MILWAUKEE, WI — (05-25-22) — The Milwaukee LGBT Community Center made history for itself when it named the first Black gay man to lead the center. The board of directors of the Milwaukee LGBT Center named Kevin Turner-Espinoza to lead the center.

Turner-Espinoza identifies as a cis-gender man, Black, Mexican and gay American. Kudos to the Milwaukee LGBT Center Board for continuing their tradition of providing leadership roles to a diverse range of the city’s population. Now, it’s broken a new barrier by naming its first Black gay American to lead the popular center for the LGBT Community of Milwaukee.

Turner-Espinoza is well known in the community for his nonprofit work. In fact he recently worked at the south side’s Journey House Community Center, where they provides resources and services, including education and financial coaching for both old and young.

Not only has he served on several community boards on the south side, he was also advocated for the renaming of 16th Street to Cesar Chavez Drive and for the creation of the Chavez’s bronze memorial on the street.

The Milwaukee LGBT Community Center provides resources and services to the community in the same way as the Journey House, but it mainly seeks to “further develop our vibrant lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community in the greater Milwaukee area,” according to its official mission statement.

Marco Briceno, the LGBT center’s board chair, said that Turner-Espinoza is qualified, trusted and passionate about the Center’s mission.

“He has a bold, progressive vision that is matched by a wealth of experience that will ensure the Center is here to provide programming and protections for queer people beyond another 25 years,” Briceno said.

Turner-Espinoza joins a “small number” of LGBTQ-identifying people of color who lead queer-driven organizations.

“My queer siblings, chosen friends, family and allies in this city mean the world to me. What a euphoric moment and opportunity to serve my community and the Center in a new capacity. As the executive director — and as a gay Black man — I directly see the ​ issues of race, gender, economic and health inequality we face every day,” said Turner-Espinoza said in today’s press release.

Article by: Paul Goldberg, Staff Writer

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