T. Anne Hawkins and Brian R. Jara have been selected as co-chairs of the West Virginia University Commission for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Equity.

The commission is committed to fostering diversity and an inclusive culture at WVU in which all Mountaineers are visible, safe, supported and have equitable access to all University programs, services and policies, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Working in collaboration with the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion the commission has, over the last six months, worked as an ad hoc group on various initiatives including a proposal for an LGBTQ center, enhancements to Safe Zone and a Speakers’ Bureau of LGBTQ panelists who deliver programs to classes and other interested groups.

Jara is senior lecturer in the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies. He has coordinated the center’s proposal for the new undergraduate minor in LGBTQ Studies and will regularly teach its required introductory and queer theories courses. He also currently is the faculty adviser for Spectrum, WVU’s student LGBTQ organization. Prior to arriving at WVU in 2011 he was at Penn State University, where he was involved in the university’s LGBT Mentoring Program and was recognized with the LGBT Curricular Integration Award.

Hawkins is the clinical director at the Carruth Center for Psychological and Psychiatric Services. At the center, she provides clinical services and consults regularly with faculty, staff and students regarding mental health concerns as well as LGBTQ issues. She has a long history of LGBTQ activism in the university and West Virginia, and for many years coordinated Safe Zone, advised WVU’s LGBTQ student group and was a founding member of the Council on Sexual Orientation. For these efforts she was awarded the Neil Bucklew award for Social Justice and the Council on Sexual Orientation Advocacy Award.



CONTACT: Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

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