Luke Blankenship: St Pete Pride Executive Director

By : Scion Crowder
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Scion Crowder

Luke Blankenship started college wanting to work in LGBTQ advocacy, and shortly after found himself running the largest Pride organization in the state of Florida: St Pete Pride.

Luke was named executive director (ED) in May, making him the youngest ED of a Pride organization in the country. He joined St Pete Pride five years ago as a general volunteer and since then worked as logistics coordinator, parade director, development director and now ED. He oversees the day-to-day operations in collaboration with the board of directors and oversees sponsorships, financial strategy, event planning, magazine production, the social media presence and maintains local government and city relations. Luke is constantly working towards becoming a better person and ED. He may be young but he is continuing to educate himself by attending leadership seminars and is currently in the process of becoming a certified nonprofit ED.His passion for bettering the community is seen in various ways. He is an avid volunteer in the LGBTQ community and can be found volunteering for organizations like GLSEN Tampa Bay, PFLAG Tampa, PRIDE Alliance at USF and the Diversity Chamber. In his downtime, he can be found hanging out along Central Ave. in St. Pete or cheering on a local sports team. He never misses an opportunity to network, socialize or talk about Pride. His advocacy efforts are not limited to the local area, however—he actively participates as a member of Interpride, which allows him the opportunity to work with and impact communities and prides around the world.

One of St Pete Pride’s annual goals is to bring people together in the spirit of love and of being comfortable in one’s own skin. Luke’s empathetic views and passion for advocacy aligns perfectly with what Pride’s mission is all about. With a positive attitude and an open mind, he makes it a priority to foster an inclusive environment that encourages all walks of life to embrace the LGBTQ community.

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