New LGBTQ Ad­vi­sory Board An­nounced

GA Voice - - Front Page -

Ber­lin Sylvestre bsylvestre@the­ How se­ri­ous about LGBTQ is­sues is newly minted At­lanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bot­toms? Se­ri­ous enough to have her of­fice give us a call on a Fri­day af­ter­noon to let us know that she’s about to in­tro­duce her in­cred­i­bly di­verse LGBTQ Ad­vi­sory Board. Ac­cord­ing to the mayor, these are the folks who “will help shape the city’s poli­cies and en­gage­ments with At­lanta’s LGBTQ com­mu­ni­ties, and serve as a bridge be­tween City Hall and LGBTQ res­i­dents.” Let’s meet her ap­point­ments — they might even be folks you know!

Bishop Oliver Clyde Allen,

Vi­sion Church At­lanta Com­mu­nity Or­ga­nizer At­lanta Coali­tion for LGBTQ Youth (ACFLY)

Kia Barnes, Emily Halden Brown, State Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Park Can­non,

GA House District 58 Former Owner, Jun­gle

Richard Cher­skov,


Gabrielle Clai­borne,

Co-Founder, Trans­for­ma­tion Jour­neys World­wide Founder, Out Front Theatre Pre­ven­tion Spe­cial­ist, Pos­i­tive Im­pact Health Cen­ters CEO, At­lanta Film

Paul Con­roy, Tori Cooper, Lisa Cun­ning­ham,

Part­ners Founder, Jamie Ferg­er­son, At­lanta Pride

Jeff Gra­ham,

Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Ge­or­gia Equal­ity LGBT Cau­cus Chair, Demo­cratic Party of Ge­or­gia MSW, Co-Founder, An­nual Rustin/Lorde Break­fast Founder, South­ern Jewish Re­source Net­work (SOJOURN) Board of Direc­tors,

Colton Grif­fin, Roshelle Dar­lene Hud­son, Rabbi Joshua Lesser, Ivette Lopez,

Latino LinQ

Tracee McDaniel,

Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Jux­ta­posed Cen­ter for Trans­for­ma­tion Com­mu­nity Ac­tivist Saint Mark

Josh McNair, Rev. Dr. Joshua M. Noblitt,

United Methodist Church Board Chair­man, AID At­lanta Former Owner, OutWrite Book Store & Cof­fee­house Prin­ci­pal, Avi­son Young Found­ing Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, LGBT In­sti­tute Senior Di­rec­tor of Devel­op­ment, Woodruff Health Sciences Cen­ter

Matt Parkey, Philip Raf­shoon, Kirk Rich, Ryan Roe­mer­man, Jonathan Rus­sell, Brigid Scar­brough,

Na­tional Board of Gover­nors, Hu­man Rights Cam­paign Owner, Soul Bar At

Melissa Scott,

Pals Lounge

Fred Smith,

Uni­ver­sity Law Pro­fes­sor, Emory

Pam Ste­wart, Feroza Syed,

Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Board of Direc­tors, GLAAD Trans­gen­der Ac­tivist Alex Wan, Former At­lanta City Coun­cil Mem­ber, District 6

Craig Wash­ing­ton,

Pre­ven­tion Pro­grams Man­ager, AID At­lanta Ac­tor, Star (FOX) At­lanta Pres­i­dent, Mus­lims for Pro­gres­sive Val­ues

Miss Lawrence, Kelly Went­worth,

In an exclusive with Ge­or­gia Voice, Mayor Bot­toms’ team ex­pressed that these are peo­ple she’s known per­son­ally and pro­fes­sion­ally over the years. Ad­di­tion­ally, a good por­tion of the LGBTQ Board came in the form of rec­om­men­da­tions from senior staffers like Robin Sha­har, who’s been a may­oral LGBTQ ad­vi­sor since 2013, hav­ing worked un­der former Mayor Kasim Reed; Rashad Tay­lor, a cur­rent political con­sul­tant and former mem­ber of the Ge­or­gia House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives; Ma­lik Brown, whose bril­liant and ex­haus­tive list of ac­com­plish­ments the mayor’s let­ter ex­pounded upon May 7; and Reese McCranie, a former ad­vi­sor on LGBTQ is­sues un­der former Mayor Kasim Reed.

And what are their cur­rent pri­or­i­ties?

Ac­cord­ing to the mayor’s of­fice: Re­duc­ing the LGBTQ home­less youth pop­u­la­tion in At­lanta Work­ing to com­bat the ris­ing rate of new HIV in­fec­tions in At­lanta De­vel­op­ing pro­gram­ming to sup­port jo­breadi­ness among LGBTQ youth Work­ing to at­tract and host more LGBTQ con­fer­ences and events in At­lanta Ge­or­gia Voice also spoke to Press Sec­re­tary Michael Smith, who had this to say: “Mayor Bot­toms is a fifth-gen­er­a­tion At­lantan, so she un­der­stands the im­por­tant role our com­mu­nity has played in push­ing the city for­ward. The for­ma­tion of the LGBTQ Ad­vi­sory Board is fur­ther tes­ta­ment that we have an un­wa­ver­ing ad­vo­cate and ally in the Mayor’s Of­fice. Ad­dress­ing the com­mu­nity at large, Mayor Bot­toms states: “Dur­ing my cam­paign, I spoke at length of my com­mit­ment to the LGBTQ com­mu­nity. As Mayor, my recog­ni­tion of that im­por­tance has been put into ac­tion, as I have made the for­ma­tion of the LGBTQ Ad­vi­sory Board and the hir­ing of a full-time LGBTQ Af­fairs Co­or­di­na­tor a pri­or­ity. I am proud to wel­come our first full­time em­ployee ded­i­cated solely to li­ais­ing with our LGBTQ con­stituents, and I am equally proud to wel­come such a distin­guished group of com­mu­nity ad­vo­cates and lead­ers to the City’s LGBTQ Ad­vi­sory Board.” So let this be some amaz­ing news as we head into sum­mer: We have a pro­gres­sive leader in a high po­si­tion who cares about the needs of our com­mu­nity — not too many big cities can claim that. We at Ge­or­gia Voice wel­come the new ad­vi­sory board and thank Mayor Bot­toms for her com­mit­ment to the LGBTQ com­mu­nity.

May 11, 2018

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