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Pride Spotlight: Wyoming Equality

Wyoming Equality strives to achieve equity for all lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, two-spirit, and queer Wyomingites by building broad and inclusive communities, shifting the hearts and minds of our neighbors, and achieving policy victories. Ahead of Pride month, we spoke to Daniel Galbreath, director of communications of the statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization.

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Why did you decide to work at Wyoming Equality?

Wyoming Equality plays a vital role in helping Wyoming communities become more diverse and vibrant, and which can thrive now and into the future. I wanted to be a part of that!

How did Wyoming Equality get started?

The story of Wyoming Equality (WE) began in 1987 when a group of LGBTQ Wyomingites in Cheyenne and Laramie planned an annual camping trip called Rendezvous. They sought to create a space where they could be authentic, welcomed, and enjoy the outdoors in their home state. Since then, WE has grown into an advocacy organization, with focus areas in healthcare access, safe and healthy schools, and advocacy.

How does being a part of Wyoming Equality make you feel? 

Even when the work is overwhelming and it feels like an uphill race, I get a great sense of positive power from the amazing voices I’m amplifying on staff and across the state. 

What are some of the challenges Wyoming Equality overcame or are working to overcome? 

We are working to encourage a better understanding of LGBTQ issues, especially of transgender folks, among leaders, lawmakers, and everyday Wyomingites.

What challenges do you feel are unique to LGBTQIA+ nonprofits? 

Much of the work we do, and the community we support, we can’t talk about. This is because we need to keep our community safe. This says a great deal about the character and tone of anti-LGBTQ activity right now.

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What do you like the most about the nonprofit community you’re a part of? 

Wyoming nonprofits are run, and staffed, by some of the most incredible, passionate, and smart people I’ve ever met. The network of Wyoming nonprofits is a powerful force for good in our state.

How do you engage with the community?

The LGBTQ and ally community engage with Wyoming Equality in so many different ways. Some are donors or volunteers, and others are individuals who need our support. Every single one of them is valuable in making Wyoming communities into the kinds of places we all are proud and happy to call home.

What are Wyoming Equality’s proudest moments? 

We have a remarkable and unique record of working with a wide range of partners, including responsible legislators on both sides of the aisle, to achieve policy victories at the state level.

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What are the next big plans for Wyoming Equality? 

We are growing! We have recently added three new staff members (myself included), and this means we’re expanding our capacity across the state in our key program areas.

What advice would you give to other nonprofits just starting out? 

I would say two things are absolutely non-negotiable and neglected by way too many nonprofits. First, learn about good board functionality. Too many people join boards for the wrong reasons, and don’t know how to collaborate, cooperate, and serve the mission of the organization. The single best resource on this that I’ve found is The Board Members Guide: Making a Difference on Your Board and in Your Community by Richard Adams. 

Second, learn how to fundraise, and start doing it now. This, again, goes back to boards: their first responsibility is ensuring the financial success and sustainability of the nonprofit, and they must get involved in that from the outset. No ifs, ands, or buts!

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Explore the small business guide to Pride

Find the tools and resources you need to be a strong ally to your customers and employees, support the LGBTQ+ community, and make an impact year-round.

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