Main Street Merchants Celebrated at Governor’s Mansion

Lee and Terry Owsley of Latitudes Fair Trade Store on Main Street, Old Town Warrenton, will join a select group of business leaders from across the Commonwealth and Governor Terence R. McAuliffe on Friday, April 29, to announce a month-long celebration of Virginia’s business community.

As businesses play a key role in strengthening Virginia by job creation, innovative technologies, and employing a diverse workforce, it is important to recognize Virginia businesses for the essential role they play in keeping Virginia’s economy strong.

The Owsley’s, through their company, Latitudes Fair Trade L.L.C. own two fair trade stores, one in Warrenton and one in Old Town Fredericksburg. Their company was recommended by the local Main Street organization in Fredericksburg and the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development as their business is an integral contributor to the local economy and community.

Not only do they have a positive impact on the local economies of Warrenton and Fredericksburg, as a fair trade business, specializing in hand-made, artisanal goods from around the world, the Owsleys foster positive economic relationships between American consumers and marginalized artisans from developing nations. The connections made by Latitudes Fair Trade Stores go beyond an economic impact. They also interweave our stories with the stories of industrious artisans abroad. The Owsleys believe in social justice and bringing fair trade fashion and sweat-shop free merchandise to our local communities. As is so eloquently stated on their web site, “money is one of the most powerful forms of influence, especially when it comes to impacting the global economy, basic human rights and the environment. By using it thoughtfully we can have great positive impact on the lives of others around the world.”

I am proud to know these people and play a small part in the good they do as their business counsel. This is truly one of the ultimate examples of why I do what I do.