The Waiting Game

As Dyer departs, the community speculates about his successor at Office of GLBT Affairs

by Yusef Najafi
Published on December 23, 2010, 3:30am | Comments

Leaving his spot as director of the Mayor's Office of GLBT Affairs at the end of 2010, as was expected with Mayor Adrian Fenty's departure, Christopher Dyer is proud of several advancements in D.C.

They include marriage equality, D.C.'s first transitional home for LGBT homeless youth, and Frank Kameny Way, dedicated to the pioneer activist.

''I want to keep working in the movement and help LGBT residents,'' Dyer says, ''either locally or nationally. If that doesn't work out, I will go back to doing association management.''

Local gay activist Lane Hudson, one of Mayor-elect Vince Gray's earliest supporters, lauded Dyer's tenure in the Office of GLBT Affairs.

''I think Chris Dyer did an excellent job, especially with a mayor who refused to engage with the community. I think Chris used his time in there in very creative ways to do a lot for the community.''

Hudson says the new leader should be the ''eyes and ears'' to Gray regarding the local LGBT community.

''What I hope to see different with the new head of the Office of GLBT Affairs is to have someone who makes sure that the mayor is kept abreast of what's going on in the community, that this person has a real seat at the table in the mayor's cabinet and that this person represents our community throughout all of the agencies in the city, to make sure that any specific needs that our community has from the city government are addressed.''

Some names, from a variety of sources, have been pointed to as possible successors to head the office under Gray. They include Sterling Washington; Nick McCoy; Christopher Fitzgerald; and Jeffrey Richardson, president of the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club.

While Richardson would not offer comment about being approached for the position, he says he would be ''honored.''

''Anybody would be honored to serve our city and serve our community at such a high post, to have the potential to have such major impact on policy and government that affects our community and the community broadly,'' he says.

Local gay activist Peter Rosenstein complimented both Richardson and Fitzgerald.

''Jeff [Richardson] has been very active in the LGBT community for many years. As president of the Stein Club, involvement with numerous different organizations, he knows the people in the city, he's got a great personality, he's able to deal with everybody and I think he would make a great liaison to the mayor as head of that office,'' Rosenstein says.

''I also think Chris [Fitzgerald] would be really good. Chris has shown that he's a really hard worker, that he knows the people, knows the community.''

Gray has not yet announced when he'll be naming a head to the Office of GLBT Affairs. Doxie McCoy, director of communications for Gray's Transition team, did not return calls by Metro Weekly deadline.