The District of Columbia is at the forefront of many LGBT issues. We have taken great strides forward to end discrimination based on sexual orientation in the areas of marriage, legal rights, and military service. And, we are beginning to see real change in political leaders’ attitudes toward our community. However, another question looms large: What’s next for the LGBT community? The DC Center has been considering this very question.
Since its founding in 2002, The DC Center for the LGBT Community has worked tirelessly to provide programming, services, resources, and a safe space for all LGBT people to gather. The Center works on a variety of key issues, including those affecting LGBT asylum-seekers living in D.C., plus health and wellness advocacy throughout the community. In addition, we are championing the LGBTQ homeless youth bill through the D.C. Council. The Center also features extensive arts programming and produces numerous cultural events and social gatherings.
The District is a city as diverse as any I have ever experienced. And, it is our intention that this diversity be represented in our programming and services. Lesbians are an important and vital constituency of The DC Center, and our doors are always open to the women’s community. Programs such as OutWrite, Capturing Fire Spoken Word Festival, and D.C. Queer Theatre Festival enjoy substantial participation from the lesbian community, as does our signature Beaujolais Nouveau Party,every November. We also produce a variety of social gatherings, such as relationship workshops, speed dating, and singles events, that bring together women of various ages.
As we continue to look for ideas to further involve lesbians in new and interesting ways, we want to hear from you.
For this reason, I am forming a Women’s Advisory Council for The DC Center. I invite anyone to join us who wants to both learn about The Center and help shape its future.
The important roles of this Women’s Advisory Council are twofold: (1) to help us understand how we can better meet your needs and (2) to envision and guide new programming and services for the women’s community in our city.
Having established a permanent home for The DC Center at the Reeves Center, the time is right to learn from our past and examine best practices to look toward a bright future. We need your voice and ideas to help us thrive.
Michael Fowler is Chair of the Board of Directors of The DC Center, 2000 14th Street NW, Suite 105 (at the corner of 14th and U streets NW). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org