How to rename the GLCCB to be more inclusive and to garner more community participation were topics at the combined September 12th board of directors’ meeting, annual meeting, and town hall of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB).
Jabari Lyles, board president, announced the appointment of two new boardmembers – Chris Weis and Merrick Moses. There remain applicants who have not yet been interviewed. One prospective member answered questions from attendees. The goal of the board is to have a total of ten to 12 members by the November meeting.
The board announced positive income from the recent King and Queen of Pride event, the launch of the new GLCCB website, as well as the securing of the services of a communications consultant to assist with the website maintenance and other online activities. They are working to secure the new development consultant, who will primarily focus on grant writing.
The annual meeting and town hall began with a moment of silence for Edith Windsor, the LGBT rights champion who helped gain marriage equality, who had passed earlier that day.
The co-executive directors gave a report on the year in review, followed by a review of the center’s 2012-2017 strategic plan: which goals had been met so far, which were still in progress, and which are lagging.
Some of the major areas where it was felt no progress had been made include creating avenues for more direct participatory input by community members, and choosing a new day-to-day name for the center that does not exclude segments of the community as some feel the name GLCCB does.
On the matter of membership, which has been repeatedly brought up at town hall meetings over the past few years, Lyles stated that the board had decided not to pursue reinstatement of voting membership in the center to avoid any financial barriers, though there’s never been a financial requirement for membership in the center in its history, but rather membership was based around active participation in meetings, with financial contributions being optional. Instead of voting membership, the board proposes to create an advisory committee with members to be chosen by the community.
As for the organizations name, Lyles stated that he preferred to step back and look at rebranding the organization before proposing a potential new name to the community. The community should expect an update on this issue at the next regularly scheduled town hall meeting.
Lyles urged the community to attend all open meetings, and stated that the board should expect to be held accountable for its actions or inaction at future board of directors and town hall meetings.