Mandy Carter Jewel Week by dfgh4bnmu

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									                                                                   NATIONAL BLACK
                                                                   JUSTICE COALITION




Black History Month 2010 Special Edition, Issue Four                                                         www.nbjc.org



                                                                                                        Jewel
                                                                                                         of the
                                                                                                Week
                                                                                          Mandy Carter
                                                                                         Born in New York,
                                                                                        Citizen of the World
      White House Welcomes NBJC, HRC,                                                As we close out Black History Month,
                                                                                     we celebrate the contributions of a
    and LGBT HBCU Students For Signing of                                            well-respected colleague, activist,
                                                                                     friend, and mentor—Mandy Carter.
              Executive Order                                                        She is a legend in the LGBT
Today, National Black Justice                 this event. The students are Bennett   community, the Black community,
Coalition     (NBJC)       Executive          College senior Journalism and Media    and to all of us concerned about
Director Sharon J. Lettman and                Studies major Lauren Waters and        peace. Carter has sought to bring to
Board Vice Chair Donna Payne will             Winston-Salem State University         the national LGBT rights movement
join presidents of historically black         (WSSU) junior Psychology major         the lessons she’s learned in her 42
colleges and universities (HBCU)              Michael Evans.                         years of building the multi-issue,
across the country, key civil rights                                                 multi-racial progressive coalition.
                                  “The National Black Justice
leaders and select HBCU students                                                     “I’ve been a bridge-builder all of
                                  Coalition is honored to participate
as President Barack Obama signs                                                      my movement years,” she tells us.
                                  in this historic event by bringing
the executive order, “Promoting                                                      “A bridge-builder between white
                                  these future leaders to Washington,”               LGBT, Black, and people of color
Excellence,     Innovation,      and
                                  said Sharon J. Lettman, Executive                  LGBT movements.          A bridge-
Sustainability at Historically Black
                                  Director and CEO of NBJC. “We                      builder between our Black LGBT
Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)”
                                  feel that it is imperative to our                  community and Black non-LGBT
at the White House.
                                  sustainability and our future to                   community. I’ve always been willing
The David Bohnett Foundation mentor our youth for leadership                         to be ‘the only one’ of color in the
supported     this  extraordinary positions in the movement. Lauren                  predominantly white women’s peace
outreach opportunity by aiding and Michael should be praised for                     and social justice movements because
NBJC and the Human Rights their work on campus and in their                          the work was too important not to
Campaign’s (HRC) HBCU Project communities promoting equality                         be.”
to sponsor two LGBT students from and justice for all.”                              “Mandy has earned her place in
HBCUs invited to Washington for                         continues on page 2                             continues on page 3

                                                               1
                                        serve as a springboard for ideas      rights. He received the Ford
 Take Survey:                           and strategies that can improve the   Foundation Award to support
 Social Justice                         quality of life for LGBT people of    his work examining the role of
                                        color.                                intersectionality and race-based
 Sexuality Initiative                   The researchers are Prof. Juan
                                                                              marginalization within lesbian and
 NBJC members have been asked                                                 gay activism in the United States.
                                        Battle and Prof. Antonio ( Jay)
 to participate in a survey that        Pastrana. Prof. Battle is a Professor As part of NBJC’s 6th Anniversary
 celebrates the experiences of          of Sociology, Public Health, Urban celebration, we asked for your active
 LGBT people of color throughout        Education at the CUNY Graduate participation, and this is one of the
 the United States. The major goal      Center and a Fulbright Senior simplest, most straightforward
 is a better understanding of your      Specialist, with research interests ways you will find to raise your
 experiences in four major areas;       including race, sexuality, and social voice and make your experiences
 access to health and community-        justice. Further, he is a recent known.
 based services, civic engagement,      president of the Association of
 family, and religious experiences.                                           You can read more about it and take
                                        Black Sociologists. Prof. Pastrana
                                                                              the survey at SocialJusticeSexuality.
 This project aims to involve and       joined the Sociology Department
                                                                              com. It won’t take much time, and
 impact the policy makers,organizers,   at John Jay College of Criminal
                                                                              it’s a great way to help shape your
 academics and practitioners vital      Justice, CUNY, and his research
                                                                              community.
 to lasting community change and        interests are in Latina/o Studies,
 empowerment, and ultimately to         sexualities, race, and human


White House from page 1               “This is a huge step
                                      forward for the LGBT
Lauren Waters is co-president of
                                      community and within
B.R.I.D.E (Belles Recognizing
                                      the Black community.
Individuality      Diversity     and
                                      I feel humbled and
Equality), a campus organization
                                      honored to be a part of it,
at Bennett College committed
                                      and to represent LGBT
to making the school, “a more
                                      students on HBCU
positive and affirming place for
                                      campuses,” said Waters.
LGBTQ students as well as their
straight allies.” Waters is currently Michael Evans is a
conducting research on the mental devoted activist and Michael Evans                 Lauren Waters

and emotional health issues faced by advocate for the equality        work within the Black and Latino
young African Americans making and respect of same-gender loving communities, and has been recently
decisions about coming out in the individuals. Michael serves on the selected as the new Director of
Black community. Her research executive board of the WSSU Gay- Support Initiatives for Speak-Life,
focuses on family, church and Straight Student Alliance and also a new non-profit organization that
community responses to LGBT serves as a University Lead Health supports HIV/AIDS education and
people—and how those responses Peer Educator for the Office of training.
influence decisions about if, when Student Development. He served
                                                                      “This goes beyond any opportunity
and how to come out. Additionally, as a panelist at the 2009 Equality
                                                                      that you can bottle up. This is part
she is examining the relationship North Carolina Conference and
                                                                      of history, and I am incredibly
choices of young women who was recently selected as a 2010
                                                                      honored” said Evans. “I will be able
consider themselves “lesbians until Emerging Leader for the Human
                                                                      to look back on this and say the 44th
graduation” (LUG). Waters plans Rights Campaign Carolinas Gala.
                                                                      president, the first Black president,
to use her Journalism degree to He has been featured on a local
                                                                      acknowledged that I exist as an
advocate for the rights of LGBT radio station for his HIV/AIDS
                                                                      LGBTQ student in America.”
people of color in the media.         awareness efforts and advocacy
                                                                                                    continues on page 3
                                                         2
Mandy Carter from page 2                     organizing anti-Vietnam War civil
                                             disobedience action. Carter worked in
history,” said Dr. Sylvia Rhue, NBJC         the WRL’s regional field office in San
Director of Religious Affairs. “Martin       Francisco, where she became skilled in
Luther King wanted to be remembered          the tactics of the movement, particularly
as a drum major for justice. Mandy has       the principles of civil disobedience.
certainly led the band.”
                                             “Something about those ideas—
“HerStory”                                   working for change, activism, non-
Mandy Carter was raised in two               violence—intrigued me,” Carter told
orphanages and a foster home for her         Frankie Lennon, a writer for BLK, a
first 18 years as a ward of the state of     monthly newsmagazine that targeted
New York. It was in a high school social     its coverage of people, events and issues
studies class that the pacifist-based        to African American LGBT readers.
American Friends Service Committee           It was her participation in the Poor
representative addressed the class that      People’s Campaign in Washington,
was the genesis of her involvement in        D.C., she says, that solidified her life-
peace and social justice organizing all      long commitment to social, racial and
these years, in addition to the influences   LGBT justice organizing.                     Mandy Carter
of the former Institute for the Study
of Nonviolence run by Joan Baez and          In the late 1970s, Carter returned to San   independently, but together we can
Director Ira Sandperl.                       Francisco and became active in the city’s   change our communities,’” she wrote in
                                             gay and lesbian political movement.         Peacework magazine. This led to joint
She learned the tricks of the trade with     It was at this time that she became         meetings of the two groups and their
the War Resister’s League (WRL) —a           more drawn to community organizing.         LGBT counterparts, who also had a
group founded in the 1920s by men and        She maintained her commitment to            seat at the table. Most importantly,
women opposed to World War I—by              nonviolent resistance, while she also       it led to a strong voting coalition that
                                             began to see electoral organizing as        elected progressive Black and white
 White House from page 2                     a catalyst for social change—a clear        candidates. They created an agenda for
 HRC’s HBCU program launched                 example of this being the election of       change, and would soon run candidates
                                             Harvey Milk to the San Francisco            in Durham city and county seats that
 in 2002 in the wake of a swell of
                                             Board of Supervisors in 1977.               won.
 violence against LGBT students at
 HBCUs, and is led by Joey Gaskins           In 1982, Carter moved to Durham,            These experiences prepared her for
 and NBJC Board Vice Chair                   North Carolina working in WRL’s             the next challenge that she took on—
 Donna Payne as a part of HRC’s              Southeast office. It was here that          unseating North Carolina Senator Jesse
 Diversity Department. It educates           her organizing to build a stronger          Helms, who notoriously championed
                                             progressive coalition really took shape.    segregationist, racist, and homophobic
 and organizes students, faculty and
                                             She served on the planning committee        policies. At the behest of National
 administrators on LGBT issues                                                           Gay and Lesbian Task Force staffer
                                             for the annual Lesbian and Gay Pride
 specific to each institution’s needs.       march, and worked as a National             Sue Hyde, Carter and several Durham
 It also opens campus-wide debate            Steering Coordinator for the Lesbian        activists formed North Carolina Senate
 on LGBT issues, often for the first         and Gay March on Washington in              Vote ’90, the first statewide political
 time, and trains students to build          1987. She was also involved in Rhythm       action committee of LGBT people and
 viable student-led LGBT-friendly            Fest, an annual festival of music, art,     allies, united to unseat Helms. Carter
 organizations on campus.                    and politics for Southern women.            served as campaign director.

 “NBJC is proud to partner with the          At the time Carter moved to Durham,         “We needed to work from a broader
 Human Rights Campaign’s HBCU                the city’s mayor and city council were      framework of equality and justice for
 program in this endeavor. They              conservative amid a sizeable but            all. Asking the rhetorical question, ‘Are
                                             racially divided progressive community.     we about justice, or just us?’ we figured
 are a valuable ally in identifying,
                                             The problem, they realized, was not in      out who our coalition partners would
 mentoring and supporting African                                                        be by looking up Helms’ voting record,”
                                             their numbers, but in their division.
 American LGBT future leaders in             “Perceptive, far-thinking activists in      she wrote.
 this movement,” said Lettman.               both groups realized ‘We can’t do this                             continues on page 4


                                                                3
Mandy Carter from page 3                   with Shades of
The coalition partners working to defeat   P r i d e / Tr i a n g l e
Helms included arts, environmental,        Black Pride 2010,
and pro-choice advocates, along with       for which Carter
LGBT, minority, youth, and senior          serves as a board
citizen communities. Helms managed         member.
to win re-election in 1990, with the       From those early
help of the campaign worker James          days with WRL
Meredith—the first Black student to        to working on the
attend the University of Mississippi       campaigns to unseat
and an important symbol in the history     Jesse Helms, Carter
of desegregation—and a white gay man       has been involved
who despised Helms but could not           in just about every
bear to vote for a Black man, challenger   aspect of activism
Harvey Gantt.                                                      Mandy Carter and Coretta Scott King
                                           and       organizing
Helms won again in 1996, but the within the LGBT                                      In addition to this extraordinary honor,
lasting legacy of these campaigns was      Equality Movement. The organizations her numerous awards and accolades
“a statewide infrastructure needed to she’s helped to found are numerous, include the 1990 North Carolina
organize in all 100 counties in the state including Southerners On New Ground Lesbian and Gay Pride Community
and helped build progressive multi- (SONG), which she founded in 1993 Service Award; the 1993 War Resister’s
issue and multi-racial coalitions,” she at the Creating Change conference in League Peace Award; the 1993 Gay
wrote. “Now I tell people, ‘Jesse Helms Durham. SONG connects activists and Lesbian Attorneys of Washington,
has come and gone. But as a community in the South who believe in liberation D.C.’s Distinguished National Service
and a movement, we’re still here. We’ve regardless of race, class, culture, gender, Award; the Mab Segrest Award from
outlasted Jesse Helms.’”                   and sexuality. SONG integrates work North Carolinians Against Religious
                                           against homophobia into freedom and Racist Violence (NCARRV);
The Ultimate Honor: “1000                  struggles in the South.                    the North Carolina Independent’s
Women for Peace”                                                                      Humanitarian Award; the Bayard
                                           If that weren’t enough, we are proud
                                                                                      Rustin Award for Political Activism in
Carter continues to break down to note that Carter is also an NBJC
                                                                                      1999; the Gay & Lesbian Advocates
barriers across the country and in her founding board member. “Mandy is
                                                                                      & Defenders (GLAD) 2006 Spirit
hometown.                                  phenomenal. In the 15 years I have
                                                                                      of Justice honoree; the Susan J. Hyde
                                           known her, I have seen a consistent
“An historic first happened at the                                                    Activism Award from the National
                                           laser beam focus on the issues of
Durham-based         North      Carolina                                              Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF)
                                           peace, LGBT rights and oppressed
Central University (NCCU) with the                                                    in 2008, and a long list of others.
                                           constituencies,” said Dr. Sylvia Rhue.
screening of ‘Brother Outsider-The
                                           “When I need counsel, I call Mandy. A member of the Democratic National
Life of Bayard Rustin’ during NCCU’s
                                           When I need information, I call Mandy. Committee’s Black Caucus and its Gay
Black History Month,” she said. The
                                           When I need a friend, I call Mandy. She and Lesbian Caucus, Carter was named
screening at NCCU, one of North
                                           has always been there giving support, as then-Senator Obama’s LGBT
Carolina’s 11 historically Black colleges,
                                           guidance and occasional humor.”            steering committee co-chair during
was sponsored by the school’s LGBT
                                                                                      the 2008 Presidential Campaign. She
student groups NCCU COLORS and Carter’s leadership and activism
                                                                                      is optimistic that the Employment
NCCU Duke Outlaw, in collaboration garnered her a nomination for the 2005
                                                                                      Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)
                                                        Nobel Peace Prize as part
                                                                                      will be passed under the Obama
                                                        of the 1000 Women for
   “Now I tell people, ‘Jesse Helms Peace project. She was Administration.
   has come and gone. But as a one of 41 women from the “In my opinion, this has community, just
                                                        United States included in key issue for our LGBT
                                                                                                               always been the

   community and a movement, the 1000 peace women, as equal access to employment was for
                                                        as was Barbara Smith, women and race and ethnicity was for
   we’re still here. We’ve outlasted another Black lesbian and people of color. We must have federal
   Jesse Helms.’”                                       co-founder of Kitchen protection for employment.”
                                                        Table Press with Audre                                  continues on page 5
                                 — Mandy Carter
                                                        Lorde.
                                                                   4
Mandy Carter from page 4                     Carter has many passions. Certainly        legacy in her four decades of service in
                                             we all know of her dedication              social justice activism and the LGBT
Political Trouble Making
                                             and commitment to social justice,          Equality Movement.
When asked about who she looks to            particularly for LGBT people. Few of
as her hero/heroine, she cites Bayard                                                   In a 2008 speech, NGLTF’s Sue Hyde
                                             us, however, know about her passion
Rustin and Audre Lorde.                                                                 said that Carter represents “forty years
                                             for women’s college basketball. She is
                                                                                        of political trouble making.”
“They were both ‘out’ and left an            a long-time season ticket holder for
amazing historic legacy, each in their       Duke University’s women’s basketball       “The movement is eternally grateful
own right,” she said. “Bayard for his        team in Durham, N.C. who arranges          for Mandy Carter’s ‘political trouble
role in the 1963 March on Washington         part of her life and work around making    making,’” said Sharon J. Lettman,
and being a pacifist and multi-issue         sure she can watch the playoffs.           Executive Director and CEO of NBJC.
organizer like I am today. Audre for                                                    “If you’ve ever received an email from
                                             Within the LGBT Movement, Carter
being a Black lesbian author/activist                                                   her, she often signs off with the phrase,
                                             would be our point guard—our
who co-founded Kitchen Table Press.”                                                    ‘For peace, justice, and equality!’ Today,
                                             playmaker and ball handler. She has
                                                                                        we honor Mandy Carter as NBJC’s
“My major regret is that when I was          been a general on the court, controlling
                                                                                        Jewel of the Week for her life’s work,
coming out in high school as a young         the ball and passing it to the right
                                                                                        her calling, and her enduring legacy of
Black lesbian, I didn’t know of any Black    players at the right time.
                                                                                        peace, justice, and equality.”
gay men or Black lesbians. And had I         Perhaps the most important duty of
known about Bayard or Audre Lorde,                                                      Article by Stacey Gates, NBJC
                                             the point guard is to create scoring
it would have had a major impact on                                                     Communications Manager.
                                             opportunities for teammates—and
me self-identifying as a lesbian of color,   that has been Mandy Carter’s lasting
and not just a lesbian.”




                                                           NATIONAL BLACK JUSTICE COALITION
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                                                           Office: 202.319.1552 Fax: 202.319.7365 info@nbjc.org
                                                                                 www.nbjc.org



                           NBJC BOARD MEMBERS                                                    NBJC STAFF
      Kylar W. Broadus, Esq.                     The Honorable Darryl Moore             Sharon J. Lettman-Hicks
      Board Chair                                Board Treasurer                        Executive Director & CEO
      Associate Professor, Lincoln University    Berkeley City Council, District 2
      Columbus, MO                               Berkeley, CA                           Dr. Sylvia Rhue
                                                                                        Director of Religious Affairs
      Michelle E. Brown                          Donna Payne
      Author / Activist                          Board Vice Chair                       Stacey Gates
      Detroit, MI                                Assoc. Director of Diversity,          Press Secretary/
                                                 Human Rights Campaign                  Communications Manager
      Zandra R. Conway
                                                 Washington, DC
      Board Secretary
      Senior Consultant, PRDesign Group          Karen Williams
      Atlanta, GA                                Entertainer/Founder,
                                                 Humor and Healing Arts Institute
      Alan-Michael S. Graves, Esq.
                                                 Cleveland, OH
      Los Angeles, CA
      Leslye M. Huff, Esq.
      Cleveland, OH




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