The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation announced today that President Neil Giuliano is resigning to pursue personal interests. Giuliano, the former mayor of Tempe, Ariz., has been president of GLAAD since 2005. Read the full press release after the jump.
GLAAD ANNOUNCES RESIGNATION OF PRESIDENT NEIL G. GIULIANO
Los Angeles, Wednesday, January 28, 2009 â€“Â Neil Giuliano, the president of the GayÂ & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), today announced hisÂ resignation to pursue personal interests while completing his forthcoming bookÂ about his public and political life. Giuliano has served as president since September 1, 2005 and will continue as president until a date to be announcedÂ later this year. Prior to GLAAD, heÂ served for ten years as the mayor of Tempe, Arizona and had retired from aÂ 25-year career as a university administrator and faculty associate at Arizona State University.
“I have informed theÂ national board of directors of my decision to step down as president later thisÂ year and look forward to a successful and smooth transition of leadership forÂ GLAAD,” said Giuliano. “It’s been an honor and privilege to work professionallyÂ in the movement for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality forÂ the last three and a half years. TheÂ views of the American people on LGBT issues are clearly moving in the rightÂ direction, toward supporting full equality, and it has been a great experienceÂ to serve on the front lines, leading an amazing organization at such aÂ historical time in the movement.”
Under Giuliano’sÂ leadership, GLAAD’s budget has grown from $7.5M to $11M, with expandedÂ individual, corporate and foundation support for its media advocacy andÂ anti-defamation work on behalf of the LGBT community. Giuliano expanded GLAAD’s influence as aÂ national voice against the defamation gay people often face and began mediaÂ programs reaching out to young adults, communities of religion and faith, andÂ the vast sports media world while increasing GLAAD’s outreach and mediaÂ relations support to local, regional, statewide and other LGBT advocacyÂ organizations. GLAAD also acquired Queer Lounge at the Sundance Film FestivalÂ in 2007 and will launch an advertising media program later in 2009 with theÂ assets of the former Commercial Closet Association. Giuliano’s tenure is alsoÂ marked by his focus on creating capacity and long-term sustainability forÂ GLAAD. Under his direction, GLAAD successfully completed the their 2003Â strategic plan and in Fall 2008 announced a new five year plan to build onÂ awareness, support, volunteers, programs and results for the maturing organizationÂ as a way to meet the growing expectation of its constituents and the greaterÂ LGBT movement.
“These programmaticÂ areas are where GLAAD needs to be to further influence the culture and theÂ change hearts and minds of people with regard to full equality for gay andÂ transgender people” said Giuliano. “The growth and expansion of GLAAD’sÂ influence is due to the many stakeholders who support our work, especiallyÂ those serving on the National Board of Directors.”
Yvette Burton, theÂ Co-Chair of the GLAAD National Board of Directors said, “Neil has been a strongÂ leader for GLAAD and has advanced the organization significantly in the lastÂ three years. He will leave GLAAD a better and more effective organization thanÂ when he arrived and we appreciate his years of dedication and service.”Â Added Co-Chair Laurie Perper, “The board of directors will begin conversations about this important leadership transitionÂ period, and the search process for a new president, at our upcoming boardÂ meeting February 6-8 in Los Angeles. This is a signature role in the movementÂ for LGBT equality and we are sure there will be great interest in thisÂ opportunity.”
TheÂ Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) is dedicated to promotingÂ and ensuring fair, accurate and inclusive representation of people and eventsÂ in the media as a means of eliminating homophobia and discrimination based onÂ gender identity and sexual orientation. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org.