University selects leader for LGBT Resource Center

The University hired a short-term leader for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Center, filling the center’s 4-month-long void in leadership.

Timothy Kane, formerly the director of the Office of Community Service, will step into the role of interim associate director for inclusion initiatives, the University announced March 21, relieving the pressure put on administrators by students lobbying to fill the position at the center.

Kane will lead the LGBT Resource Center at GW – and continue to serve as an adviser on community service issues – until a permanent director is hired.

As an openly gay member of the GW community for nearly 20 years, Kane said he will bring a wealth of experience on LGBT issues to his new position.

“I was?excited and honored when approached by Dean of Students Peter Konwerski to work in support of the GW LGBT community,” Kane said. “I hope to help build community within the LGBT community and between LGBT-identified?students, staff and faculty and our campus allies.”?

Konwerski said the decision to hire Kane was a simple one.

“It was not necessarily a choice to choose Kane for the position but an offer,” Konwerski said. “Even though his initial foray into this position is for an interim period, I think it also allows us to bring a fresh eye to the position at an elevated level.”

Students have been asking for the spot to be filled since the most recent full-time coordinator left in November, which marked the second time the resource center had been without a leader. It took GW five months to replace the original director in 2009.

Kane will serve as director of the center until a permanent coordinator is hired – a feat the University hopes to achieve shortly after University President Steven Knapp’s year-old Council on Diversity and Inclusion presents a status report on diversity at GW by the end of this year.

Konwerski said Kane’s tenure as director will allow Student and Academic Support Services to assess what the LGBT center needs – a process already underway on a broader scale within the council.

“I think what will come out in the next few months are some further recommendations of what will support this area,” Konwerski said.

Michael Komo, president of Allied in Pride, said he’s relieved the staffing gap was filled.

“I’m very enthusiastic with the interim appointment that we can now move forward, we can now continue our progress and I think it continues the momentum we’ve built up,” Komo said.

Komo met with Kane to discuss future plans for the center and the executive board of Allied in Pride will meet with Kane and the resource center staff in the near future to express its concerns.

“I think Kane is trying to learn a lot,” Komo said, “He is reaching out to [the LGBT community] to hear what we want.”

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