Richard is a native of New Paltz and, after time away for college and early career opportunities, he returned and has lived in the Hudson Valley for the past 24 years; he knows how special our area is and understands the dynamics of local communities quite well.
Richard currently serves as President of the Elting Memorial Library in New Paltz and is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Child Welfare League of America in Washington, D.C.
Richard began his professional career in the not-for-profit world and with a commitment to social justice in positions at GMHC and the New York City LGBT Center – both during the throes of the AIDS crisis. After a stint as a director at the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, Richard was the Founding Executive Director of the William Way LGBT Community Center in Philadelphia: he led the development and execution of its first strategic plan, created and implemented new programs, and oversaw the renovation of The Community Center’s 26,000 square foot building in center city Philadelphia. Since that time, most of Richard’s work has focused on child welfare – including a series of senior positions, court-appointed and otherwise, advocating for children across New York State and Ulster County.
As Richard shared with us, “My commitment to racial, ethnic, and social equity stems from lived experience in the child welfare system, my queer identity, and my life as a transracial adoptive parent. And nothing challenges and excites me more than opportunities to support advocacy, build community, and resolve complex issues: I believe I can be successful in all of these areas at the LGBTQ+ Community Center.”
Please refer to The Community Center’s website for a more detailed look at Richard’s profile, experiences, and qualifications to lead The Community Center for all.