The Bayard Rustin Center for Social Justice, a community activist center, educational bridge, & dedicated safe-space welcomed Michelle Elizabeth Brown to its Board of Directors this week.
Straight outta’ greater Detroit, Michelle is a Public Speaker, Author, Activist, Poet, & Lecturer at universities/colleges, LGBTQIA Pride celebrations, community gatherings, & social & racial justice forums internationally & served as Executive Director for Michigan Equality as they transitioned to becoming a larger organization with greater outreach. She is a regular columnist for Between The Lines (Michigan’s only queer newspaper), creator of the beloved series of children’s books, “Jack with the Curly Tail”, & on the other end of the spectrum, “Wild Fruit Hidden in Open Spaces – Musings in Prose & Poetry” & “3 Layers & A Brassiere” & hosts the legendary “Collections by Michelle Brown – Blog Radio” recognizing & celebrating the lives of those standing boldly in the crosshairs of their intersectionality & creating change as they move through life.
As Michelle espouses, “Especially during this pandemic our friends & found families have helped hold us together as a community, I am pleased & honored to say I have been officially “adopted” by my Bayard Rustin Center for Social Justice family & joined the Board of Directors. From day one the mission & vision of the Center along with the commitment & passion of its Chief Activist Robt Seda-Schreiber have been in sync with my core beliefs touching my spirit. I look forward to working with this group of “Angelic Troublemakers” as we build community & create change.”
The announcement of this auspicious addition to the BRCSJ Board of Directors was made during the Center’s popular virtual broadcast, the “Social Justice Power Hour” which has aired on their Facebook page every weeknight from 7-8pm EST since the pandemic began, over 450 shows in all featuring guest stars including Valerie Jarrett, Patton Oswalt, Keisha Blain, Gavin Grimm, Ibram X. Kendi, Wayne Brady, Billy Porter, Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, Robert Jones Jr., Billy Eichner, Kiese Laymon, Shannon Watts, Cecilia Muñoz, & Adam Gopnik among many other inspiring community leaders, activists, authors, & entertainers across the spectrum. Michelle further shared her pride in joining the BRCSJ Board on her own incredibly popular “Collections by Michelle Brown – Blog Radio.” She joins an already incredibly diverse Board dedicated to the mission of the BRCSJ: giving voice & power to those who are marginalized, forgotten, bullied or otherwise underserved by the present systems in place. Although the Center lost its physical space in this difficult time, it continues to serve the community on a local & national level by offering focused programming, diverse events, outreach & advocacy- concentrated on civics, community activism, & cultural instruction & appreciation aligned with the Center’s vision to educate, enlighten & empower. These offerings are predominantly virtual at the moment, but the Center hopes to open its doors once more in early 2022 to once again provide a welcoming safe-space for LGBTQIA+ youth & diverse families as well as offer in-person counseling, resources, & enriching events & programs. Other members of this august Board include Dr. Peniel Joseph, Black power scholar, author, & Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Race & Democracy at the University of Texas at Austin; Emilio Delgado, “LUIS” on Sesame Street & longtime Chicano Rights Activist; Coalition for Peace Action’s Rev. Bob Moore; transgender crusader Erin Worrell; Clarion River Group founder & union organizer David Sailer; Maplewood, NJ Deputy Mayor & first openly gay elected in that community Dean Dafis; activist street theatre performer Glen Pannell (aka “Mike Hot-Pence”); BRCSJ Community Outreach Coordinator & queer education pioneer Carol Watchler; Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tom Haydon; Center for Medicare Advocacy Senior Attorney Wey-Wey Kwok; & Ex Officio Member, Chief Activist Robt Seda-Schreiber.
“Michelle is an extraordinary addition to our Board of Directors at the Bayard Rustin Center for Social Justice. She has truly been with us since our very beginning & we are glad to finally put a ring on it! Her belief in our mission & support of our greater community is just a continuation of the care & love she’s shown through her career & her personal activism & we are proud to be on this inspirational journey with her.” shared BRCSJ Chief Activist Robt Seda-Schreiber.
To learn more about the Bayard Rustin Center for Social Justice, please visit their website, https://www.rustincenter.org.