vice President with the National Diversity and Inclusion team. Ashley credits her success to those closest to her for providing actionable allyship including her 2 teenage sons, Bryce and Blake.
Since beginning transitioning in 2008, she has worked tirelessly to promote awareness and acceptance of gender identity and expression within the entire community. She works to accomplish this goal by volunteering & serving in the community. She is the Past President of the Tampa Bay LGBT Chamber of Commerce, and held advisory positions with the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority, Equality Florida, and the NGLCC-National LGBT Chamber of Commerce. She chaired the successful bid to host the NGLCC convention in 2019, and Visit Tampa Bay named her their Tourism Champion for 2017. In July of 2019, she was named on to the national board of directors for GLAAD, the organization protecting LGBTQ voices across all media platforms.
Ms. Brundage speaks locally and nationally about her transition, workplace equality, empowerment, and leadership principles. Ashley has presented at more than 50 Fortune 500 Companies and several universities across the nation. She has been a keynote speaker for MacDill Air Force Base and the US Department of Health. She has also been interviewed in several publications and media outlets, including Tampa Bay Times, Watermark Magazine, Creative Loafing, The Tampa Bay Business Journal, The Miami Herald, Fox 13 News Tampa, ABC News 7 Ft Myers, CBS 10 Tampa, Las Vegas Review Journal, and the Daily Beast. Bloomberg Businessweek did a feature story on Ashley in March on 2019. The new book and course Empowering Differences has now been featured along with Ashley in Fairygodboss and Forbes.
Ashley has been recognized in many areas and has received numerous awards from the major corporation she represents. She was named 1 of 14 Most Remarkable People of 2014, by Watermark Magazine. The University of South Florida 2014 Community Pride Award, 2015 St Pete Pride Grand Marshal, 2015 Commendation-City of Tampa, 2016 Tampa Bay Business Journal Business Woman of the Year, 2016 Voice for Equality Award from Equality Florida, and Leadership Award from the Florida Diversity Council in 2016. In 2017, she was awarded the Robert Pope Leadership Award from Metro Wellness and Community Center, and was a winner of the inaugural People First Award by the Tampa Bay Business Journal. The Tampa Bay Business Journal also named Ashley in their annual Power 100 list, the most influential and powerful people in business for 2017. In 2018, Ashley was honored recently by the National Diversity Council as one of Florida’s Most Influential and Powerful Women, also was named a Champion Award Honoree by international non profit Out and Equal. In 2019, she was named the outstanding LGBT voice by the Tampa Bay Business Journal, and Transgender Rising Star from the New York Coming Out Conference.