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Thursday, February 04, 2021 05:24 PM

Dear Consortium Membership,

The Consortium Executive Board is saddened to learn of the passing of a long-time Consortium member and friend, Dr. Andrew Dowe.  Andrew served as the Associate Director of the Office of LGBTQ Resources and Lecturer and Director of Undergraduate Studies in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University. 

Many of you may know Andrew from Creating Change where, like many of us, he brought Yale students and attended many Consortium functions.  Andrew was deeply committed to the support, empowerment, and advancement of QTPOC communities, specifically Black folks, in research, teaching, programs, and his personal and professional practice.  This can be seen throughout his entire life’s work, including but not limited to, his recently completed dissertation, “Cruising Homophobias: Race, Gender, Sexuality and the Triangulations of Empire;” programs and events he organized through Yale University’s Office of LGBTQ Resources; and through all the students, faculty, staff, and alumni that Andrew served during his time at Yale.  You can learn more about Andrew and his impact on the Yale community in this recent article from Yale Daily News.

For members who did not have the opportunity to know Andrew, we wanted to highlight some testimonials from fellow members that speak to how special Andrew was and how dearly he will be missed:

Maria Trumpler, Director of LGBTQ Resources and Senior Lecturer in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University

“Andrew was cherished in so many ways—as a friend, a cousin, a first year roommate, a fellow grad student, a boss, a mentor and teacher—that the story of his work mentoring and supporting LGBTQ students, staff and faculty and working with me to create both the physical and community spaces of Yale's Office of LGBTQ Resources has not been told—and this group seems like the perfect audience for that.

Andrew came to Yale from a Catholic boy’s school in Florida.  He came out right away and took on leadership roles in PRISM (for queer POC) and the Coop (the umbrella LGBTQ group). He majored in African-American Studies and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.  I met him in 2007 when I was teaching the WGSS junior seminar and he impressed me with his curiosity, willingness to question accepted practices, and his joy in living.

When he returned to Yale for graduate school in 2010, he worked with me in the newly founded Office of LGBTQ Resources which provided education, outreach and advocacy for students, faculty and staff (but had no space of its own).  Undaunted, he developed programming including Queer Yoga and brunches where he fried eggs to order on a two burner stove.  He created film series with directors in person afterwards. He developed a workshop “Creating Inclusive Events” and brought campus leaders together for the Queer Leadership Roundtable each semester.

In spring of 2017, he was the associate director of the Office (accompanying an appointment as lecturer and Director of Undergraduate Studies in WGSS) and we were offered a beautiful new space—though it was dusty and unloved when we first saw it.  Andrew engaged deeply with all aspects of the design and finish process, able to imagine what would look both Yale and queer, and how our students might use the space.  I and many others treasure both the care and simple beauty of the interior design and the care and simple beauty of the community he nurtured. 

Some aspects of the way he stewarded the LGBTQ Community that were extraordinary: he knew everyone (and had patience for them all, too!), even though he faced many personal challenges at Yale, he loved the institution and wanted to work to make it better, his academic position and his student affairs position enhanced each other, his sense of color and visual style and graphic design.”

 

Angel Collie, Assistant Director at the Duke University Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity

“It’s hard to imagine Yale or the world without Andrew. He was one of the first people I met when I set out to connect with the Office of LGBTQ Resources. His humor, his kindness, his deep passion for love and justice drew me and so many others to him. Seeing him every year at Creating Change or anytime I made it up to New Haven was always a highlight. He was a beacon for queer and trans students, especially queer and trans students of color. My heart is with the Yale LGBTQ community, all who worked with him, and all who love him.”

 

Dr. Zaneta Rago-Craft, Advisor to the President for Diversity and Inclusion and Director of the Intercultural Center at Monmouth University

“Dr. Andrew Dowe always made those around him feel loved, listened to, and uplifted. He was an exemplary advocate, scholar, and student affairs practitioner who always made sure to center the voices and needs of those who too often navigate institutions at the margins. He was a colleague and friend.  His legacy and contributions to Yale, and in the field more broadly, will be felt for generations to come.”

 

Travis Becker, Director of the UC Santa Cruz Lionel Cantú Queer Resource Center

“The world is a better place because Andrew was here. Whenever we're all able to return to in-person conferences, I hope to find myself at Creating Change with friends and chosen family that I've come to look forward to spending precious time with; there may only be one or two nights a year where we can all actually get together like this... We'll be gathered around a bunch of tables near the bar at the hotel lobby, or dancing out at a local queer spot, and I know undoubtedly there will be a moment during that time that this loss will feel that much more profound for me, and for all of us who knew Andrew in these spaces. Andrew is sprinkled all over delightful memories like these for me over the past decade, and my life is better because of the conversations I had and memories I made with him annually. I will sincerely miss his radiant smile, warm hugs, joyous, amazing laughter, and most especially seeing those limbs waving about all over the place, dancing the night away, during our annual connections at CC. To a beautiful heart and a brilliant mind: may you rest in power, Andrew.”

 

Chris Woods, Director of the NYU LGBTQ+ Center and Outgoing Internal Coordinator

“Andrew’s bright smile, warm spirit, and joyous demeanor was infectious and drew in everyone around him.  In addition to the joy he brought to me personally, Andrew was also a deeply critical scholar and professional with a fierce commitment to centering queer and trans folks of color in all of what he was and did.  I wish we were together at Creating Change to have a drink and dance in your honor.  I will miss you, my friend, and it was an honor to know and learn from you.”

 

We send our deepest condolences to Andrew’s family and friends, as well as the students, faculty, staff, and alumni at Yale University who had the blessing to work with and know Andrew everyday.  Additionally, if you have the resources to give, there is a fundraiser by Yale community members to endow the LGBTQ Resource Center at Yale in Andrew’s name.

In Solidarity,

The Consortium Board

 
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Tuesday, October 13, 2020 01:04 PM

Dear Consortium Members,

The Consortium Executive Board would like to provide an update on the process of restructuring our Regions groups as we shift the final pieces into place. Part of the restructure included some merging and rearranging of the states and provinces making up different Regions in order to more equitably distribute membership population for Regional Representatives, as well as renaming the Region groups. In particular, we would like to direct your attention to the new structure and how the Regional Representatives have changed to match this structure and inform you of the new Facebook groups and Consortium e-lists.

The new structure is as follows:


Red Region

Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont

Jxhn/J.T. Martin (they/them/theirs)

Jo Wang (they/them/theirs)

Red Region Facebook Group

Red Region E-List: [email protected] 

 

Orange Region

Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington DC

Eric Anglero (he/him/his)

Tiffany Thompson (she/her/hers)

Orange Region Facebook Group

Orange Region E-List: [email protected] 

 

Yellow Region

Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Ontario, South Dakota, Wisconsin

Jeff Gibson (he/him/his)

TBD - Vacancy

TBD - Vacancy

Yellow Region Facebook Group

Yellow Region E-List: [email protected] 


Green Region

Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia

Lo Denmon (they/them/theirs)

Rob Keel (he/him/his)

Tegra Myanna (they/them/theirs)

Green Region Facebook Group

Green Region E-List: [email protected] 


Blue Region

Arkansas, Arizona, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas

Andrew Herridge (he/him/his)

TBD - Vacancy

Blue Region Facebook Group

Blue Region E-List: [email protected] 


Purple Region

California, Hawaii, Nevada

Sarina Loeb (she/her/hers or they/them/theirs)

Megan M. Rush (she/her/hers or they/them/theirs)

Purple Region Facebook Group

Purple Region E-List: [email protected] 



Pink Region

Alaska, Alberta, British Columbia, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming

Debra East (she/her/hers)

Cindy Konrad (she/her/hers or they/them/theirs)

Pink Region Facebook Group

Pink Region E-List: [email protected] 


Regional Facebook pages are open to current Consortium members who live in the region in which the group indicates. To send something out over a regional listserv, just send your email to the indicated e-list using the email address associated with your Consortium membership.

For more information, including ways to contact your Regional Representatives, please visit the Regions page of our website.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to the Membership Engagement Collective.

In solidarity,

The Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals Executive Board

 
 
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Tuesday, June 02, 2020 10:49 AM

Dear Membership,

June 1st marks the beginning of Pride Month—a month of joy and celebration, taking pride in our queer and trans identities. However, this June 1st arrives during yet another collective moment of anger and uprising as Black lives are taken by white supremacy in the form of police/policing systems and other state-sanctioned violence. This June 1st brings a new month to the families and loved ones of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others who go unnamed and whose lives should not be forgotten; a new month without their children, parents, siblings, friends. We intentionally want to affirm the identity and uplift the story of Tony McDade, a transgender man murdered by police in Florida last week who has been misgendered and dead-named in many reports.

The entire Executive Board of the Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals writes today in solidarity with our Black members, friends, and colleagues as the organizing, protesting, and uprising continues. We write today to offer support to our members who are suffering, who are carrying deep pain and deep fear, who are caring and serving with strength in their communities while holding their own grief and anger, who are moving forward as our institutions expect “business as usual.” 

In light of ongoing uprisings in response to police violence against and murders of Black people in this country and globally, we want to remind our membership that it was the Stonewall uprisings in resistance to police violence against LGBTQ+ communities, primarily against queer and trans people of color, that laid the foundation for us to celebrate what we now call Pride today. This legacy of resistance should call us all to honor, remember, and act in solidarity with Black folks in our lives, institutions, and broader communities. For those needing education to turn to—with a particular call to reading for white and non-Black POC members—here are some resources that we hope will also lessen the burden of education from our Black peers and students:

In the spirit of moving beyond words and towards action, the Executive Board would like to present the following opportunities to engage and connect:

  • Our organization will be hosting spaces for our Black members through our QTIBPOC Constituency Calls; more information will be sent to membership as those dates are planned. For Black members seeking immediate virtual community, please visit our Consortium QPOC Constituency Group on Facebook

  • All upcoming constituency calls this week will center dialogue around racial justice and anti-Blackness.

  • We are bringing back the Decentering Whiteness series, last offered in summer 2018. The series was successful in bringing colleagues together around how we can decenter whiteness in our practice and lives. While our intent was to continue the series on an ongoing basis, we would like to be accountable for not decentering whiteness in our own practice by not continuing. Our intention is to build a collaborative learning space and are seeking facilitators and participants—to learn more, click here

If there are additional ways we can offer support and engagement from our organization, please let us know at [email protected].

In solidarity,

The Consortium Executive Board

 
 
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Thursday, April 16, 2020 09:24 AM

Dear Membership,


It is hard to believe it has been almost one month since we last reached out to you in the immediate response to the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping across our institutions; if you are anything like us, the last month feels to have simultaneously lasted several months and disappeared in a blink. We hope this message finds you well, in all senses of the word.


We would like to take a moment to share some important updates with you. As many institutions have frozen spending and/or are drastically shifting fiscal priorities in this moment, we know you may have concerns about renewing your Consortium membership, particularly if your renewal date is near. To that end,if your membership expired or will expire between March 1, 2020, and July 31, 2020, we will extend your membership benefits through August 1, 2020, with no penalty or lapse in membership. These dates will be continuously reassessed as we observe developments with COVID-19 and its impact across the higher education landscape. 

If, during this grace period, you are able to pay your or your institution’s membership dues, please do so as those funds allow the Consortium to continue to support our members through our programs and creates opportunities to subsidize memberships for those in need. There are more than 90 institutional and affiliate memberships that will benefit from the extended grace period; these memberships translate to at least $8,000 in revenue for the organization. If even a small portion of members due for renewal in this time period are able to renew as planned, it will make a significant positive impact on our organizational financial well-being. 

The Consortium board will engage in contingency planning through the end of our fiscal cycle (December 31, 2020), anticipating potential budget implications of COVID-19 on our members, as well as the organization, going into Fall 2020.  Potential contingency actions include, but are not limited to: 

  • Extension of lapsed membership grace period or offering reduced rate renewal of membership for those whose budgets are cut or frozen.

  • Dip into Consortium savings to fund continued membership engagement (e.g., Creating Change, webinars).

  • Bolster our current fundraising platforms to offer a venue for those positioned with resources to support the Consortium to do so during this time.  

As we assess our financial standing as an organization, we are temporarily suspending the awarding of co-sponsorship funds. We will continue to reassess this decision as we move forward and the long-term impact of this pandemic is realized. If you have questions or concerns about co-sponsorship, please reach out to the Membership Engagement Collective at [email protected]

If you have any questions about your membership, please email [email protected]

To close, we offer our sincere hopes for peace and well-being for each of you in this time of stress and challenge. We have enjoyed engaging with many of you on our recent constituency calls, and we hope you will continue to consider us as a source of community and support. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us and to one another. 

Sincerely,

The Consortium Executive Board

 
 
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Wednesday, March 18, 2020 01:46 PM

Members, Colleagues, Friends,

We write to you today to offer our support to our collective community in this challenging and unprecedented moment addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. We are, like most of you, experiencing the variable and chaotic environments of our campuses and communities as we work to collectively flatten the curve related to the spread of the virus. 

We have a few messages we would like to share at this time, and please know, we will continue to be in communication as necessary.

First, we want to address the mental and emotional toll this moment in time is taking on us as professionals and simply as humans. Being on the front lines in supporting our students, navigating institutional responses, and adapting to changing work environments—while balancing the needs and well-being of our families, communities, and those around us—is a lot of weight from all directions and can be overwhelming. Events to which we have given labor and resources are being canceled, communities we have intentionally facilitated are being separated by distance, and the needed policy and practice discussions and decisions for which we have long advocated are being necessarily pushed aside in addressing present concerns. All of these experiences and more can induce all types of feelings:sadness, disappointment, frustration, and more. We hope we can collectively hold space for one another; we share two quotes we found timely for this moment (plus, this guide on caring for your mental health). 

From Audre Lorde:

“Pain is important: how we evade it, how we succumb to it, how we deal with it, how we transcend it.”

“Our feelings are our most genuine paths to knowledge.”

Second, while we hope all of our institutions are intentionally considering the impact changes in campus practice have on our marginalized student communities, we know from our work on our campuses that we are often the ones advocating specifically for our students’ needs. While each institution’s circumstances are unique and most of us are operating at or past capacity, we encourage you to reach out to your colleagues for support and brainstorming as we negotiate these challenges. A couple of requests for practice-sharing have come over the practitioner listserv thus far—if you have a moment to share and offer support, please do. We also want to offer a reminder of our regional listservs and social media groups, which can be utilized to discuss resource sharing and set up calls to increase regional support. The Consortium also has a number of constituency Facebook groups and general social media channels, which are additional ways to stay connected and offer support to one another. 

Third, in terms of programming and support from the Consortium, we will do our best to continue our work as planned and to offer opportunities for community engagement for our membership. The Membership Engagement Collective has scheduled the spring constituency calls—these upcoming community gatherings will be an excellent opportunity to connect with colleagues. 

  • Trans, Non-binary, and Genderqueer
    • Constituency for members who identify as trans, non-binary, genderqueer, or another term outside of cisgender
    • Thursday, April 2 at 10:30 AM PT/11:30 AM MT / 12:30 PM CT / 1:30 PM ET
    • Access the Hangout video call at meet.google.com/bsv-cpiz-qia or call in via phone by calling +1 252-516-1110‬ PIN: ‪206 300 277‬#
  • People of Color
    • Constituency for members who identify as people of color
    • Monday, April 6 at 10:00 AM PT/11:00 AM MT/12:00 PM CT/1:00 PM ET
    • Access the Hangout video call at meet.google.com/cbo-spze-wqs or call in via phone by calling +1 470-735-3496‬ PIN: ‪813 092 404‬#
  • Seasoned Professionals
    • This is a new constituency for professionals who have been in LGBTQ+ resource professional roles for 7+ years.  This includes professionals who continue to work in LGBTQ+ resource professional roles, have advanced in their careers but previously worked in LGBTQ+ resource professional roles LGBTQ+ support roles, or continue to have LGBTQ+ support in their portfolios.
    • Tuesday, April 7 at 9:00 AM PT / 10:00 AM MT/ 11:00 AM CT/12:00 PM ET
    • Access the Zoom meeting at https://ucsd.zoom.us/j/445475890
  • LGBT2
    • Constituency for LGBTQ+ resource professionals and those who serve in LGBTQ+ support roles who do not serve as directors within their institutions (potential titles include Program Coordinators, Assistant and Associate Directors, etc.)
    • Tuesday April 14 at 10:30 AM PT / 11:30 AM MT / 12:30 PM CT / 1:30 PM ET
    • Access the Hangout video call at meet.google.com/mpm-nwqw-kfw or call in via phone by calling +1 414-909-5106‬ PIN: ‪716 025 702‬#

We appreciate your patience as we navigate our own capacities in this rapidly changing landscape. Please continue to reach out with questions or concerns- see below for a reminder on how to reach those with whom you need to connect. While there may be a slight delay in hearing from us, that is the best way to get in touch. 

Thank you for the important work you are doing in your communities. The history of the queer and trans communities’ strength and resilience feels particularly present now, and we hope it offers an anchoring point as we navigate what is to come. Thank you for your ongoing support, please reach out to share how we can support you, and, of course, wash your hands

In Solidarity, 

The Consortium Executive Board

 
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