Friday, April 29, 2011

Founder of Equality Ohio named interim head of EQMD

On Thursday, the Board of Equality Maryland announced they had chosen an interim Executive Director in the wake of the fired of Morgan Menese-Sheets. That chose is Lynne Bowman, recently with the Equality Federation and founder of Equality Ohio. Charles Butler, board chair, said in a statement:
“Ms. Bowman will step in to lead Equality Maryland on an interim basis following the departure of Morgan Meneses-Sheets, who has stepped down as executive director,”
Ms Bowman offered this;
“I absolutely have no desire to make it a permanent thing. I think it benefits the organization to have an interim come in that doesn't have an interest in becoming the full-time executive director.”
“My role at Equality Maryland will be to help stabilize and to move things forward and to prepare the organization for their new executive director,” she added.
Equality Maryland recently suffered two legislative defeats with their Civil Marriage and Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination (GIADA)bills. The Same Sex Marriage bill won passage in the more conservative Maryland Senate, yet faltered in what was to be a victory lap in the House. Consequently, GIADA, opposed by some members of the transgender community, gained release from committee and a favorable vote in the House, only to get stalled in the Senate. While EQMD denied involvement with the drafting of GIADA, its complete support, in light of the lack of public accommodations protections, was criticized by those seeking a full bill.

Throughout the legislative session, EQMD's Facebook page was the subject of great controversy over the deletion of comments from supporters of a full GIADA and even supporters of same sex marriage, including former EQMD board member and past interim ED David Toth.

Ms Bowman has a considerable challenge in cleaning up the image and reputation of EQMD. Unless these measures include a shakeup on the board, expect a Spackle and paint job.

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