Kris is one of the Program Managers of Transgender Initiative, and this is their second year on the Planning Committee for Out! Raleigh. Their first experience with Out! Raleigh was in 2016 and it was one of the first LGBT Center events they attended. Coming from the small town of Zebulon, they were overwhelmed with the sheer number of LGBT folx and allies who flooded the streets of downtown Raleigh. Soon, the LGBT Center became a second home to Kris, and they made the move from Zebulon to Raleigh. They are passionate about social justice and wearing crop tops as often as possible, regardless of the weather. When not working, Kris can be found at an LGBT Center event, Ruby Deluxe, or Night Rider, the best dive bar in Raleigh.
Amy Cox is the Senior Vice President at Deep South Entertainment. She graduated in 1999 from North Carolina State University with a BA in Communications with a minor in Social Work. Deep South Entertainment has assisted with the planning, production, and implementation of Out! Raleigh since the inaugural festival in 2011. Having been with Deep South for 20 years, Amy has taken on multiple roles within the company. In 2005, she started taking the lead on running events and festivals for the company. When a collective of volunteers/leaders from The LGBT Center of Raleigh approached Dave Rose & Amy Cox in 2010 about doing the Out! Raleigh festival, Deep South was 100% on board and ready to support the efforts. As an ally in the community, Amy has thoroughly enjoyed producing this very inclusive festival that is for everyone. In 2016, Deep South Entertainment was honored at The LGBT Center Gala as the Organization of the Year. Upon receiving the award Amy said, “This community brings so much more to me than I to it. Thank you!”
Pronouns: She / Her
William started volunteering for the LGBT Center of Raleigh in December of 2016. This is his third year volunteering for Out! Raleigh and his first year on the Planning Committee. He’s excited for the opportunity to step up and contribute something more than consistency. Having grown up in Raleigh, William enjoys giving his time to the Center and getting in touch with the community. He works downtown as a Content Editor. He loves all things video games, likes to travel, and is looking forward to seeing you on Fayetteville Street this May.
Kori is the Office Manager at the LGBT Center of Raleigh. They came on initially as a volunteer in March of 2017 and then joined the staff in August of 2017. This will be Kori’s third year helping with Out! Raleigh. Outside of the office, Kori enjoys time with their three dogs (Pierogie, Panini, and Loki) and partner, Jordan. Kori tries to take every chance they get to see new places and try new foods. Adventuring is a priority, but watching a movie and eating an entire bowl of popcorn and melted chocolate is also nice.
John started volunteering at the LGBT Center of Raleigh in November 2015 and loves finding new ways to help out. This is his 4th year with Out! Raleigh, and he is helping with the website and logistics. He loves giving back to his community and helping to put on the festival. John moved to Raleigh in 2012, and has been a visitor to the LGBT Center of Raleigh since then. He is a graduate of East Carolina University with a Bachelors in Criminal Justice and a minor in Forensics. He enjoys web design, new technology, meeting new people and spending time with his fiancé, David.
2019 is Katie’s 4th Out! Raleigh experience, usually working with volunteer coordination. She found the Center while in graduate school, through her now wife, and found it to be instrumental in maintaining her sanity. Though now finished with school, she still enjoys the Out! Raleigh experience and looks forward to it every year. In her free time, she enjoys lounging around with her wife Emi and the cats and can occasionally be found outside at Umstead or other hiking opportunities.
Anna’s (volunteer) “gay job” is her role on the Board of Directors of LGBT Center of Raleigh. She is constantly awed by the talented, passionate staff and volunteers who breathe life into the Center. Anna also enjoys her “day job” of working with students with special needs. When not working or volunteering, Anna enjoys hiking and kayaking, or (on rainy/cold days) doing all things nerdy: playing board games, reading, doing crossword puzzles ... and, let’s be honest, playing some classic Nintendo games.
Pronouns: She/Her or They/Them
Jim was one of those people who helped Carson Farley and a mob of others hold down the Center’s tent in 2011's Out! Raleigh during the violent wind storm that blew through that day. He had just met the Center’s first Executive Director and had been recruited to help out with the Center’s website the evening before Out! Raleigh 2011. Jim has lead the Center’s Web Team ever since. In 2012, the Center decided to ignore all the other extremely dedicated volunteers who do so much to keep the Center running every day (to whom Jim is eternally grateful) and awarded him the Volunteer of the Year 2012 recognition. Jim runs a website development business that serves dozens of community businesses and organizations. As expected, he makes sure the Out! Raleigh Website is up to date.
Colin is retired from a very large company that starts with “I,” has three letters, and ends with “M.” He worked there for 40 years. In retirement, Colin decided that he would rather give back than take, so he now volunteers at the LGBT Center of Raleigh, as well as the Raleigh Rescue Mission. Colin has been very happily married to Ada for nearly 39 years. He has one son Grant, who is 30. In his spare time, Colin is a fitness fanatic, spending many hours each week training. He also enjoys reading, family life and finding new and nice beers. This year will be his fifth as an Out! Raleigh volunteer. He’s truly enjoyed the previous ones.
Lara is the Community Outreach Coordinator for The LGBT Center of Raleigh and Out! Raleigh’s vendor coordinator. This will be Lara’s second year with Out! Raleigh. Before working with the LGBT Center, Lara was active in Raleigh’s vibrant activism scene and enjoys bringing that energy to the Center on a daily basis. As a Raleigh native, Lara’s enjoyed watching the city she calls home become a diverse and welcoming hub in the southeast while still holding onto its smaller town charm. When she’s not at the Center or one of the many museums downtown, Lara enjoys hiking, reading, spending time with her dogs, gardening, and cooking with her partner. Oh, and don’t bring up bad movies in front of her unless you want to be stuck in an hour-long conversation about the importance of BMX Bandits in Australian action/sports movies and their role in launching Nicole Kidman’s career.
Carmen joined the LGBT Center of Raleigh in February of 2017. She was looking for an opportunity to give back to the community. She found that the LGBT Center was a fulfilling volunteer position and that the guests, volunteers, and staff were all supportive and welcoming. This will be Carmen’s third year volunteering with Out! Raleigh. Her last year was spent as a lead volunteer, this will be her first year on the planning committee. Carmen is a student at the University of North Carolina and is majoring in political science. After she completes her BA, she hopes to receive her master’s degree in Human Resources. In her free time, she likes to hike or camp with her dog.
Three years ago, Ellen Raby was bitten by a radioactive girl and her life has never been the same since. When she’s not helping run Trans Initiative, Youth Drop In, and TpartE at the Center, you can find her punching a pinball machine. You’ve got to trust her when she tells you that the machine has definitely done something awful to deserve it. Ellen is one of those rare figures who seems to have been born and raised in Raleigh but implores that you don’t hold it against her. When she’s not at her day job teaching, you can find Ellen hanging out at Night Rider and caring too much about the ethical ramifications of horror movies.
Kelly Taylor, LGBT Center of Raleigh Assistant Director
Kelly is the Assistant Director at the LGBT Center of Raleigh. 2019 will mark Kelly’s 6th year at the Center helping to bring lots of wonderful and energetic Volunteers for Out! Raleigh. During the last six years, she has been able to enrich communications through pounding out a grant or two, helping the wonderful Center staff members, working with some great interns, and bringing her own flare to the Center. Kelly is originally from the western part of North Carolina. In her spare time, she can be found busting out a show tune, haunting local theaters to find a good play, and even perhaps behind the scenes banging out a great costume or ten.
We love you James!
Smokin’ Cardinal Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence
Out! Raleigh wouldn’t be complete without the Smokin’ Cardinal Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. They have been present at every Out! Raleigh festival, and this year, we welcome them as honorary members of our Planning Committee.
The Sisters are part of a world-wide order of 21st Century, queer Nuns. Their mission: To promulgate universal joy and expiate stigmatic guilt.
“As Sisters, we have devoted ourselves to community service, ministry, and outreach to those on the edges, to promoting human rights, respect for diversity and spiritual enlightenment for all humankind, to raising awareness, providing education and encouraging prevention of all sexually transmitted infections and to the total eradication of stigma and bullying.”
The Smokin’ Cardinal Sisters serve communities in the Mid-state area: Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Greensboro, High Point, Winston Salem, and surrounding communities.