Members of Hampton Roads Pride elected a new slate of Officers and Board of Directors and made local history by electing its first African American President and the first transgender person of color to its Board of Directors last night at the studios of WHRO in Norfolk.
Seven seats on the Board of Directors were up for grabs in this year’s election and members were given the opportunity to choose from 13 candidates, seven candidates were put forth by the Hampton Roads Pride Nominating Committee at the October membership meeting. Another six candidates were nominated from the floor in October.
All candidates were allowed two minutes to speak before the more than 100 attending the meeting before cast their ballots. Members that were unable to attend this meeting were allowed a proxy ballot. All ballots were tallied by a small team of volunteers from Hampton Roads Pride and two LGBTQ police liaisons.
Due to the number of ballots cast and the larger than usual number of candidates, tallying the ballots took longer than expected and members that stayed to learn the results of the election listened as outgoing Hampton Roads Pride President Michael Berlucchi gave a presentation about the successes and challenges the organization has faced during his tenure.
At times, a passionate dialogue ensued among those assembled about many issues facing the LGBTQ community in Hampton Roads, but the controversy surrounding the presence of the “Gays for Trump” group that exhibited at Pridefest in June dominated the conversation. Discussion was respectful with many points of view offered, demonstrating the diversity of experiences and opinions in the community.
Prior to adjourning, outgoing President Michael Berlucchi presented the newly elected members of Board of Directors who are as follows:
- Juan Alonso Sr
- David Coffman
- Ryan DeCorpo
- Charles Ford
- Taryn McLean
- Toni Stokes
- Joshua Weinstein
Following this announcement, the meeting was adjourned and the new Board of Directors held a short meeting to elect their new officers. The new officers are as follows:
- President: Fawn Faulks
- Vice President: Ginger Jenkot
- Treasurer: David Seeley
- Secretary: Rudy Almanzor