Small in stature but with a stare that could launch a thousand ships (and probably has, as he served as president of the legendary gay and lesbian cruise company RSVP Vacations for more than 21 years), Rounds is a force to be reckoned with. “Charlie has passion and is a smart, true business person. I admire his big ideas and creativity,” says Steve Roth, founder and president of Out Think Partners, an LGBT communications and marketing agency. Roth, a longtime friend and colleague from their RSVP days, recruited Rounds about a year and a half ago to join the agency and bring his decades of expertise to a rapidly evolving landscape.
“We saw changes happening so fast in the US,” says Roth, referring to the gay marriage momentum, which at press time is legal in 35 states. “We are far from done but headed in the right direction. Yet we were seeing the rest of the world go from bad to worse. International LGBT rights is the next frontier, so we started talking and asking ourselves how we could make a difference.”