Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-03-03
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Local LGBT branch of Mensa to relaunch
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times
2015-01-20

This article shared 4641 times since Tue Jan 20, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


After nine years of dormancy, Chicago's LGBT Mensa group is in the process of reactivating with a new name—the LGBT and Allies Special Interest Group ( SIG ) of Chicago Area Mensa, part of American Mensa, Ltd. The group, originally known as Gay SIG, was founded in 1978 by Dick Stein.

Sixteen local area Mensa members met on Dec. 20 at Ann Sather Restaurant on West Belmont Avenue to discuss next steps including outreach to potential Mensa members in the wider LGBT community. Currently, the LGBT and Allies SIG of Chicago Area Mensa has 30 gay men and three women who are allies, but no women who identify as lesbian. Jim Cundiff, coordinator of the LGBT and Allies SIG, noted that the group is formulating a variety of social activities and informational campaigns to reach out to women, people of color and transgender persons.

"I'm excited that we now have the beginnings of a committed, organized group. Our next mission is to reach out to under-served communities and expand our presence in the community as a whole," said Cundiff. "Historically we've gotten all our members through the larger Chicago Area Mensa group ( ChiMe ) newsletter. This is the first time we're going to market directly to the LGBT community. To do that we have to go through the Chicago Area Mensa Board of Directors local secretary Heather Booton [the head of the local group]. I'm meeting with her on Jan. 24."

Cundiff explained that American Mensa is a social organization for people with high intelligence and curiosity—individuals who score in the top two percent on accepted, standardized intelligence tests. The organization has about 56,000 members in the United States and approximately 110,000 members globally.

"I re-activated the group because I wanted people who identify as LGBT as well as those who are super smart to have the opportunity to make friends just like I did when I joined three decades ago," Cundiff said. "I met my husband, Dale Woods, through Mensa 28 years ago and we're probably the first same-sex couple in the U.S. that met through Mensa and subsequently got married. We met at [Gerber/Hart board member] Norman Sandfield's house. Norman is also member of the LGBT and Allies SIG of Chicago Area Mensa."

As well as being a social group, Cundiff noted that the LGBT and Allies SIG will focus on service projects and recruiting efforts. Among the groups that Cundiff has already reached out to are the Chicago Gender Society and Illinois Gender Advocates. Cundiff said they will be reaching out to lesbian and people of color focused LGBT groups going forward. As far as service projects, Cundiff shared that the group is already at work on a compendium of scientific literature on homosexuality, bisexuality and transgender identity for distribution to the public in venues such as the Gerber/Hart Library and Northalsted Marketdays. The group will also focus on educating the public on the need for gifted student programs in all Illinois public schools and ad hoc volunteer programs benefitting the LGBT community.

"I don't think we've been successful at being a part of the larger community, i.e., be of service to the community. In our case the SIG within Mensa has two communities, the Chicago Area Mensa group and the LGBT community and we haven't done that in the past," said Cundiff. "I think that's one of the reasons the group deactivated itself nine years ago. It didn't have a sense of identity. One of my goals is to commit to being of service and have a sense of purpose rather that just being what one member called 'an insular group'."

"We plan on having small consistent publicity in places where the LGBT community shows up. We've never done that before. We want to break our insular attitude and expand it beyond just gay males," said Cundiff. "The problem we've had in the past is we've had women as members of our SIG but there were so few that sometimes it would be one woman who showed up at our events out of the five on our list and because of that they would lose interest. We need to develop a critical mass. What I would love to see happen is have a woman member take on a leadership role and represent that part of the community. That would be a great way to show that women are valued within the LGBT and Allies SIG. I want this to be an inclusive group."

Cundiff shared that among the many Mensans across the country is lesbian Mayor Annise Parker of Houston, Texas.

To join Mensa, individuals can submit prior evidence of qualification or take a proctored IQ test. Applicants have to provide evidence of a score in the top 2 percent of the general population on an accepted, standardized intelligence test. The partial list of accepted tests and scores can be found at www.us.mensa.org/testscores.

The next test for Chicago area Mensa will take place Saturday, Jan. 24, at 4 p.m. at 3705 Pleasant Dr., Rolling Meadows. The cost is $40. To secure a seat for the test, contact testing@chicago.us.mensa.org or call 312-666-1091.

For more information visit www.us.mensa.org or call 800-66-MENSA .


This article shared 4641 times since Tue Jan 20, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

PrEP options likely to change following Truvada patent expiration 2021-03-04
- Among the myriad challenges facing HIV/AIDS advocates and healthcare providers has been increasing use of pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, among persons at risk for HIV transmission. A PrEP intervention, which usually consists of taking the oral ...


Gay News

PPIA to feature Lauren Underwood on March 5 2021-03-02
- Planned Parenthood Illinois Action (PPIA) has announced a special Activist University Extra Credit session featuring Congresswoman Lauren Underwood on Friday, March 5, at 5:30 p.m. Kicking off Women's History Month ...


Gay News

COVID Lightfoot: Bars, restaurants can be at 50%, stay open until 1 a.m. 2021-03-02
- On March 2, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced that the city will allow bars and restaurants to boost indoor capacity to 50% and remain open until 1 a.m., The Chicago Tribune reported. Lightfoot also will allow ...


Gay News

APA adopts resolution opposing efforts to change people's gender identity 2021-03-02
--From a press release - WASHINGTON — The American Psychological Association has adopted a resolution opposing efforts to change people's gender identity, citing scientific research showing that such actions may be harmful. The resolution, adopted ...


Gay News

United Center vaccination appointments open Thursday for Illinois seniors 2021-03-02
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Beginning Thursday, March 4 at 8:30 a.m., Illinois seniors can schedule their first COVID-19 vaccine appointment at the United Center vaccine site, which will begin to administer a limited number of vaccines on March ...


Gay News

Howard Brown Health expands access to medical care of sexual-assault survivors 2021-03-02
- Howard Brown Health is now providing access to medical forensic exams and evidence collection for survivors of sexual assault on the North and South sides of Chicago through its In Power program. Together with local rape-crisis ...


Gay News

COVID Vaccinations at United Center starting March 10 2021-02-26
- On Feb. 26, the Biden administration, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, Chicago Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot, and U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth announced that eligible Illinoisans from every part ...


Gay News

Vaccine eligibility opens to Illinoisans with serious medical conditions 2021-02-25
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Building on efforts to equitably distribute the COVID-19 vaccine, Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Health today announced that Illinoisans with serious medical conditions can be vaccinated ...


Gay News

Dr. Rachel Levine confirmation hearing today, to be first trans Senate-confirmed appointee 2021-02-25
--From a press release - Washington, DC — Today Dr. Rachel Levine will testify before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions about her experience and qualifications to be the next U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health. If moved ...


Gay News

One-third of gay, bisexual men who take PrEP discontinue within three years 2021-02-25
--From a press release - Familiarity and favorable attitudes towards PrEP have increased over time, though use remains low A new study from the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law finds a significant increase in familiarity with pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) ...


Gay News

Victory Institute condemns Rand Paul attack on Dr. Rachel Levine, trans youth 2021-02-25
--From a press release - Washington, DC — Today LGBTQ Victory Institute condemned Senator Rand Paul's transphobic attack on Dr. Rachel Levine during her confirmation hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. He attacked trans you ...


Gay News

COVID Howard Brown Health COO talks vaccine rollout and race 2021-02-18
- On Feb. 13, Howard Brown Health hosted a citywide vaccination blitz at five community partner locations (New Beginnings Church of Chicago; 6620 S. King Dr.; Trinity United Church of Christ/TUCC; 400 W. 95th St.; Rising Sun ...


Gay News

COVID Chicago expands indoor dining capacity 2021-02-17
- The city of Chicago plans to reduce indoor dining restrictions for a second consecutive week, allowing bars and restaurants to offer service at either 40% capacity or 50 people, whichever is less, The Chicago Tribune reported. ...


Gay News

The Amazon Trail Covid 19 Pioneer 2021-02-13
- Now that President Biden and Vice President Harris are in office, I've been able to have my first Covid 19 vaccine shot. It was no big deal. I went to our county fairgrounds expecting to be injected through my car window, ...


Gay News

CDC establishes school-reopening guidelines 2021-02-13
- On Feb. 12, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that teachers and students should return to the classroom and can do so safely—even in areas with high rates of viral transmission—if certain mitigation ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.