The Biden/Harris campaign is ramping up voter mobilization efforts across North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore (Biden) via Flickr. CC BY-SA 2.0 license)

Today, Biden for President NorthCarolina announced its has put together a LGBTQ Leadership Council, a part of the national OUT for Biden program. The Council will work to elevate the diverse voices of the LGBTQ community across the Tar Heel state. The 30-member LGBTQ Leadership Council’s primary focus will be to raise awareness in the community about the importance of voting for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in this election, to educate voters about the three easy and convenient ways to vote as well as to work on getting people registered to vote and to turn out to vote for Biden and Harris.

According to the Biden campaign, “the leaders on the council will serve as ambassadors for the campaign in their own communities — helping us share why voting for Joe Biden is so critical and identifying issues the campaign needs to speak to in order to bring more LGBTQ+ and pro-equality North Carolinians to the table. The council will help the campaign work to reach every LGBTQ+ and pro-equality voter in North Carolina by holding Out for Biden virtual events and listening sessions.”

The chair is Matt Hughes, Hillsborough Board of Commissioners and second vice chair of North Carolina Democratic Party (NCDP) and the council will be co-chaired by:

• Ginger Walker, president of North Carolina LGBTQ+ Democrats
• Deb Butler, North Carolina State representative
• Allison Dahle, North Carolina State representative
• Allison Scott, trans activist at Campaign for Southern Equality
• Candis Cox, trans activist

“The choice for LGBTQ+ North Carolinians is crystal clear: Donald Trump and Mike Pence have spent the last four years relentlessly attacking the rights and health care of LGBTQ+ Americans. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have loyally fought alongside the LGBTQ+ community for equality, and will be the empathetic and experienced leaders we need to achieve even more progress,” said Hughes. “With 36 days to go, we are turning out the vote in North Carolina and making sure every LGBTQ+ North Carolinian knows what’s at stake and how to vote in this election.”

“While Joe Biden made history as one of the first major political figures to publicly support of marriage equality, Donald Trump made history with his discriminatory ban on transgender troops and hateful attacks on the LGBTQ+ community,” said Walker. “We cannot take any of our recent progress for granted —our health care and basic civil rights are on the line in this election, especially following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. We must vote as if our lives depend on it, because they do! Joe Biden has always had our back, and the LGBTQ+ community in North Carolina will have his back in this election.”

“Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are steadfast allies of the LGBTQ+ community, and have been their entire careers,” said Butler. “Joe and Kamala celebrate North Carolina’s diverse and vibrant LGBTQ+ community and our many contributions, and we’re going to return the favor by doing everything we can to send them to the White House.”

“Black transgender women are at tremendous risk because Donald Trump has mismanaged this deadly pandemic and filled his Administration with transphobes who do not believe equality of opportunity applies to transgender Americans. This election is our chance to send a clear message: Donald Trump does not speak for North Carolina,” said Cox. “We have fought back against bigotry and discrimination in our state, and deserve leaders in the White House who will bring us together and ensure all of us — every single one of us — have a chance to live the American Dream. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are those leaders — empathetic and compassionate leaders who will always do right by the transgender community.”

LGBTQ+ Leaders Council Members

• Marcia Morey, North Carolina State representative
• Vernetta Alston, North Carolina State representative
• Lydia Lavelle, mayor of Carrboro
• Jonathan Melton, Raleigh City councilman
• Robert Kellogg, Gastonia City councilman
• Clay Eddleman, North Carolina Human Relations commissioner
• Jenna Wadsworth, Democratic candidate for NC Commissioner of Agriculture
• Jasmine Beach-Ferrera, candidate for Buncombe County Commissioner
• Arsidez Leon, vice president of North Carolina LGBTQ+ Democrats
• Katie Rodgers, Forsyth County LGBTQ+ Democrats
• Mandy Carter, LGBTQ+ Democrats of Durham County
• David Hammond, Guilford LGBTQ+ Democrats
• Noah Ambrose, UNC-Greensboro student and North Carolina Young Democrats LGBTQ+ Caucus chair
• Wendy May, president of the Veterans and Military Families Caucus, NCDP
• Timothy Warmath, self-employed Global Human Resources and Recruiting consultant
• Mark Kleinschmidt, Orange County Clerk of Court
• Candelario Saldana, lawyer for Cadwalader, Wickersham and Taft
• Roger Hayes, senior pastor at ReNewal Fellowship UCC
• Kris Rixon, HIV/AIDS activist and former North Carolina General Assembly candidate
• Lee Storrow, executive director of North Carolina AIDS Action Network
• Dawn Pugh, real estate broker for Dawn Pugh Team
• Billy Maddalon, former Charlotte City councilman
• Jessica Hulick, director of Civic Engagement and Politics
• George Greene, substitute teacher
• Ryan McGill, veteran of U.S. Navy and Marine Corps

The leadership council will meet virtually once a week to hear updates from the campaigns, and plan and discuss digital organizing and voter mobilization activities, as well as other issues.

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