ORLANDO | Jennifer Foster, who served as board chair for the One Orlando Alliance since formation, was named the organization’s founding executive director Oct. 11.
Foster’s appointment as the Alliance’s director comes on National Coming Out Day and during Orlando’s Pride Week — a weeklong celebration led by Alliance member Come Out With Pride.
“Jennifer has been leading the efforts of One Orlando Alliance on a volunteer basis since the very start,” said Jeff Prystajko, board president of Come Out With Pride, in a statement. “She is a proven and trusted leader in our community with a vision to elevate and strengthen the Alliance’s coalition members. This is a big win for Central Florida and another success for our community to celebrate during Pride Week.”
Foster will now head the nonprofit group made up of more than 30 LGBTQ and allied Central Florida organizations. Foster was one of the original co-conveners of the Alliance formed in the days following the Pulse tragedy in 2016.
“Jennifer’s commitment to One Orlando Alliance is deeply rooted. Her principles reflect what all of us at the Alliance believe, that when we work collaboratively, and openly respect one another, we can accomplish anything we put our energy towards,” said board member Sherri Absher. Absher headed up the search for the Alliance’s first executive director.
This week, the Alliance also released its first annual report identifying the top 10 issues affecting LGBTQ safety, equality and well-being in Central Florida. The “Alliance Agenda” calls on “governmental officials, business leaders, philanthropists and nonprofit leaders to join the Alliance in addressing key issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community including youth homelessness, workplace discrimination, hate crimes against transgender persons and persons of color, health care disparities and more,” the Alliance’s statement reads.
“Many of our LGBTQ+ service organizations have been working on these issues for decades,” said Foster. “It’s time that we address them together. The Agenda provides a clear pathway for engagement and a measuring stick of equality.”
For more information on the One Orlando Alliance and for a list of participating members, visit OneOrlandoAlliance.org.