CARRBORO, N.C. — Lydia Lavelle, the openly lesbian mayor of Carrboro, has been appointed to the N.C. Commission on Inclusion, adding yet another LGBT voice to the new statewide board created by Gov. Roy Cooper last year.

Lavelle will join several other high-profile LGBT leaders on the commission, including Charlotte City Councilmember LaWana Mayfield, Greensboro attorney Andrew Spainhour and Wilmington transgender advocate Paula Kohut.

The commission, established by Cooper through an executive order in October 2017, is charged with identifying areas where the state can craft new or improved policies and practices ensuring inclusion. The commission’s primary focus is discrimination in state employment, government services and contracts.

The commission was created after the fallout from the anti-transgender HB2 and its repeal. Cooper specifically cited the experiences of transgender workers in the executive order creating the new commission and added both sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of prohibited types of discrimination.

The commission also aims to share best practices and will hope to provide resources to private businesses and organizations seeking to improve their own inclusion efforts.

“I’m really hopeful that we set some policies that other agencies and groups will want to follow,” Lavelle told The Daily Tar Heel.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.