First Black transgender woman appointed to lead the LGBTQ+ organization

September 2, Los Angeles, CA – Christopher Street West (CSW), the 501(c)3 nonprofit that produces the annual LA Pride Parade and Festival, proudly announces its newest executive appointment, current board member Sharon-Franklin Brown to President of the organization. Her role will take effect on September 2. 

Previously a member of the board, Sharon-Franklin will now steer the direction of CSW and forthcoming planned community activities and civic engagement alongside its recently formed executive committee. Together they will be meeting on a weekly basis to execute the organization’s diversity initiatives and planned community engagement.

“It’s never been a more important moment for the LGBTQ+ community and its allies to continue fighting for all of us,” said new Board President Sharon-Franklin Brown. “As a robust community across Los Angeles, we value inclusiveness and diversity. I’m so humbled to have been appointed by the board to this position as the first Black trans woman to lead CSW/Los Angeles Pride and our community efforts forward, beyond the pandemic and election, and into the future.”  

Sharon is a national spokesperson on transgender rights. She is currently also the Chief Human Resources Officer at the Los Angeles LGBT Center, where she is responsible for managing a staff of 800 employees across organizational development, strategic planning, recruitment/hiring, administration, and organized labor relations.

Outgoing President, Estevan Montemayor, said: “Sharon Brown is an exceptional leader and I could not be more proud to pass the baton to her. I have no doubt she will lead with inclusiveness and passion for our entire LGBTQ+ community.”  

“I have known and worked with Sharon for more than eight years of my career at the Los Angeles LGBT Center and Christopher Street West,” said CSW Executive Director, Madonna Cacciatore. “She has never failed to inspire me and those around her through her intentional leadership, unwavering dedication, and her openness and honesty. She is the right person to walk our community into the next chapter of our history. I look forward to her flair, vision and leadership.” 

About Christopher Street West (CSW) & LA Pride

Christopher Street West (CSW), a 501(c)3 nonprofit, organized the world’s first permitted parade advocating for gay rights on June 28, 1970 as a response to, and in commemoration of, the Stonewall Rebellion on Christopher Street in New York City the year prior. Since then, we have built a rich history as an active voice for the LGBTQ+ community across the Greater Los Angeles area. Today, we continue to produce the globally-recognized LA Pride Parade and Festival every June. We also organize a number of events throughout the year with our nonprofit, philanthropic, community, and corporate partners. 

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