GO NYC Magazine Names Astraea Development Director Wendy Sealey in “100 Women We Love”

While pursuing a teaching career and doctorate at Stanford, Sealey had a moment. Though she had studied at several prestigious East Coast schools, Sealey abruptly left academia realizing her skills and talents were best suited for non-profits.

Click here to read this article on gomag.com.

100 Women We Love
by Melody Wells, editor

Wendy Sealey
While pursuing a teaching career and doctorate at Stanford, Sealey had a moment. Though she had studied at several prestigious East Coast schools, Sealey abruptly left academia realizing her skills and talents were best suited for non-profits. The 37-year-old Staten Island-raised Harlem resident became the lifeblood of the Harlem Textile Works. When it lost funding, she set inner-city kids on a path to success as Director of Professional Advancement Opportunities at Prep for Prep. Now, as Director of Development for The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, she’’s expanding their donor base so more grants can be made. For Astraea’s 30th anniversary, Sealey will continue “cultivating the under-30 crowd” for its donor pool, ensuring a crop of young professionals to lead Astraea to its 60th year. She’s proud that Astraea “is often one of the first funders for many of our grantee organizations. We’re making a difference in people’s lives.” –MW

Celebrate Pride with Astraea Staff

For thirty years, the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice has funded organizations that challenge oppression and support human rights around the world. Astraea Staff invite you to join them in celebrating another year of funding change and strengthening communities.


Staff House Party Organizers Shaheen Nazerali, Development Associate and Miles Goff, Executive Assistant

Celebrate Pride in Brooklyn

Missed the Party or want to relive it? View photo gallery.

For thirty years, the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice has funded organizations that challenge oppression and support human rights around the world.

Astraea Staff invite you to join them in celebrating another year of funding change and strengthening communities.

ANNUAL PRIDE CELEBRATION
Thursday, June 14th, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Home of Executive Director Katherine Acey
Brooklyn, NY
RSVP for Directions

Good eats, Good drinks, Good music, Good folks!
Suggested Contribution: $50 (more if you can, less if you can’t)

RSVP Shaheen Nazerali
(212) 529-8021 x14
snazerali@astraeafoundation.org

Astraea Partners with NewFest to Present Outlaw: Fora da Lei

Astraea Partners with NewFest to Present Outlaw: Fora da Lei

Outlaw
Fora da Lei
Portugal, 2006, 84 min, Video
In Italian with English subtitles
US Premiere

Directed By: Leonor Areal

Lesbian couple Teresa and Lena made national news in Portugal when they applied to get married. Leonor Areal’s camera follows them, one amid scores of reporters’ cameras, as they deal with the denial of their petition, and, more significantly, with the negative fallout the publicity generates. Though seeking equal rights, in the process of being recognizable public figures, the two women and their daughters instead find themselves facing even greater discrimination in housing, work, and school.

Sunday, June 3rd, 3:45pm
Purchase Tickets

Nepal’s Blue Diamond Society Conversation & Celebration

An Evening of Conversation & Celebration with Sunil Pant, Blue Diamond Society

Nepal’s Blue Diamond Society Conversation & Celebration

Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, with Adhikaar, The Audre Lorde Project, CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities, Desis Rising Up & Moving, International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission, South Asian LGBT Association, and others invite you to join us for:

An Evening of Conversation & Celebration with Sunil Pant, Blue Diamond Society

Sunil Pant, founder & president of Blue Diamond Society, who is being awarded with this year’s Felipa de Souza Award by the International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), will be joining us in this rare visit to NYC. Please join us to learn more about the work of Blue Diamond Society and raise funds to support their work in Nepal. Visit www.bds.org.np for more information about
Blue Diamond Society.

DATE: May 10th, 2007
TIME: 6:30pm – 8:30pm
LOCATION: Astraea, 116 East 16th Street,
7th Floor, NYC

Suggested contribution: $20 – $100 for individuals (more if you can, less if you can’t – no one will be turned away). 100% of funds raised will be given to Blue Diamond Society.

To RSVP and/or pledge a contribution or for information about how to have your organization cosponsor the event or for questions about the event, please contact Lorraine at 212-529-8021 ext. 22 or email: lramirez@astraeafoundation.org.

Tax deductible contributions via check may be made payable to: Astraea Foundation (please indicate “5/10 BDS Fundraiser” in the memo line). Contributions can be brought to the event, or mailed to: Astraea, 116 E. 16th St., 7th flr, Att: 5/10 BDS Fundraiser, NY, NY 10003

NYC & SF—South Asians Here and There: A Dialogue about LGBT & Human Rights

South Asians Here and There: A Dialogue about LGBT & Human Rights

Astraea is proud to co-sponsor the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission’s (IGLHRC) panel discussions on the LGBT rights situation in South Asia. The panels, in New York and San Francisco, will feature Astraea Grantee Partner Sunil Pant, the founder and director of Blue Diamond Society, Nepal’s only LGBT rights organization and the recipient of IGLHRC’s 2007 Felipa de Souza Award.

NEW YORK: Monday, April 30, 2007

6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
LGBT Community Center (208 West 13th Street)

Panelists
Sunil Pant, Founder and President of Blue Diamond Society
Trishala Deb, Program Coordinator at Audre Lorde Project
Paula Ettelbrick, IGLHRC Executive Director, Moderator

SAN FRANCISCO: Wednesday, May 2, 2007

6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Asian and Pacific Islander Wellness Center (730 Polk Street)
Admission is free.

Panelists
Sunil Pant, President of Blue Diamond Society
Dechen Tsering, Program Officer, Asia and Oceania,
Global Fund for Women
Sandip Roy, New America Media, former editor
Trikone Magazine
Paula Ettelbrick, IGLHRC Executive Director, Moderator

Human Rights Forum Features Joo-Hyun Kang

Why Can’t America Have Human Rights: A Public Forum to strengthen connections andbuild a human rights movement in the United States

Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice

is proud to be a co-sponsor of

Why Can’t America Have Human Rights:

A Public Forum to strengthen connections and
build a human rights movement in the United States

Thursday September 14, 2006 6:30PM
The Nave at The Riverside Church
490 Riverside Drive, New York

Presented by Breakthrough and Mission and Social Justice of the Riverside Church, the event will feature social justice leaders, performers, comedians and musicians including the following:

Reverend Dr. James A. Forbes Jr.
La Bruja
DJ Spooky
Nasry Malak
Roger Bonair—Agard
Blackout Arts Collective
Afsheen Shamsi—CAIR NY
Mallika Dutt—Breakthrough
Larry Cox—Amnesty International USA
Aarti Shahani—Families for Freedom
Mary Beth Maxwell—American Rights at Work
Kent Lebstock—American Indian Law Alliance
Joo-Hyun Kang—Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice
Silvia Henriquez—National Latina Institute for
Reproductive Health
Ajamu Baraka—The United States Human Rights Network
The Riverside Inspirational Choir

For more information, visit: www.breakthrough.tv

Astraea Pride Celebration!

Sharing our passion and pride in the movement for social, racial and economic justice for lesbian and allied communities around the world.

The Staff of

Astraea Lesbian Foundation For Justice

Invites You To
Our Annual Benefit Garden Party

Astraea Pride Celebration!

Sharing our passion and pride in the movement for social, racial and economic justice for lesbian and allied communities around the world.

•

Thursday, June 29, 2006
6:00pm – 9:00pm Rain or Shine

At the lovely home of Katherine Acey,
Astraea’s Executive Director

Food and refreshments provided.

Suggested contribution: $50
(more if you can, less if you can’t)

Please RSVP to Candace,
Astraea’s event coordinator at 212.529.8021 x14.

GO Magazine Names Astraea Communications Director Jennifer Einhorn and Board Member Stephanie Blackwood in their 2006 Women We Love

“There are lesbians living in the homophobic Bible Belt who, thanks to the Appalachian Women’s Alliance, have found support and renewed self worth. There are lesbians who’ve been denied formal education in Namibia who, thanks to the Rainbow Project’s job training program, have learned new skills and found employment. Because, together, there is so much more we can do.”

Click here to view the article on gomag.com.

Astraea’s Pride Celebration in Brooklyn, June 29!

Sharing our passion and pride in the movement for social, racial and economic justice for lesbian and allied communities around the world.

Left to Right: Lorraine Ramirez, Dulce Reyes, Melissa Hoskins, Candace Hewitt, Katherine Acey, Shaya Mercer, Audrey Rivers, Kerry-Ann Dacres, Colleen Meyers, Jazmine Irizarry, Joo-Hyun Kang, & Namita Chad.

Not Shown: Jennifer Einhorn, Ivory Farley, Fred Humphrey,
& Wendy Sealey


The Staff of

Astraea Lesbian Foundation For Justice

Invites You To
Our Annual Benefit Garden Party

Astraea Pride Celebration!

Sharing our passion and pride in the movement for social, racial and economic justice for lesbian and allied communities around the world.

•

Thursday, June 29, 2006
6:00pm – 9:00pm Rain or Shine

At the lovely home of Katherine Acey,
Astraea’s Executive Director

Food and refreshments provided.

Suggested contribution: $50
(more if you can, less if you can’t)

Please RSVP to Candace,
Astraea’s event coordinator at 212.529.8021 x14.

Open Letter in the Advocate

In an “open letter” to The Advocate and to LGBT people everywhere, more than four dozen prominent activists of color take issue with Jasmyne Cannick’s commentary calling for LGBT equality to take priority over rights for illegal immigrants. Quoting Audre Lorde, they remind us, “There is no hierarchy of oppression.”

We 55 respectfully disagree

By 55 LGBT activists

An Open Letter to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community:

We are a group of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people of color who work in the LGBT movement. We are writing to you in response to Jasmyne Cannick’s article “Gays First, Then Illegals,” in which she, a black lesbian, argues that she cannot support the current battle for immigrant rights because LGBT people have not yet won the right to marry. We are writing to express our profound disagreement with her and to offer alternative LGBT perspectives to the current immigration battles happening across the country.

To begin with, Cannick fails to realize an obvious fact that the LGBT community and the immigrant community are not mutually exclusive. There are thousands of LGBT immigrants in this country. There are thousands of black immigrants. And there are thousands of black LGBT immigrants. To put forward an argument that says “we should get ours first” makes us question who exactly is the “we” in that analysis. In addition, we recognize the historically interconnected nature of the immigrant and LGBT struggles–such as the ban on “homosexual immigrants” that extended into the 1990s and the present HIV ban, which disproportionately impacts LGBT people–and we believe that only by understanding these connections and building coalitions can we ensure real social change for all.

And we ask those who share the destructive views of this article to remember the immortal words of Audre Lorde when she said that “there is no hierarchy of oppression.” We reject any attempts to pit the struggle of multiple communities against each other and firmly believe that rights are not in limited supply. We condemn the “scarcity of rights” perspective espoused by Cannick and other members of the LGBT movement and are surprised to see members of our community trafficking in such ugliness. But then one reason why it has always been so hard to shift power in this country is because the ruling class has successfully made us believe that there are only a few deserving groups to whom rights can be given. This strategy has always been used to divide oppressed groups from coming together to work in coalition.

We are painfully aware that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities still lack many basic protections under the law in this country, including the right to care for and support all of our families in the various ways in which we construct family and kinship. Nevertheless, supporting immigrant rights, while we continue to work for LGBT liberation, does nothing to hurt our cause. In fact, we believe the opposite to be true and want to work towards building powerful coalitions between immigrant and LGBT movements to work together for social justice.

We are also aware that many immigrant rights advocates have (intentionally or not) used antiblack rhetoric to move their agenda forward. Arguments such as “Don’t treat us like criminal” or “We are doing work that other Americans won’t do” have the effect of positioning immigrant narratives as subtly juxtaposed with American stereotypes of nonimmigrant black communities. They leave native-born black Americans as among the only people who do not have access to the immigrant narrative and so are in a permanent position of subordination, as the state consistently negotiates and redefines citizenship and “American-ness” for almost everyone but blacks.

Nevertheless, the solution to this problem is not to abandon support for the struggle of immigrant communities. Rather, we call on immigrant movements and (nonimmigrant) black organizations to work together for real racial and economic justice in this country. Together these movements can work to end the exploitation and targeting of both communities and to ensure that black folks and immigrants do not end up having to choose between competing for low-paying jobs, or being targeted for detainment or imprisonment.

As lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people of color, we support the current immigrant rights marches and rallies happening across the country this month, and we march too.

We march because immigrants are among the most politically vulnerable, underpaid, and exploited communities in the country and are asking for basic human rights, including the right to live free from torture and exploitation, and the right to work.

We march because we recognize the connections between the state attacks on immigrant and LGBT communities, and that LGBT immigrants in particular are disproportionately affected by much anti-immigrant legislation.

We march because we oppose the heightened policing and criminalization of immigrant communities, including the increased militarization of the border, as mandated by HR 4437 and Senate bills.

We march because we oppose indefinite and mandatory detention of noncitizens–as well as the mass incarceration of people-of-color communities in the U.S. more broadly–and envision a society that ensures the safety and self-determination of all people, regardless of national origin, race, class, gender, or sexuality.

We march because we oppose the guest worker proposals, which would continue the exploitation of many low-wage workers. We march because we demand the repeal of the HIV ban.

We march because our sexualities have been historically criminalized by this country, and we understand that law and justice are not the same thing.

It is our understanding that Jasmyne Cannick was writing as an individual and not as a representative of either the National Black Justice Coalition (on whose board of directors she serves) or the Stonewall Democrats (for whose Black Caucus she serves as cochair). As LGBT people of color, we call upon both of those organizations to publicly clarify their own positions in this ongoing civil rights discussion.

We also call upon our community to imagine how much more progress we could make if we all stopped thinking of social justice as a zero-sum game.

Sincerely,
[signed as individuals; titles and affiliations provided for identification purposes only]

Katherine Acey
Executive Director, Astraea Lesbian Action Fund

Faisal Alam
Founder & Former Director, Al-Fatiha Foundation for LGBTIQ Muslims

Samiya Bashir
Board member, National Black Justice Coalition
Communications Director, Freedom to Marry
Board member, Fire & Ink

Noemi Calonje
Immigration Project Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR)

Noran J. Camp
Office Administrator, Freedom to Marry

Chris Chen
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, immigrant from Taiwan in 1997

Cristy Chung and Lancy Woo
Lead plaintiffs in the Woo v. Lockyer marriage rights case

Alain Dang
Policy Analyst, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Debanuj Dasgupta
Board of Directors, Queer Immigrant Rights Project

Carlos Ulises Decena, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey

Joseph N. DeFilippis
Executive Director, Queers for Economic Justice

Marta Donayre
Cofounder, Love Sees No Borders

Andres Duque
Coordinator, Mano A Mano

Monroe France
Educational Training Manager, Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network
Board of Directors, Queers for Economic Justice

Glen Francis
Associate Executive Director, GRIOT Circle

Eddie Gutierrez
Representative for Christine Chavez, granddaughter of labor and civil rights leader Cesar Chavez

Priscilla A. Hale, LMSW
Executive Director, ALLGO

Teresa Haynes
Creating Change Associate, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Lorenzo Herrera y Lozano
Director of Arts and Community Building, ALLGO

Kemi Ilesanmi

Joo-Hyun Kang
Director of Programs, Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice
Former Executive Director, Audre Lorde Project

Surina Khan
Interim Vice President of Programs, The Women’s Foundation of California
Former Executive Director, International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission

Jane Kim
President, San Francisco People’s Organization

ManChui Leung
HIV Program Director, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum

Lee Che Leong
Director of Teen Health Initiative, New York Civil Liberties Union

Yoseñio Vicente Lewis
Board member, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Latino and transgender social justice activist, first-generation U.S. Citizen

Elizabeth Lorde-Rollins
Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center
Board of Directors, Queers for Economic Justice

Glenn Magpantay
Steering committee member, Gay Asian & Pacific Islander Men of New York

Rickke Mananzala
Campaign Coordinator, FIERCE!

Andy Marra
President of the Board, National Center for Transgender Equality

Gloria Nieto
National Latino Justice Coalition

Doyin Ola
Welfare Organizer, Queers for Economic Justice

Jesús Ortega-Weffe
Director of Community Organizing, ALLGO

Emiko Otsubo
Former board member, Queers for Economic Justice

Clarence Patton
Executive Director, NYC Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project

Donna Payne
Senior Diversity Organizer, Human Rights Campaign

Earl L. Plante
Development Director, National Minority AIDS Council
President-Elect, Board of Directors, National Black Justice Coalition

Achebe Powell
Betty Powell Associates

Lorraine Ramirez
Public Policy Committee, Queers for Economic Justice

Lisbeth Meléndez Rivera
Convener, the National Latino Coalition for Justice

Ignacio Gilberto Rivera
Founder, Poly Patao Productions
Board of Directors, Queers for Economic Justice

Elias Rojas
e-Philanthropy and Community Campaigns Manager, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Russell D. Roybal
Director of Movement Building, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Rebecca Sawyer
Chair for Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer & Questioning Issues, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, DC-Chapter

Shay Sellars
Major Gifts and Events Administrator, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Pedro Julio Serrano
Communications Associate, Freedom to Marry
President, Puerto Rico Para Tod@s

Regina Shavers
Executive Director, GRIOT Circle

Nicholas Shigeru Sakurai
Program Coordinator, GLBTA Resource Center at American University

Sarah Sohn
New Voices Legal Fellow, Immigration Equality
Board of Directors, Queers for Economic Justice

Mónica Taher
Directora de Medios de Comunicación, Alianza Gay y Lésbica Contra la Difamación (GLAAD)

Lisa Thomas-Adeyemo
Cocoordinator, National People of Color Organizing Institute, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Director of Counseling, San Francisco Women Against Rape

Carmen Vazquez
Deputy Executive Director, Empire State Pride Agenda

Robert Vazquez-Pacheco
Former Program Manager, Funders for Gay and Lesbian Issues

Lisa Weiner-Mahfuz
Capacity Building Project Director, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

Andy Shie Kee Wong
Coalition Manager, Asian Equality

Miriam Yeung
Director of Public Policy and Government Relations, the LGBT Community Center