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April 22, 2002

New members, ideas introduced at LGBT

By Eric Rangus


New chair Kathy McKee took over and offered her vision for the next year of the LGBT Commission at the group’s final meeting of the 2001–02 academic year, April 16 in 400 Administration.

Touching on a theme that has been discussed at previous meetings, McKee said that while it has not had to deal with many hot-button issues in the recent past, the commission remains a viable and necessary entity.

“There are things that need to be addressed,” said McKee, a training specialist in Human Resources. “Maybe they haven’t reached a level where people are in a fervor about them. Perhaps they need to be in a fervor.”

McKee, who had been chair-elect, received a purple plastic tiara from outgoing Chair Mark Jordan in a tongue-in-cheek ceremony to inaugurate her tenure.

McKee thanked Jordan, who rolls into ex officio status, and said she wanted to build on several of his efforts as well as begin some of her own. McKee said she plans to continue Jordan’s legacy of maintaining a strong Oxford presence, counting on the committees to accomplish much of the commission’s tasks and keeping meetings on point and on time.

Other goals include taking steps to become more visible, reaching out to other campus LGBT organizations in order to synchronize programming, and improving communication.

McKee asked commission members to think over the summer about things they would like to accomplish next year. Ideas included possibly revisiting the campus climate survey for LGBT, which was stopped in midstream in early 2001. McKee also wanted to explore academic approaches to LGBT issues.

Many ideas came from new members attending their first meeting since joining the commission last month—and not all the ideas were limited to next year. One suggestion was to set up a commission booth at Staff Fest, May 17. That would be one way to increase the commission’s visibility, and members said they would follow up.

Other ideas included incorporating LGBT life into freshman orientation, having a “Meet the Commission” event similar to the informal “Meet the Deans” event put on by the Student Government Association, and strengthening ties to campus groups such as Emory Pride, the Employee Council and the other President’s commissions.

In one of his final orders of business as chair, Jordan asked the commission to approve a plan that would transfer any commission funds left over at the end of the fiscal year (Aug. 31) to the Office of LGBT Life. The plan was approved.

The LGBT commission will reconvene in September

If you have a question or comment for LGBT, send e-mail to Kathy McKee at