Our Next Chapter

Dear COLAGE Family,

More than fifteen years ago I was introduced to COLAGE. For me, it was the first time that I had ever connected with a broader community of peers that shared my experience and identity growing up with queer family values, as a daughter of a gay father and later in life two incredible lesbian moms. Since this time, I have learned about what it means to be a COLAGEr. To be a part of a multigenerational, multicultural, multi-issued, community coming together through our shared experiences as children of LGBTQ parents. A community that not only talks about but that practices radical inclusivity, welcoming all of us to the table in a celebration of our differences, uniting us, empowering us, to be compassionate leaders. It has been an honor and privilege to both be a part of our movement as a COLAGEr and to be in a leadership role that follows decades of change makers before me who built this space and named an identity that is so unique to our collective experience as people with LGBTQ parents.

Adrian Ogle & Annie Van Avery at The LGBTQ Center of NYC, 2015
Photo by Antonio Ysursa

At Family Week this year, I marveled at what we have created together these past 26 years. We have come so far, yet our mission and values remain absolutely essential and relevant. It has been and continues to be a particularly poignant moment when our mission compels us to show up for our youth and families that need us most and joining other movement leaders in advocacy, healing, and justice. We have never siloed our work, it has always been important and a closely held value that we are a part of intersectional movements and identities and that has shaped our programs, collaborations, and partnerships, allowing COLAGE to continue to be relevant for all COLAGErs and our families. That commitment remains today.

Today, we recognize that there is a call for COLAGE to move into our next chapter. While I have served with great pleasure during these significant and transformational years, I believe that it is time for there to be a new visionary in this role. Adrian and I are writing to share that I will be stepping down from my role as Executive Director. I am choosing to make room for COLAGErs and allies who are ready for their leadership moment, and to put into practice what COLAGE has given so many of us; opportunities to develop into just leaders in our communities and beyond.

Over the past two months we have been working collectively to transition organizational leadership to our next generation of brilliant leaders, providing them with the tools and infrastructure to move us forward. Following three years of stability, growth, and remarkable leadership development we have spent 2016 completing our next 3-year strategic plan which will guide us through 2019, building the staff and board, and expanding resources to ensure that COLAGE will be here for the next generation. We are thrilled to share that Paul Perry, who brings significant leadership experience including six years on the COLAGE Board and previously in the role as Board Chair is joining us as Interim Executive Director. We are also excited to share the job announcement for the permanent Executive Director position. The Board led by Adrian Ogle and a hiring committee comprised of community members will be managing the search process over the coming months and we welcome you to share this opportunity with your networks.


Annie Van Avery & Paul Perry at the Center for Social Innovation, 2014
Photo by Rafael Soldi

I am here to support our collective work today as the Executive Director, tomorrow as a supporter, volunteer, and fierce ally of our critical mission. Forever a COLAGEr. Thank you all for the opportunity to be a part of our exemplary 26-year history.

Annie Van Avery / Executive Director

Adrian Ogle / Board Chair

Click here to view the job announcement for the Executive Director role and share with your networks.


2017-05-08T08:11:02+00:00 October 9th, 2016|