The Board of Directors of the LGBTQ Center of Durham
Helena Cragg Board Chair
Helena is a native of New York City, who also spent many years in Cambridge, MA after graduating from M.I.T. with a B.S. in Computer Science as well as an MBA from M.I.T.’s Sloan School of Management. After moving to Atlanta she became a Real Estate Broker and a Remodeling contractor.
Since coming to Durham in 2003 she has been able to further her love for restoring historic homes and getting involved in active and engaged communities. She and her wife Sylvia call Old North Durham home where Helena is currently serving as co-President of the neighborhood association. This year Helena promises to finish their own personal home!
Mykal SlackVice Chair
Mykal is a native of Georgia and, after spending many years in the NE practicing law and discerning a call to ministry, he is happy to be back in the South & settled in Durham. An ordained MCC pastor, he is the founder & director of 4LYFE, an ecumenical consulting ministry that works with communities of faith & connection to help them create safe and celebratory spaces for people of all sexual orientations & gender identities and to address issues of anti-oppression more broadly. He also serves the Freedom Center for Social Justice as their Co-Director. Mykal sits on the Advisory Group for the Center for African American Religion, Sexual Politics and Social Justice and on the Trans*/GNC Advisory Council of MCC.
If Mykal's not facilitating workshops on welcome and community-building, leading worship somewhere, or writing, you're likely to find him singing or dancing at the Pinhook, coloring in one of his many coloring books, or baking at home. He lives with his spouse, LeLaina, near Duke Forest.
Milan grew up in Charlotte and considers herself a native North Carolinian with the minor caveat of not being born in the United States. She graduated from UNC Law School and has been living the dream ever since.
She practices law every day with her best friend and an amazing mentor from their offices in a funky old victorian in Durham Central Park. In her spare time, she serves on the board of Planned Parenthood of Central north Carolina and contemplates taking tango classes
Milan lives in Durham with her wife Tessa and their menagerie of four dogs, two cats, and two chickens so far.
Rachel Dooley Secretary
A public health nerd by day and a social justice warrior by night, Rachel is a passionate advocate for vulnerable and underserved populations.
Rachel currently works at the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and does organizational development consulting with community-based organizations on the side.
In their free time, Rachel enjoys camping, running (slowly) and hiking with their dog Theo, and eating good food with family and friends. An Atlanta native, Rachel now happily calls Old North Durham home.
Juan is native from Borinquen, an Indian name for Puerto Rico. Juan relocated from Florida to NC after a vacation trip to Asheville where he fall in love with the state. He has earned an AA degree in Psychology from Durham Tech and proudly received his Bachelors at NCCU. Juan currently works as a Certified Application Counselor at Lincoln Community Health Center where he has been certified to guide and support individuals & families of diverse backgrounds and facilitate enrollment in appropriate public health insurance programs (ACA & Medicaid). Juan has experience working with community members, local health department, State Disease Intervention Specialists (DIS) and AIDS service organizations. Engaging the communities to bring those who know their HIV status but are not in medical care into the healthcare system providing supportive counseling and guidance to help maintain access and to medical care (retention). He participates in the creation of the “Sharing Stories, Creating Hope” DVD by Merck Pharma. He believes that if people have the proper tools and knowledge “everything will be possible” for anyone.
Bart couldn't be more proud to have been a part of the core volunteers who worked to bring the LGBTQ Center of Durham to life. The process has been rewarding in so many ways, but one of the greatest of those has been meeting people within the community and learning about their experience.
Bart moved to Durham in 2008 from Raleigh. He’s glad he made the move. He lives in Old North Durham with his precocious furr-son Bates, and Hawesome housemate Julia. By day, he's a project manager in pharmaceutical research. In his spare time he enjoys continuing to explore Durham, collecting music, and travel near and far.
Davis is a North Carolina native with a degree from UNC Greensboro in Gender Studies and English Literature. His passions in life are social justice, white anti-racism, Trans advocacy, and nice dogs.
For money, Davis is the Grocery Manager at the Durham Co-op Market. For fulfillment, he facilitates Trans Talk Tuesday with the LGBTQ Center of UNC Chapel Hill. He is also a Co-Founder of QORDS (Queer Oriented Radical Days of Summer,) an overnight summer camp program for southern LGBTQ youth.
James Spivey is a retired government employee. He has a Master Degree in Public Administration. In his past employment, he planned, developed, and implemented educational outreach regarding social justice – such as human rights, human relations, various forms of discrimination, diversity training, etc. Currently, he continues to seek opportunities to promote the mandate that all individuals should have the expectation and the right to equality, equal opportunity, fair treatment, and to live and function in an environment devoid of any and all forms of discrimination or oppression. He stresses that our youth are the ones to make this dream, this idea, this human right of equality a reality.
A love of adventure, the outdoors, and global service follows Meredith on her world travels as a leader for service trips with the YMCA and Rotary International to Peru, Costa Rica and Australia. Meredith currently works in risk management and prevention for the YMCA of the Triangle where she specializes is child sexual abuse prevention and sharing her experiences in youth programming with Y employees and also in the community with other public advocacy and youth serving organizations. Meredith has a BA in Recreation Management from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington as well as certifications from several organizations to provide evidence based training curriculum to the public.
Meredith lives in Northgate Park with her dog Tanner and in her spare time they visit Durham hospitals, schools, faith organizations, and libraries as a certified animal therapy team.
Having grown up all over the country, choosing Durham as home was easy for Meredith, “it’s a southern city with progressive tastes and friendly people.” She is honored to serve with the LGBTQ Center to provide a place where kindness and acceptance is the norm and a shining example in the community.
Michael has been a Durham resident since 2009 and enjoys frequenting many of Durham’s top food and drink spots around town, sampling the local cuisine and tasting some of the local brews. Occasionally you’ll find his lovable and playful 7 year old rescue pal Kota, tagging along begging for samples.
Michael is a native North Carolinian, having lived throughout the state for most of his life. Growing up a Tar Heel fan led Michael to attending school at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he received a degree in Recreation Administration. For fun, Michael enjoys running, competing in several races each year and enjoying the friendships he makes as well as the challenges he places upon himself. Besides running, Michael enjoys travel, cooking, college baseball, basketball and football; hiking, camping, and anything outdoors that allows him time to spend with Kota.
Michael currently works as the Development Director for the Conservation Trust for North Carolina, a state-wide non-profit working to connect people to the outdoors and working to protect, save and conserve land across North Carolina.
LGBTQ Center of Durham Committees
The initial standing and ad-hoc committees of the LGBTQ Center of Durham are:
The Governance Committee is charged with managing the incorporation process, the creation of bylaws, and managing at a high level the relationship between the LGBTQ Center of Durham and the LGBT Center of Raleigh.
The Communications Committee is charged with maintaining the social media presence of the LGBTQ Center of Durham, promoting its activities, and guiding all brand-related and public messaging efforts.
The Social Committee is charged with developing and organizing activities that support the social mission of the center, such as community building, outreach, and the creation and management of support and interest groups.
The Development Committee is charged with raising funds for the LGBTQ Center of Durham by managing the relationship with potential donors and grantors.
Community Assessment Committee
The Community Assessment Committee is charged with creating and maintaining a database of resources that may be available to the LGBTQ Center of Durham or to its members individually. Such resources include other organizations with which the LGBTQ Center of Durham may wish to collaborate in the future.
LGBTQ Center of Durham Programs
Shades of Pride
As of March 2015, the LGBTQ Center of Durham and Shades of Pride have merged to become The LGBTQ Center of Durham, Inc. a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions to The LGBTQ Center of Durham, Inc. are fully tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. EIN/Tax ID # 27-1277498
Shades of Pride continues on to do bigger and better things, under the leadership of LaToya Hankins, as a program of the LGBTQ Center of Durham.
LGBTQ Center of Durham Organizational Documents
Draft ByLaws Board Minutes