Governor’s Advisory Commission on LGBTQ Affairs Announces New Members

September 18, 2023

Harrisburg, Pa – Today, the Governor’s Advisory Commission on LGBTQ Affairs announced its 29 new members. The Commission’s purpose is to gather information regarding LGBTQ Pennsylvanians’ experiences and needs; review, evaluate, and assess programs affecting them; provide the Governor with information and recommendations regarding how best to meet their needs; and provide information about programs and services that may be relevant to LGBTQ Pennsylvanians’ needs. The Commission was established by Governor Josh Shapiro through an Executive Order.

“It’s a privilege to work with this talented group of leaders to serve the LGBTQ community across Pennsylvania,” said Executive Director Henry Sias. “The Governor’s Advisory Commission on LGBTQ Affairs will both serve as a resource for the LGBTQ community and a driver of policy development under the Shapiro Administration. 

“It’s so important for kids and our community members to see that they can and do belong everywhere decisions are made. I saw that firsthand when I walked with the Governor in this year’s Pride Parade in Pittsburgh and connected with LGBTQ kids and their families – especially the trans kids and families I was privileged to meet. Together, our Commission will help ensure that all Pennsylvanians have a seat at the table and see themselves reflected in state government.”  

The Commission Chair, Vice Chair, and members are listed below. 

Marie Rivera of Allegheny County, Chair 

Katharine Dalke of Philadelphia County, Vice Chair 

Ben Allatt of Dauphin County, Commissioner 

Chris Bartlett of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Joanne Carroll of Dauphin County, Commissioner 

Michelle Dech of Berks County, Commissioner 

Jim DePoe of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Jeff Freedman of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Anjelica Hendricks of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Michele Kessler of Luzerne County, Commissioner 

Rich Lee of Philadelphia County, Commissioner

Michael Mahler of Erie County, Commissioner

Damon Myers of Lancaster County, Commissioner 

Daniel Orsino of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Freddie Purnell of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Sarah Rosso of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Raymond Smeriglio of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Nat Yap of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Matt Yarnell of Dauphin County, Commissioner 

Hannah Wenger of Dauphin County, Commissioner 

Rich Askey of York County, Commissioner 

Sean Meloy of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Kathy Cameron of Washington County, Commissioner 

Stephen Kulp of Philadelphia County, Commissioner 

Maria Montano of Allegheny County, Commissioner 

Marshall Blount of Erie County, Commissioner

Keisha McToy of Westmoreland County, Commissioner 

Ashley Coleman of Lehigh County, Commissioner 

Ricky Buttacavoli of Montgomery County, Commissioner 

MEDIA CONTACT: Henry Sias, Executive Director, hsias@pa.gov

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