November 08, 2013 - GLAAD, the nation's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender ( LGBT ) media advocacy organization, today announced Professor Jennifer Finney Boylan and Steve Warren as Co-Chairs of its national Board of Directors. The Board of Directors also announced Leslie Donovan as Vice Chair of Development, Kevin Oldis as Vice Chair of Governance, Christopher Fraley as Secretary and David Hedley as Treasurer. Cody Lassen and Craig Zodikoff were elected as Members at Large. The Board of Directors also elected five new members: Vonzell Brown, Thad Florence, Christina Kahrl, Lana Moore and Anthony Watson.
Professor Boylan, an author and regular contributor to The New York Times, becomes the first transgender woman to serve as Co-Chair of GLAAD's Board of Directors.
"The transgender community continues to face alarming rates of violence and inequality while transgender people and issues remain relatively invisible in our national dialogue," said GLAAD Acting President Dave Montez. "Jenny's proven leadership will be instrumental as GLAAD continues to grow mainstream media attention and public understanding around transgender issues."
Warren received the Stephen F. Kolzak Award at the GLAAD Media Awards earlier this year for his work to advocate for LGBT equality in the entertainment industry.
"Steve is a true leader in the entertainment industry and his expertise will help to shape GLAAD's work to push for groundbreaking images of LGBT people and families in Hollywood," said Montez. "These images and stories not only inspire change here in the United States, but in countries around the world where discrimination against LGBT people sadly remains the norm."
Professor Jennifer Finney Boylan is a renowned academic, accomplished writer, and nationally known civil rights advocate. Her 13-book repertoire of short stories, novels, and young adult books includes her memoir She's Not There: a Life in Two Genders-the first bestselling work by a transgender American. Having appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show, Live with Larry King, the Today Show, the Barbara Walters Special, NPR's Marketplace, and Talk of the Nation, and the subject of CBS News' 48 Hours and documentaries on The History Channel, she also regularly contributes to the Op-Ed page of the New York Times and Conde Nast Traveler magazine. Professor Boylan has taught English at the prestigious liberal arts school Colby College since 1988. Boylan combines her advocacy and academics, traveling the country to speak at some of the best colleges and universities about trans equality and gender conventions. In recent years, the mother of two has won the Lambda Literary Foundation Prize, University of Massachusetts' "Stonewall Legacy" prize, and the title of "Professor of the Year" at Colby.
"GLAAD's commitment to the trans community is real and unwavering," said Boylan. "As transgender people continue to advocate for basic legal protections and recognition, the work that the staff of GLAAD is leading to proactively share stories of transgender people through the media is a game changer."
Steve Warren, a graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School, has been a practicing entertainment lawyer for twenty-seven years. He is a name partner at Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush & Kaller, LLP, specializing in the representation of actors, directors and writers. He served as the first out gay man on the Board of Trustees for the Archer School for Girls and the Center for Early Education, where his daughter attended. Warren joined GLAAD's Board of Directors in 2010 and is based in Los Angeles.
"Just over half of Americans support marriage equality, but that is not enough for me and it's not enough for GLAAD," said Warren. "GLAAD's strong track record in moving the media and our culture paved the way for our recent legal victories and is key to move new Americans around the country to stand with LGBT people and our families."
GLAAD amplifies the voice of the LGBT community by empowering real people to share their stories, holding the media accountable for the words and images they present, and helping grassroots organizations communicate effectively.