Welcoming transformational growth.
Investing in?all of our communities.
As we entered the new year, COLAGE was embarking on a national search for our National Program Director. We had our budget in place, an extension hiring process, and a goal to continue on the path with a leadership structure that had been created years before.
Then we took an amazing turn.
COLAGE was fortunate to have not one, but multiple exceptional candidates apply for our National Director position. Seizing a moment of opportunity to invest in what would be best for all of our communities, those we serve, and those we would now be able to provide services to, we decided to make an immediate course change and to double our program capacity. We have done this by hiring two new program leaders who reflect in their lived and professional experience, the values that COLAGE has held for 25 years. We were able to make this commitment to grow our programs believing that with exceptional practices that truly impact lives, families, youth empowerment and lived equality?the resources will follow.
Please help us welcome, Key Jackson and Kaley Fry who will join Annie Van Avery, our Executive Director as the COLAGE national staff leadership team.
Key Jackson / Director of National Programs
Key is a 1st nations/Black Queer radical dreamer who is committed to weaving the strength of their community into sustainable social change. ?A Founding member of Black Youth Project 100 New Orleans, Key has spent the past 13 years fighting for Queer, Youth, Educational, Housing, Immigrant and Racial Justice. Key?s lived experience as a low income, Queer person of color has fueled their desire to educate and move always towards a more equitable reality. Key has co-founded multiple youth centered initiatives and has provided formal as well as informal trainings to hundreds of youth, organizations and communities across the nation as the National Campaign Organizer for GSA Network and Educational Justice Program Manager at GSAFE. Key resides in New Orleans with their wife two children and three dogs.
Kaley Fry / Associate Director of Youth and Family Programs
Kaley?is a fierce southern genderqueer organizer who has been involved with COLAGE for the past four years as Family Week volunteer staff and 2015 Board Fellow. Raised in North Carolina,?Kaley?was brought to America by two loving moms when they were 6 months old from Lima, Peru.?Kaley?has a large amount of pride for their family and has been organizing in their local communities since 2009 with an emphasis on youth empowerment, social, and racial justice.?Kaley?graduated summa cum laude with a degree in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and completed a Non Profit Management certificate program at Duke University. They consider COLAGE a second family and aim to build more networks and connections within COLAGE and LGBTQ communities to promote and develop resilient youth leaders.?Kaley?and their black lab currently live in Asheville, North Carolina.
As the children of LGBTQ parents, we are the authorities?of our own experiences.
We do not need to ?represent? the voices of youth in LGBTQ families, we empower and co-lead with youth in LGBTQ families so that we can BE the voice of youth in LGBTQ families.
We recognize the vast diversity of our communities and take pride in our intersectional identities.
We teach, show, and learn together skills to be just leaders in our communities and the world.
We celebrate our unique families and build life long affinity networks with those who share our experiences.
We build community together with respect for each other, honoring our differences, with a shared passion to create equity and lived equality for all people.