NGLTF Executive Director To Step Down In May

March 05, 2003

Leaves Task Force in Strongest Financial & Management Shape Ever


Leaves Task Force in Strongest Financial & Management Shape Ever

The Board of Directors of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force announced today that Executive Director, Lorri L. Jean, will step down from her position at the completion of her two year contract on May 31, 2003. In June of this year, Jean, who resides in Los Angeles, will assume the position of C.E.O. at the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center, a $30+ million dollar social services organization which she led as Executive Director from 1993 to 1999. She will be joined there by current NGLTF Deputy Executive Director and long-time colleague, Darrel Cummings.

"Lorri put her life on hold to come and help us at a time when the organization was facing tremendous financial difficulties and overall instability," said Margaret Burd current board co-chair and member of the board for six years. "In the two years that she has been at the helm we not only have recovered from that instability but have positioned the organization to play an increasingly vital and effective role in the GLBT community for years to come."

"My work at the Task Force has been enormously gratifying," commented Jean. "We have accomplished what I was hired to do, and more, thanks to a remarkably talented staff and a dedicated board. Now it is time for a new leader to take the organization to its next stage. I am proud that the new Executive Director will inherit a strong organization that is well-poised to meaningfully lead our movement towards freedom, justice and equality and I am committed to ensuring a smooth transition of executive leadership for this vitally important GLBT organization."

Under the leadership of Jean, NGLTF accomplishments have included:

- Elimination of all short and long term debt and creation of a professional development program;

- Increasing the annual revenues to an all time high of $5 million;

- Securing the organization's first one million dollar grant for the expansion of the field organizing and training department;

- Creation of a field organizing department to focus the organization's political efforts at the state and local level, resulting in the defeat of nearly all anti-GLBT ballot measures in the last two years;

- Expanding the organization's national reach by opening and securing underwriting for a West Coast office in Los Angeles; the D.C. office also was relocated to a more accessible and work friendly location;

- Recruitment and development of a strong senior management team;

- Recruitment and development of a more experienced Board of Directors;

- Through the NGLTF Policy Institute, produced the largest-ever study of the experiences and priorities of Black GLBT people, along with several other publications examining family policy, same-sex households on the 2000 Census, AIDS risk among Latino gay men, and the threat welfare reform poses to GLBT people;

- Produced the second largest-ever Creating Change conference last November where all attendees grappled with how to build an anti-racist movement for GLBT equality.

"We greatly appreciate Lorri's tremendous efforts and are looking forward to the healthy and important future that will result," said board co-chair Loren Ostrow. "The new Executive Director will have opportunities that we have rarely been able to offer in the past. Plus, we're looking forward to a continuing productive relationship between the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center."

Jean, a dynamic leader with proven fundraising skills, has a long history of accomplishments. As a community leader in Los Angeles, she has received numerous honors and awards.

Among her major accomplishments are:

-Jean led the L.A. Center through a period of unprecedented expansion, dramatically increasing the number of clients and volunteers, the diversity and volume of services, the number of staff, and the size of the budget to make the Center the largest GLBT organization in the world. Under her leadership, the Center's annual budget grew from $8 million to $32 million, and private donor giving grew from $1 million to more than $9 million annually.

- Jean served as the president of Washington, D.C.'s Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance from 1986-1988. She was the lead plaintiff in the landmark successful lawsuit against Georgetown University charging sexual orientation-based discrimination.

- While at the L.A. Center, Jean co-founded the National Association of LGBT Community Centers, a coalition of centers serving the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The coalition meets annually at the Creating Change conference, convened by NGLTF Foundation.

In its commitment to ensuring a smooth transition for the organization, the NGLTF board of directors is currently conducting a search for Jean's successor and has already identified a small pool of extremely qualified candidates to interview.


The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.