A Web Portal For Lesbians Of Color

Brenda Crawford
Executive Director PRTA

Brenda has over twenty-five years of executive administrative experience in community based nonprofit organization. She has worked in a wide variety of human services organization such as the Berkeley YWCA, West Oakland Health Center Substance Abuse Treatment Services and the Contra County Sexual Assault & Child Sexual Abuse Treatment Center. In her more than twenty-five years of executive experience she has managed large complex budgets, supervised a staff of fifty. She has had the ability to develop a team spirit and goal oriented directions with all the staff in the agencies, which she has worked, She is a skilled negotiator and consensus builder at all organizational levels. For the last nine years she has own an operated Crawford & Associates a Management Consultant Firm that specializes in nonprofit management issues. She works with approximately fifty agencies per year. Brenda has a recognized and proven body of work both locally as well as nationally.

Brenda has an extensive volunteer history she has served as a volunteer with the following agencies and groups:

Brenda has an equally extensive political history.  She has worked with:


Women In The Life

We asked several Sheroes (prominent black lesbian activists) the following question:

"It’s the year 2000! What do you see as the most important issue facing the black lgbt community in the new century? And if possible, how would you address this issue?"

As you might expect the responses we received were perceptive and thought-provoking. We hope the answers will begin a dialogue that addresses these concerns and ultimately, serves as a catalyst for change!


Thank you for allowing me to participate in this most important issue.

There are several critical issues facing the black lgbt community in the year 2000. The continuing alarming rise of AIDS/HIV among black gay and bisexual men. The increase of the incidence of breast cancer among black lesbians. So our overall state of health is problematic. We need to continue to work to insure that we receive adequate funding to support services that are designed to address these issues. I believe that a national study needs to be conducted on health issues affecting black lesbians. Such a study has never occurred to my knowledge, so it is difficult to determine how many of us are impacted by breast & cervical cancer. I am interested in convening a group of black lesbian health care providers and other interested parties nationally to approach The Center for Disease Control or the National Office of Minority Health to commission such a study.

Another issue that I think we as a community will have to deal with in the new millennium is one of developing political clout and visibility. We need to become much more visible and vocal in both the national and local political arena. We need more openly LGBT black people to run for public office. Get appointed to boards and commissions. “Step Up and Step Out,” Be Loud Proud and Black, as we go into the new era. Demand to be at the table when the national agenda is set for the black community. We need no longer to let our old established organizations like the NAACP, Urban League or the National Council of Negro Women ignore us. Let us approach them out of a place of love but also determination, and let them know that we are in the churches, the schools, and everywhere. We are a vibrant and vital part of the black community, and we want to be included in all discussion regarding the communities that we live in.

Finally, I think that we need to concentrate on developing a national spiritual base for our movement. Let’s involve our church leaders in all public policy discussions that impact the quality of our lives. It is my experience that all activities that are spiritually centered have a much better chance of being successful. I am tired of the religious right misdefining who I am. I think we know who we are as a community, and what our values and beliefs are. To let people who preach intolerance and dissent voices be louder than those of us who preach love and inclusion seems out of balance. I think it is our national responsibility to uplift and support the voices that realize the universe loves and supports us all, that we are all special and unique and have gifts to share.

-- Brenda Crawford