Leadership - Los Angeles LGBT Center

Since 1969 the Los Angeles LGBT Center has cared for, championed, and celebrated LGBT individuals and families in Los Angeles and beyond.

Today the Center's nearly 800 employees provide services for more LGBT people than any other organization in the world, offering programs, services, and global advocacy that span four broad categories: Health, Social Services and Housing, Culture and Education, Leadership and Advocacy.

Despite our size, scope, and determination to meet the growing demand for our services, we remain a lean, fiscally disciplined organization, earning a four-star Charity Navigator rating for eleven consecutive years.

We are an unstoppable force in the fight against bigotry and the struggle to build a better world, a world in which LGBT people can be healthy, equal, and complete members of society.

Learn more with our At-A-Glance fact sheet.

Leadership

About the Center Leadership

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SENIOR MANAGEMENT GROUP

Chief Executive Officer Joe Hollendoner, MSW

Joe joined the Los Angeles LGBT Center team in July 2021 as the Executive Director, formerly serving as CEO of the San Francisco AIDS Foundation (SFAF), and before that he was chief of staff and first deputy commissioner at the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH), the nation’s third largest health department.

Joe has been part of the LGBTQ movement since coming out as gay at the age of 16. With more than 25 years of movement leadership, he has proven himself to be a trusted collaborator and ally to all members of the LGBTQ community.

During Joe’s tenure at SFAF, he spearheaded the adoption of a five-year strategic plan that prioritized the expansion of health and social services and established racial justice as a fundamental principle to guide the organization’s growth. In addition, Joe grew revenue by 84 percent and significantly increased corporate and private donations to support the organization’s life-saving services.

Prior to SFAF, Joe served in leadership roles at the CDPH and managed the department's operations and strategic initiatives to advance the city's public health agenda and improve the health of Chicago residents. During his tenure, CDPH was named "Health Department of the Year" and was the first large health department to receive accreditation by the Public Health Accreditation Board. Prior to his work in the public sector, Joe was in executive leadership roles at Chicago's two largest private HIV services providers: as senior vice president at AIDS Foundation of Chicago and as vice president / chief program officer at Howard Brown Health Center.

In 2004, Joe was the founding director of the Broadway Youth Center (BYC) the first center of its kind for LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness. In 2010, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation named him a Community Health Leader for his leadership in the creation of the BYC.

Joe earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in social work from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a focus in community development, public policy and organizational leadership. He continued his postgraduate education by completing public health independent coursework at DePaul University and is a 2016 fellow of the University of Chicago's Civic Leadership Academy.

Joe comes to the Center - and Southern California - with his husband, Bill, and their two dogs, Thor and Bolt.

Chief Development Officer Saurabh Bajaj

 

Chief Financial Officer Ricardo DeLeon, MBA

Prior to joining the Los Angeles LGBT Center in August 2020, Ricardo DeLeon served as Chief Operating Officer of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF), the nation’s largest non-profit organization that supports Hispanic Americans pursuing higher education. Prior to HSF, he spent more than 25 years with Procter & Gamble in senior finance positions. Born and raised in Texas, DeLeon received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University and his M.B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis.

He has served on a number of boards primarily of youth-serving nonprofits and spent three years as president of the Association of Latino Princeton Alumni.

Chief Impact Officer Sharon Brown

As Chief Human Resources Officer for the Los Angeles LGBT Center, Sharon is responsible for managing all operations of the Human Resources Department for a staff of nearly 800 employees, including organizational development, strategic planning, recruitment/hiring, benefits administration, personnel policies and organized labor relations. She has worked for the Center since 2007 and also currently serves as the President of the Board of Directors for Christopher Street West Association/LA Pride.

Sharon’s story begins in Louisiana where she grew up in the rural South in a small, one stop light town. Right out of high school she joined the United States Navy Reserves and served with honor while attending the University of Louisiana Monroe. During this time, Sharon began a journey of self-discovery freely expressing her true gender identity. Sharon graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration/Pre-Law.

Her early career included restaurant management, legal services, academia and non-profit. In 1997, she was a City Council candidate for Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, making her the first openly transgender candidate to run for public office in the state. Sharon became a national speaker on transgender rights after being terminated from Fayetteville State University, a historically black university, for being a trans-woman. Sharon was on the leading edge during her speaking engagements at colleges and universities on the importance of including gender identity and gender expression in their anti-discrimination policies.

In 2010, she co-wrote the ground-breaking recommendations for “Model Protocols – Police Interactions with Transgender Individuals” which was later adopted by the Los Angeles Police Department as policy. In 2018, Sharon Co-Chaired the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County HR Roundtable. Today, she serves on the Board of LA Pride and participates in LGBTQ competency trainings with various organizations on best practices in navigating change in the workplace, with a specialized focus on helping healthcare organizations improve delivery of services to the LGBTQ community.

Chief Impact Officer Terra Russell-Slavin, Esq.

Terra Russell-Slavin, Esq., is the Chief Impact Officer at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. The Center is the world’s largest provider of programs and services for LGBTQ people, with a staff of 750 people and a budget of more than $150 million. As Chief Impact Officer, Terra works to advance LGBTQ rights and participates in all organizational decision-making as a member of the senior management team. She has specific responsibilities for executive oversight of all human services at the Center, including homeless youth services, senior services, policy and advocacy, and legal services. She is also actively engaged in expanding the Center’s women’s health services and oversees the Center’s National LGBTQ Intimate Partner Violence Institute.

In her more than 16 years at the Center, Terra has also served as the Director of Policy and Community Building and Lead Staff Attorney. During that time, she has regularly worked in coalitions at the local, state, and national level. This work included collaboration with other community-based service providers representing LGBTQ community groups, larger community non-profits and governmental entities. Terra is a subject-matter expert on issues related to LGBTQ domestic violence and chairs the LGBTQ Subject Matter Committee for the National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence. She was a leader in the efforts to obtain the first ever non-discrimination provisions in federal law based on sexual orientation and gender identity as part of the 2013 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). She also serves on the California Office of Heath Equity’s Advisory Commission.

She has provided trainings on LGBTQ cultural responsiveness to thousands of advocates and providers across the country, presented at numerous national conferences, regularly testifies before public commissions, and serves as a media spokesperson on an array of policy issues. Terra received the Los Angeles County Betty Fisher Award for phenomenal leadership in the field of domestic violence and has been recognized by the National LGBT Bar Association as a Best Attorney Under 40. Terra has a bachelor’s degree from Pitzer College and J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law. She resides in Altadena, CA with her wife and child.

Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Phillip Picardi

Phillip Picardi is an award-winning journalist and editor best known for his role in helping to revolutionize Teen Vogue. Under Picardi’s leadership, the digital audience of Teen Vogue grew from just 2 million unique visitors per month to over 12 million, making the Condé Nast title the fastest-growing women’s magazine in America for two years running. While at Teen Vogue, Picardi was appointed by Anna Wintour to oversee digital operations of Allure, where he was in charge of raising metrics and affiliate revenue. Shortly thereafter, Picardi was dubbed “The Prince of Condé Nast” by The New York Times, and went on to launch a community-driven platform for LGBTQ+ youth called them, which amassed over 200,000 Instagram followers organically in under one year.

Picardi was later tapped to rebrand and relaunch Out Magazine, the largest and most influential publication for the queer and trans community. There, Picardi increased digital traffic by over 150% while leading the most diverse staff in the brand’s history. His work culminated in the prestigious 2019 Out100, a multi-cover portfolio and reported series that was widely celebrated and awarded by GLAAD.

Picardi recently graduated from Harvard Divinity School, where he was just one of 11 students selected for the inaugural Masters of Religion and Public Life program. His studies coincided with a podcast about religion from Crooked Media called Unholier Than Thou and a newsletter titled Religiously Blonde. His book, Is Jesus Kinda Hot?, is due in 2024.

During Picardi’s career, he has contributed to brand campaign and experiential for clients like Levi’s, Ralph Lauren, Lego, Burberry, and Nike. He is also the recipient of multiple awards and honors, including the Forbes 30 Under 30, Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People, the AdWeek Hot List, and more.

Chief Health Officer Ward Carpenter, MD

Dr Ward Carpenter is a board-certified internist, HIV specialist and nationally-recognized expert in transgender medicine and LGBT primary care. He earned his medical degree from UMDNJ – Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Jersey where he first discovered his passion for community health. He has spent the majority of his medical career providing LGBT-specialized primary care to underserved populations, both in NYC at Callen-Lorde Community Health Center and at the Los Angeles LGBT Center where he started in 2013 as the Director of Primary Care. Dr Carpenter now serves as the Center’s Chief Health Officer, overseeing all medical and related services. He continues to see a panel of patients for HIV care, transgender care and general primary care and approaches the practice of medicine from an integrative perspective, helping patients to identify their own health priorities and to choose the right path to achieve their individual goals. Dr Carpenter lives in Pasadena with his husband and three dogs.

Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Gerald Garth

Gerald Garth, from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, serves as the Center’s first Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). Gerald served as Chief Operations Officer (COO) of the AMAAD Institute (Arming Minorities Against Addiction and Disease) and Manager of Prevention and Care with the Black AIDS Institute (BAI), the first for each organization.

Gerald serves on numerous boards, coalitions, and alliances committed to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. Gerald has provided capacity building, training, and leadership in DEI with several agencies around the country, including AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), In The Meantime (ITMT) Men’s Group, Caravan Health, the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, and the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health.

As an award-winning journalist and editor, Gerald served as editor-in-chief for Chill Magazine and has been a contributor to such publications as the Advocate, Plus, and Heart and Soul magazines.

Gerald also holds a bachelor’s degree in English and a Master of Business Administration degree with a focus in organizational leadership and human resources.

CENTER MANAGEMENT GROUP

  • Artistic Director Jonathan Muñoz-Proulx
  • Director, Community Health Programs Operations Jeffrey Rodriguez
  • Director of Human Resources Trisha Yamato
  • Director of Development Frank Stasio
  • Chief Information Officer Allen Spiegler
  • Chief Medical Officer Kaiyti Duffy, MD, MPH
  • Director of Facilities Jessica Stoneham
  • Director of Legal Services Roger Coggan
  • Director of Nursing Byron Patel, RN, ACRN
  • Director of Pharmacy Services Nicole Thibeau, PharmD
  • Director of Policy and Community Building Joey Espinoza-Hernandez, MPA
  • Director of Research Risa Flynn
  • Director of Senior Services Kiera Pollock, MSW
  • Director of Youth Services Lisa Phillips, LMFT
  • General Counsel Cameron Faber
  • General Manager, Anita May Rosenstein Campus Project Stephen Burn
  • Manager of Trans Lounge & Education Empowerment Programs Gina Bigham
  • Managing Editor Megan Phelps
  • Ride Director of AIDS/LifeCycle Tracy Evans
  • Senior Director of Finance & Accounting Miguel Medel

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

  • James Alva 
  • Tess Ayers, Secretary
  • David J. Bailey
  • LuAnn Boylan
  • Tad Brown
  • Tamika L. Butler
  • Sarah Dusseault
  • Carolyn A. Dye
  • Susan Feniger, Co-Chair
  • Alfred Fraijo, Jr.
  • Jordan Held
  • Annie Imhoff
  • Marki J. Knox, M.D. 
  • Michael Lombardo 
  • Carlos Medina 
  • Lucinda Moorhead
  • Michael Mueller
  • Michael Ormonde
  • Andy Ortiz
  • Loren S. Ostrow
  • Jayzen Patria
  • Frank D. Pond, Co-chair
  • Francisco Ramos
  • Don Thomas
  • Amy Gordon Yanow, Treasurer 

Giving Tuesday $50,000 Match by US Bank

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