Equality Pennsylvania executive director Ted Martin was elected last weekend to the board of directors of the Equality Federation, a coalition of LGBT-rights state agencies. He will also serve on the board of the Equality Federation Institute, the organization’s outreach branch.
The election took place Aug. 11 during the group’s annual conference, held this year in Portland, Maine.
This marks the first time in five years that a Pennsylvania representative will serve on the board.
Martin took the helm of Equality PA in 2010.
He said his involvement in the board will help to raise Pennsylvania’s profile in the LGBT-rights world, which could have myriad effects.
“I want to be able to bring back ideas to Pennsylvania, make national contacts, which could help with creating new funders, making new allies,” he said. “Generally, I hope this helps publicize what we’re doing here. For so long, not many people knew what was happening in Pennsylvania and I think this’ll help put us on the map, and show people that there’s a lot of great work being done in Pennsylvania.”
Equality PA board president Adrian Shanker said Martin’s election “further highlights that Pennsylvania is a state to watch for LGBT equality.”
“Since 2010, we have played a role in many important victories and are proud that Pennsylvania is becoming a more equal place to live and work for all of us,” Shanker said. “I am proud of Ted for being elected to this role, and all of us on the board of directors share in my congratulations.”
Equality Federation is made up of 48 agencies from 40 states, which work with nearly 1.5-million people.
While his board work and his commitments at Equality PA could be tough to juggle, Martin said it’ll be a worthwhile investment.
“I have been asked to be on a number of boards and I’ve been pretty selective where I go. But this is an enormous opportunity for Pennsylvania and one that I couldn’t pass up,” he said. “This is a national board made up of some of the top leaders working for LGBT equality in the country. These are people who are fighting on the front lines, grassroots people making a difference. It would’ve been really hard to say no to this.”
Martin will serve a two-year term.