Over the last few months, GetEQUAL’s Board of Directors and Staff have gone through a process of self-reflections, strategic evaluation, and connecting with leaders across intersecting movements. The goal was to identify individuals with the talent, vision, passion, and skill to lead GetEQUAL into the future of this current political moment. With the culmination of this process, the GetEQUAL family is excited to announce that Gaby Garcia-Vera has been selected to serve as Executive Director, and Aaryn Lang as our Movement Building and Campaigns Manager.
Aaryn hails from Columbus, Ohio and got her start organizing with the Transwomen of Color Collective in the spring of 2014. She has been working to build power for Black and LGBTQIA liberation, and to uplift the leadership of Black trans women ever since. Aaryn said, “I am honored and excited to add my vision to GetEQUAL's legacy of intentional action for the most marginalized bodies within our LGBTQIA movement. The road has been long, and struggle shall persist, but we will not be bought or swayed. Our goal is liberation, and I have nothing but confidence in the work our team and community partners will continue to do to combat the violence we are facing in this moment of intense political and ideological difference."
Gaby Garcia-Vera has been a part of the GetEQUAL family since 2012 and brings a wealth of experience fighting for immigrant rights, reproductive justice and Queer & Trans liberation across the state of Florida and around the country. In 2016 he cofounded the Coqui Language Collective a Florida based collective working to create language justice in Florida through interpretation and translation services. Before joining the staff of GetEQUAL Gaby served as the Field and Advocacy Manager at the Florida Latina Advocacy Network an extension of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health where he oversaw organizing LatinX communities around Reproductive Justice. Formerly he’s served as Programs and Development Coordinator at Pridelines, and served on the Trevor Project’s National Youth Advisory Council in 2013 to combat stigma surrounding mental health and suicide prevention amongst LGBTQ youth.
Vera Garcia said, “I am excited and honored to have been selected to steward the organizing and vision of this amazing organization. The road that lay before us with the current political climate is one filled with violence, hatred, and fascism but in the wake of those things I know that our community is resilient, strong, and unwavering in its commitment to liberation. My dream is that together we can create sustainable communities where we are all free to create and construct our families in the way we see fit, free of violence and policing.”
Outgoing Executive Director, Angela Peoples, said “this transition marks the beginning of an important and exciting time for GetEQUAL and our movements’ collective fight for liberation. Our community needs strong leadership that can fight the threat of fascist, racist, and political ideology while also carrying a bold, aspirational vision for liberation. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Gaby and Aaryn over the last few years and I’m confident that they will unite our movement and continue GetEQUAL’s work to build a grassroots movement toward liberation that reflects the values, experiences and needs of community.”
Gaby and Aaryn will officially join the GetEQUAL staff team at the end of September and are excited to hit the ground running. Requests for interview should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.