Diverse & Resilient announced that Christopher Allen will be their new President and CEO, effective December 5, replacing Gerald Coon, who they said would “continue as a technical advisor during the transition.”
Diverse & Resilient is a statewide LGBTQ public health agency with offices in Milwaukee and Appleton. Their website outlines their objective as one to “eliminate health disparities between LGBTQ people and the general population, as measured by commonly accepted indicators of physical and mental health. These health disparities occur in four areas: Mental Health, Sexual Health, Partner & Community Violence, [and] Substance Use. The key social determinant of these health disparities is anti-LGBTQ discrimination. To that end, our work also includes efforts to increase acceptance, end discrimination, and build leadership skills and confidence among LGBTQ people.”
In a statement included in the press release, Christopher is quoted as saying, “I am honored to be able to return to Milwaukee and serve my community in a new capacity. Our mission has been a guiding force in my life since joining Diverse & Resilient as a Youth Advisor in 2002. I am determined to work towards a future where LGBTQ+ individuals are able to thrive, free of the systemic barriers that can prevent us from being able to realize our full potential. I look forward to working with and for our community to create opportunities that allow us to not just feel included but be included and affirmed in every space we inhabit.”
In addition to a new leader, Reiko Ramos (they/them) has been promoted to co-director of the Anti-Violence Program within the organization, joining Kathy Flores, who is the other co-director but will be transitioning to part-time to “focus on my health and learning to live more sustainably with my advancing disability,” according to a post written by Flores and posted on the Diverse & Resilient Instagram page. Flores continues, “in their new role, Reiko will be focusing on the program side of things including leading our youth program.” The organization will be announcing who will replace Reiko as Youth & Young Adult Advocate in January, according to the same Instagram post.