Support Memorial Services for Zoe Spears

Transgender advocate and activist Earline Budd has set up gofundme page on behalf of Zoe Spear’s family, to raise money for the memorial service and celebration of life for Zoe Spears.   Please consider donating to give Zoe a funeral that signifies “Dignity in Death”.

Earline states “My heart hurts in having to do yet another service, but my life is dedicated to giving and caring and for this reason I will complete yet one more service.  Thank you in advance.”

Earline will be responsible for final arrangements. The donations are needed now.   Please give as you can today, no donation is too small. You can donate here.


Letter from Rainbow Caucus of LGBTQ Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners

The Rainbow Caucus of LGBTQ Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners submitted a letter on June 19 the Chairman Phil Mendelson. You can read the text of the letter copied below, or view the entire letter in its original format at the following link: RainbowCaucusLetter.pdf


The Honorable Phil Mendelson
Chairman, Council of the District of Columbia
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 504
Washington, DC 20004

Via E-mail

19 June 2019

Dear Chairman Mendelson:
We write as DC’s highest-ranking LGBTQ elected officials charged with ensuring the best interest of the District of Columbia as a whole. While the DC Council contains many self-
professed LGBTQ allies, we have not had true representation on the Council since Councilmembers Catania and Graham left office. The Council’s silence on hate crimes and
transgender violence, its refusal to provide even $1 in increased funding for the Office of
Human Rights and Office of LGBTQ Affairs that 15 organizations advocated for, its failure
to address anti-LGBTQ discrimination and violence, and its lack of action to ensure that we
have safe and respectful housing and job opportunities for LGBTQ people of all ages – and
in particular trans women of color – deeply concerns and disgusts us.

We learned long ago that Silence = Death … and your silence and inaction is killing
members of our community or placing them in harm’s ways and hospital emergency rooms. We will not be complacent, we will not be silent, and we will hold every single
Councilmember accountable for their failures – both now and during election time.

LGBTQ people are suffering when they walk down the street, they are targets, and they are
dying from preventable causes. Recent instances include the brutal murders of Ashanti
Carmon and Zoe Spears – both transgender woman of color, the violent attack on Carl
Craven and Braden Brech outside of Nellie’s on U Street, NW, on June 16th, and three
people stabbed inside the Fireplace on P Street, NW, also on June 16th. Sadly, violence like
this is all too common in our community, and it is happening on your watch.

Furthermore, the Council continues to fail in its oversight role. There is institutional
disrespect and homophobia/transphobia throughout our District government agencies,
particularly toward transgender people. Yet you do nothing. Your silence condones this

Words of friendship and support no longer ring true. Both as elected officials and your
constituents, we call on you to act now. Money talks, and we need to hear a mighty roar
from the Council by securing a minimum of $5M in funding for the programs and agencies
that support our community and make us safe.

We look forward to your response and are committed to rolling up our sleeves to work
together until every last one of us can walk down the street in safety and dignity.

Kent C. Boese
Commissioner, 1A08
Chair, ANC1A

Michael Wray
Commissioner, 1A09

Jason Clock
Commissioner, 1A12

James Turner
Commissioner, 1B09

Robb Hudson
Commissioner, 1B11

Ted Guthrie
Commissioner, 1C03

Birdget Pooley
Commissioner, 1C02

Japer Bowles
Commissioner, 1C07

Matthew Sampson
Commissioner, 2B01

Randy Downs
Commissioner, 2B05

Mike Silvertein
Commissioner, 2B06

Michael. D Shankle
Commissioner, 2C01

John Fanning
Commissioner, 2F04
Chair, ANC2F

Monika Nameth
Commissioner, 3F06

Madeleine Stirling
Commissioner-elect, 2F05

Councilmember Robert White’s Statement on Violence Against the LGBTQ Community

Councilmember Robert White has released a Statement on Violence Against the LGBTQ Community. You may read the statement, copied below, which was originally released on June 21, 2019.

The recent spate of attacks against LGBTQ members of our community is part of a pattern of violence in our city and around the country, and it has to stop. We cannot and will not tolerate hate crimes such as these in the District of Columbia. No one should endure the terror of being targeted and attacked for being who they are. I want my LGBTQ neighbors to know that I see you, I hear you, I support you, and I am deeply troubled and disturbed by these attacks.

On March 30, I was saddened to hear of Ashanti Carmon’s still unsolved murder. And on June 13, I was stunned to hear that her friend, Zoe Spears, was also shot and killed just blocks away. I know the DC transgender community is reeling from these losses. Yet, even at the LGBTQ community center Casa Ruby, where they should feel safest, transgender women were recently threatened by a man with a gun.

In 2019, ten transgender women have been violently killed in the United States; all were African-American. Fatal violence against transgender women of color is a national issue and having two of these horrific deaths in our own backyard is an outrage. Transgender women experience clear anti-transgender bias, and their transgender status often puts them at risk in other ways. They experience discrimination in the workplace, when they look for housing, and even when trying to access government services. This sometimes forces them into unemployment, homelessness, or survival sex work, all of which puts them at greater risk of violence.

LGBTQ individuals continue to face discrimination and harassment in public spaces both in DC and across the country. Just a few days ago, Karl Craven and Braden Brecht were attacked on U Street by men using a homophobic slur. DC is, and should always be, a welcoming community. It is our responsibility to address and denounce all hate crimes.

We have not done enough to protect and support LGBTQ residents in the District. I plan to work with the Mayor, my colleagues on the Council of the District of Columbia, government agencies, and LGBTQ organizations and individuals to address LGBTQ access to basic needs and services such as safe housing and mental health. I will work with the rest of the Council to release a statement of no tolerance for violence against transwomen and sex workers. I also will introduce legislation to create a platform for transwomen of color to shape the policies and programs that they believe they need to improve both health and safety. And I will work with the Council to hold a roundtable with government agencies and community organizations that work with transgender women to discuss how we as a city can better serve them.

I am sending letters to Mayor Muriel Bowser and to Chairman Phil Mendelson to ask for their support and assistance in addressing these issues. We can do better to protect marginalized communities. I ask the Mayor, the Council, and the District as a whole to join me as I learn about the issues and fears LGBTQ members of our community face and to take action to improve their safety and overall well-being.

# # #


WETA Arts: Arty Queers Interview

Tune into WETA TV 26 at 8:30PM on Friday, June 21st to see an interview with our very own Kimberley Bush! The interview is part of a half-hour production showcasing LGBTQ visual and performing arts in the Greater Washington area. Kimberley will be discussing Arty Queers, a monthly art market featuring original works for sale by local LGBTQ artists. Arty Queers is held at The DC Center on the second Saturday of each month.

Job Opportunity: Legislative Aide

The Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus seeks a hardworking, initiative-taking, and detail-oriented Legislative Aide in the D.C. office. The ideal candidate will work both collaboratively and individually, possess excellent written and oral communication skills, have the ability to produce high-quality work in a fast-paced environment under tight deadlines, and have an excellent understanding of Hill operations and LGBT policy. The candidate will possess a can-do attitude and be a self-starter. This is not an entry-level position. Legislative and policy experience required.


The LGBT Equality Caucus is an Equal Opportunity Employer: Women, minorities, and LGBTQ+ individuals are strongly encouraged to apply. The office is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national origin, disability, military status, age, marital status, or parental status.


Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following. Other duties may be assigned.


  • Assist the Executive Director and Co-Chairs of the LGBT Equality Caucus with developing and supporting the Caucus’s legislative agenda and membership.
  • Manage substantive policy portfolio, track LGBT legislative priorities, and conduct policy research and analysis.
  • Collaborate, develop relationships, and regularly meet with external advocates and stakeholders to build support for Caucus priorities and increase Caucus influence.
  • Draft communications products including social media posts and press releases. Provide Caucus Member offices with communications materials and resources including social media templates, graphics, and talking points.
  • Regularly meet and communicate with Caucus Member offices to develop ideas for new legislation, develop buy-in on Caucus priorities, consult on legislative text, and update them on LGBT happenings.
  • Help coordinate, plan, and execute Caucus events including briefings, press conferences, receptions, panels, Member meetings, and roundtables.


Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Deadline to apply is June 21. Interested candidates should send a resume, cover letter and writing sample to Please put LEGISLATIVE AIDE APPLICATION in the subject line. Phone calls and drop-ins not accepted.

Meet The Staff: Sean

Welcome Sean to the DC Center! He is a front desk volunteer. He looks forward to helping with the day to day workings of the center and providing assistance to all that come. You can meet Sean at the DC Center on Tuesdays! He has a Psychology degree from High Point University, North Carolina many years ago.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

May 4th, Taurus

Where are you originally from?

Born and Raised here in DC

Why did you start working at the DC Center?

I wanted to help and support my community, in a city I love and was raised in.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

Just meeting different people throughout our varied community and seeing them grow and strive.

What is your music anthem?

Janelle Monae “Lettin Go” it is about quitting a job that doesn’t appreciate you, and living your best fun life.

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

The coming together of the participants whether it be groups, clubs, and get togethers and spreading support and love.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

My grandma’s house in NW. She has lived there forever and she has always had faith in me and has been my hub in DC.

What is your favorite queer movie?

Paris Is Burning, Cause. You. Own. Everything! 

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?

Pitch Black

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

My mother the baddest most inspirational lesbian I know. Who always wanted me to be the best me I can be.

Meet the Staff: Alexis

Welcome, Alexis to the DC Center! She is a Social Media and Advocacy Intern for the Summer and is looking forward to meeting and supporting members of her community. You can meet Alexis at the DC Center on Tuesdays thru Fridays. She is a rising Junior at American University majoring in Justice and Law who likes to play Ultimate Frisbee in her spare time.


Birthdate, Astro Sign

April 21st, Taurus


Where are you originally from?

San Diego, CA


When did you start working at the DC Center?

June 5th


What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

I love how passionate everyone is about their work and helping the community. You can feel the excitement for the events the minute you walk into the room!


What is your music anthem?

“Is There Life Out There” by Reba McEntire


What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

I love it when the community comes together to show support for one another. There is so much love in this community, and it never ceases to make you feel welcomed.


What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

I love going to the National Cathedral and walking around the gardens. If it’s too cold, I’ll be in Open City sipping on some Hot Coco! But on a beautiful day, I can be caught reading a book or throwing a frisbee with some friends on the lawn outside the Cathedral.


What is your favorite queer movie?  

Imagine Me & You (2005)


What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

A teal blue – like the ocean!

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
Cleve Jones was the first activist I learned about, and his work with the Names Quilt brings me chills every time I think about it. I genuinely look up to his passion for the cause and hope I can emulate his passion in my own work.