5 questions with Roger Poindexter
Roger Poindexter is an information security manager for EDS in Plano. He is on the national board of directors for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. He is a singing member of the Turtle Creek Chorale and a member of Cathedral of Hope. He is a former member of both organizations’ boards. He is a member of the Human Rights Campaign and Collin County Gay and Lesbian Alliance. He serves on the Victory Committee of CCGLA. He is a seven-year resident of Dallas who moved here from Virginia.
Why is it important for you to be involved in the LGBT community?
The civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s opened doors for me and provided opportunities in my life that my grandparents and parents never imagined possible. The gay community has made significant strides in our struggle for civil rights, but we still have a long way to go. Status quo is not good enough. We have to care enough to get actively involved in our community to make change happen. I want to be a part of that.
What do you see as the important struggle facing the LGBT community today?
Full equality in every aspect of our lives. There are many in the LGBT community that face discrimination daily I never realized to what extent until I joined the board of Lambda Legal and started seeing the statistics from our help desk calls.
How big of a challenge do we face in uniting all elements of our community in the cause?
I may be naive, but I think the Dallas community may be closer than you think. It simply requires someone taking the lead. For example, Lambda Legal recently hosted a breakfast meeting with Mayor Tom Leppert at the Cathedral of Hope that included representatives from 15 LGBT groups. The goal was to educate the mayor on LGBT issues and build a relationship with the mayor’s office.
How do you think we can encourage people in our community to get involved in working for change?
Through education. It saddens me that many people in our community are not aware of our history. The Stonewall Riots, the Montgomery Bus Boycott and the recent immigration rally were all sparked by individuals who saw a need for change and were tired of standing by and waiting for change to happen. We have to be willing to get involved and facilitate the process.
Do you think you will see full legal rights for LGBT people in your lifetime?
Absolutely. Sexuality is less of an issue for the current generation, and other countries are ahead of the U.S. in providing legal rights to the LGBT community. In 20 years, I hope it will be a non-issue.
Soundout is a weekly column featuring people whose jobs and interests have an impact on the daily lives of members of the LGBT community. It features those who often go unnoticed by the press and community. If you’d like to recommend someone to cover in this column, e-mail email@example.com.
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