• A man surrounded by women

      D.A. George Gascón (center) with some of the newly sworn-in members of the Advisory Board (L-R) Stella Ursua, Ari Gutiérrez Arámbula, Bamby Salcedo and Skylar Myers. (Photo – LADA)

      On Tuesday, April 25, L.A. County District Attorney George Gascón announced the creation of the office’s first-ever LGBTQ+ Advisory Board.

      By News Desk

      The LGBTQ+ Advisory Board will be one of several Advisory Boards that will provide valuable community input into his work building a safer and healthier county for all.

      The Board will advise the District Attorney’s Office regarding policies, priority issues, and best practices related to LGBTQ+ Angelenos and the criminal justice system. The Advisory Board will meet regularly, seek input from the greater community, and provide regular feedback on improvements to better serve LGBTQ+ residents and all those who come into contact with the office, as well as improve diversity and inclusion within the office itself.

      The LGBTQ+ Advisory Board members include:

      Bamby Salcedo, Chair (she/her/ella) is the President and CEO of the TransLatin@ Coalition, a nationally recognized organization that advocates for and addresses the issues of transgender Latinas throughout the United States. Salcedo is a passionate and celebrated transgender Latina activist and has collaborated with local and national organizations to establish services and visibility for numerous LGBTQ+ issues and topics.

      Vincent Jones, Vice-Chair (he/him) is the CEO of the The Citizen Jones Companies, a collection of socially minded businesses created with the spirit of doing good, having fun and helping others do the same. He is a recognized leader in the LGBTQ+ community for his work in philanthropy, non-profits, politics, government, communications, travel and social entrepreneurship.

      • Allison Blaylock (she/her)
        Allison is the President of the OUTreachCenter in Lancaster. She also advocates for the awareness and ending of domestic violence within the LGBTQ+ community through the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s STOP program.
      • Chela Demuir (she/her)
        Chela is the Founder of the “TransGivingDinner,” a dinner with all the traditional trimmings of a holiday meal that is now celebrated in various states across the country. Demuir is also a founding member of Trans Pride LA and Unique Woman’s Coalition.
      • Ari Gutiérrez Arámbula, MBA (she/her/ella)
        Ari is an Advocate for the Latinx LGBTQ+ community. Through her career in marketing and advertising, Gutiérrez Arámbula has been able to influence her business, communications and political networks to empower Latinx LGBTQ+ people and their families, as well as producing the Latino LGBTQ+ Pride Festival and co-founding the HONOR Political Action Committee and the Latino Equality Alliance.
      • Joey Hernández (they/them)
        Joey is Director of Policy and Community Building Department at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. Hernández has engaged in LGBTQ+ rights advocacy for over 15 years and they currently direct the Center’s policy advocacy, grassroots community organizing, and international programs to protect and expand the rights of the LGBTQ+ community.
      • Skylar Myers (they/them)
        Skylar is a Victims Rights Advocate for the Anti-Violence Project at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. Myers’ work with the LGBTQ+ community has involved serving as a homeless youth advisor and mentor and empowering marginalized and often victimized communities for more than a decade.
      • Brad Sears, J.D. (he/him)
        Brad is the Founding Executive Director and David Sanders Distinguished Scholar of Law & Policy at the Williams Institute and is the Associate Dean of Public Interest Law at UCLA Law. Sears has published a number of research studies, primarily on discrimination against LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV; taught courses on LGBTQ+ and disability law at various law schools; and has testified before Congress and state legislatures, authored amicus briefs in key court cases, helped to draft state and federal legislation and has been frequently cited by national media.
      • Stella Ursua (she/her/hers)
        Stella is the Board President/Chair at the LGBTQ+ Center Long Beach and Programs & Partnerships Manager of GRID Alternatives-Greater Los Angeles. Ursua can be found in equity-challenged and/or environmentally disadvantaged communities, working to build more awareness for social issues such as LGBTQ+ rights, environmental health, green neighborhoods and careers, and ensuring that all community members have access to the programs, services, education, knowledge and skills that will help them thrive.

      “The contributions that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people have made to society make up a rich part of U.S. history. Sadly, LGBTQ+ people have long been subjected to public hostility, discrimination, and violence,” District Attorney Gascón said.  “This new Advisory Board creates a precedent for this office to truly listen and learn from the LGBTQ+ community and inform my policies.”

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