Lyft News

Pride Month Feature: Brian Irving

Jun 27, 2024

Brian Irving (he/him) is Lyft’s Chief Marketing Officer, and a member of the LyftOut ERG, which represents and supports the LGBTQIA+ community we serve. Brian discussed how the theme of connection unites his work and his personal journey — and his plans for Pride. 

What drew you to marketing?

When I watched TV as a kid, I would pay more attention to the commercials than the actual shows. So even before I knew what marketing was, it was something I had an instinct for. I love it, because to do it well requires an insatiable curiosity about how people connect — with one another and with brands. The opportunity to feed that curiosity at Lyft, and do it in a way that helps the business, is a dream come true.

You mention connection. How has that played a role in your own personal journey?

We are built for human connection. It’s how we grow, thrive, and sometimes just survive. When we are isolated, we can feel like we aren't fully human. 

I grew up in Flint, Michigan in the 1980s — not a very welcoming place for a gay kid. It wasn’t until I moved to New York in the early 2000s, and experienced the gay community there, that I started to find my own pride in myself. There was a popular slogan, “We’re here, we’re queer, and we won’t be silenced.” Hearing that line gave me strength. Even today, it reminds me that no matter where I am, I’m not alone, and it’s OK for me to be who I am — and to use my voice to let others know that, too.

Are there any figures that have inspired you? 

I would have to say Harvey Milk. It’s impossible to think about where we would be today without him. His voice was so bold, loud, and strong. He demonstrated a level of bravery that I wish I had as a kid — and still strive for as an adult. 

Any plans for Pride Month? 

I try to live with pride 365 days a year. That might sound like a cliche, but it’s true. For example, I read books to my 5 year old son about having two dads, and we connect with other families that have same-sex parents. I’m planning some special dinners and gatherings with friends. Unfortunately I’ll be out of town for San Francisco’s big parade — but I’ll follow along vicariously on social media and our own Lyft channel.