OkEq Weekly eNews

November 21, 2022

Pictures are hyperlinked!

Board President Update

Dear friends,

The winter holiday season is a time for gratitude, and this year I am profoundly grateful for the overwhelming support we have seen from the OkEq community during this time of transition. Thank you for your messages of support and your unwavering commitment to our work on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community.

As you may know, last spring we celebrated Toby Jenkins’ 26 years of leadership as executive director of OkEq and wished him the best on his well-earned retirement to spend time with his family, especially his grandchildren. Over the last five months, the Board has been working to identify a new leader to help strengthen and sustain our mission and the legacy of Toby's work through the many events, programs, and resources that OkEq provides in serving you, our community.

On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am thrilled to announce that Dorothy Ballard has joined OkEq as our new interim executive director. After a competitive interview process, the executive committee of the Board recommended Dorothy because of her knowledge, dedication, and passion for the mission of OkEq. She brings more than 15 years of experience in communications, marketing, and project development and management. We are grateful for her willingness to step forward and lead OkEq through this time of transition.

Dorothy has hit the ground running and is building a comprehensive plan to stabilize and sustain OkEq. We will be sharing more information about those plans soon. I hope you will save the date of Thursday, December 8 at 5 pm for a Holiday Open House at OkEq for a chance to meet Dorothy and the OkEq team, tour the center, and learn about our programs and services. We also hope you join us afterwards in the Lynn Riggs theater to enjoy December’s Rainbow Room event “A Quirky Queen’s Queer Christmas Cabaret” featuring Travis Guillory at 7:30 pm.

Look for an invitation to these later this week!

Now that we again have leadership in place that holds the confidence of the Board and Staff, we can continue to address the broader work of implementing our strategy to make sure that OkEq is financially sound and can sustain its mission for generations to come. Although these shifts hold their challenges, we have an exciting opportunity for OkEq to meet the expanding needs of the community.

As we move forward, we are mindful of our founding and history as a grassroots organization created to serve all in our community. After over 40 years, the rich diversity of our community has grown and our needs - your needs - are greater than ever. Thank you for continuing to stand with us as we work through this time of change as we turn the corner toward a bigger and brighter future.


Sincerely,


Bob Hanson

Board President

OkEq Colorado Shooting Statement

Tulsa Cares Fairy Tree is back and ready for you to stop by the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center and adopt a fairy from the fairy tree this holiday season! Join us in helping some faires enjoy the magic of the holiday season. 🧚🏽❄️

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🎄Gifts list are ready for pick up Monday - Friday 9am-9pm!

🎄Dealine to return gifts is December 12th

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Tulsa CARES was founded in 1991 as a community response to the growing need for coordinated HIV/AIDS care during some of the darkest days of the epidemic. For more than three decades, Tulsa CARES has provided a compassionate response as HIV/AIDS has evolved from a fatal illness to a chronically-managed disease.

Today, Tulsa CARES is the largest and most comprehensive provider of prevention and care programs serving low-income individuals living with HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C in the state. We recognize the critical importance of addressing social determinants of health to improve community health and reduce costs. We specialize in wrap-around, client-tailored care that is rooted in principles of empowerment, self-worth, inclusion, and hope."Today, Tulsa CARES is the largest and most comprehensive provider of prevention and care programs serving low-income individuals living with HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C in the state. We recognize the critical importance of addressing social determinants of health to improve community health and reduce costs. We specialize in wrap-around, client-tailored care that is rooted in principles of empowerment, self-worth, inclusion, and hope.

Upcoming Special Events

It's Giving

Saturday, Nov 26th | 6:00pm - 9:00pm

The Canopy

19 E. Reconciliation Way


“It’s Giving,” a community solidarity potluck event sponsored by Equality Business Alliance, Studio 66, and Tulsa Remote at the Canopy followed by a drag show and dance party at the Chimera Ballroom (212 N. Main Street). The evening is meant to give back to the 2SLGBTQ+ community and strengthen ties between creative, diverse, and resilient Tulsans and those supporting them. We hope to see you there!

Facebook  Instagram  Email
RSVP

The Allie Jensen Memorial Art Gallery with Tyler Thompson

Month of November | 9:00am - 9:00pm

Dennis R. Neill Equality Center

621 E 4th St., Pride Street, Tulsa, OK 74120


Tyler was born in 1996 in Oklahoma and is a member of the Cherokee Nation. He has been drawing all his life

with his brother Brandon being the inspiration that got him into art. Throughout school, he was praised for his drawing capabilities and was commissioned to do various pieces in his high school.

In 2022, he was commissioned to do a memorial piece for missing indigenous woman Aubrey Dameron for the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Thompson had also been published in the Tribal College Journal for posters he made to raise awareness

for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. The signs were distributed through tribal colleges for them to hang around campuses. Thompson is attending Tohono O’odham Community College where he is pursuing an associate's Degree in Fine Arts. His art page, Thompson Art Design, can be found on Instagram where he draws in various mediums such as digital art, graphite pencil, charcoal, and paint.

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View Art

Thursdays in the Rainbow Room

Thursday, Dec 8th | 7:30pm

Lynn Riggs Theater

621 E 4th St., Pride Street, Tulsa, OK 74120


Travis Guillory stars as Tracy La Louisianne in A Quirky Queen's Queer Christmas Cabaret!

Get in the Christmas spirit with not-so-classic holiday songs, such as Christmas Card from a Hooker in MinneapolisAll I Want for Christmas is Nudes, and a Mad Libs version of The 12 Days of Christmas. Featuring Powell Barca, Nick Cains, Claire Sbanotto, Kara Staiger, and Jeremy Stevens, A Quirky Queen's Queer Christmas Cabaret is sure to deck your halls and jingle your bells with a fa-la-la-la-fun evening of campy Christmas chaos!

 

Doors open at 7:00 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. Table seats are $15 and general admission seating is $10. Tickets going on sale soon.

Facebook
RSVP

Name & Gender Maker Change Clinic

Wednesday, Dec 14th | 5:30pm - 7:00pm

Dennis R. Neill Equality Center

621 E 4th St., Pride Street, Tulsa, OK 74120


Oklahomans for Equality is hosting a name-change clinic. We are focusing on those who are starting the name change process as well as those who are interested in doing so in the near future. Joshua Payton will be our resource.



Josh has eight years of experience as a practicing attorney and six years in the entertainment industry working for Celebrity Attractions. My desire is to apply my legal and business experience to serve at the Equality Center. I may not immediately know the answer to a question, but I pledge to walk in solidarity with those seeking clarity until we have an answer. 

Contact Josh

Black Queer Tulsa is excited to present its inaugural Diamond Ball! Please join BQT on December 3rd for our annual fundraiser. Tickets are $75 for a fun-filled night of Black excellence. Come prepared to be dazzled with Tulsa’s premiere fashion designers and sparkle with Tulsa’s finest from the ballroom scene! There will be opportunities to support BQT programming all night, including a silent auction and raffle. Shine bright like a Diamond and support Black Queer Tulsa!

Light appetizers will be served with an open bar. 21+ to attend.


RSVP ON FACEBOOK
TICKETS

Grow With Us featuring Luke Scuitto

This episode of Grow With Us features Luke Scuitto, the Membership Coordinator at the Dennis R. Neill Oklahoma Equality Center. Luke is Tulsa-transplant who found a meaningful community at the Equality Center, and he was able to create an opportunity to serve the LGBTQIA+ community of the Tulsa Metropolitan and beyond. In this episode, we discuss Luke’s involvement in programming events for the Equality Business Alliance, different programs available to folks in the LGBTQIA+ community, and the ways to serve locally in LBGTQIA+ spaces. 


Read More

Luke Scuitto

OKEQ Membership Coordinator

Gilcrease in Your Neighborhood at The Dennis R. Neill Equality Center


While Gilcrease is rebuilding, we want to bring art from their collection to you through their new program, Gilcrease in Your Neighborhood, which begins this fall. Reproductions from their collection will pop-up in at least 30 locations around Tulsa. One artwork will be displayed for three months simultaneously all over town, with three different pieces displayed over 12 months. Gilcrease has programming based on the art planned for select locations so we’re sure to get as many people interacting with the art—and Gilcrease—as possible.


Read More

The first piece is "Forest Scene" by Pop Chalee (Taos Pueblo).

The open enrollment period for the ACA marketplace has begun! And 4 of 5 customers can find a plan option for $10 or less per month. Visit healthcare.gov to enroll, compare options, or switch plans.

More LGBTQ+ people qualify this year for affordable health insurance options! Open enrollment for 2023 health insurance has started and runs through Jan 15, 2023. Go to healthcare.gov to get started.

SUBMISSIONS

OKEQ Programming

LGBTQ Women's Network Monthly Happy Hour

First Wednesday of the month.


Meet like-minded Tulsa women and build your network


Our monthly meet-ups are come and go gatherings for Tulsa Women who identify as LGBTQ+ and Allied Women are always welcome!

The program exists to provide support, encouragement, education, and social opportunities for all Bisexual and Pansexual, Curious, & Questioning individuals. 


Brought to You Bi the Letter B meets every 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month 7:00pm.- 8:00pm


For more information email Daniel

A social organization for mature minded Gay and Bisexual men age 21+. The purpose is to establish friendship and support through social interaction.


Prime Timers meets every 2nd Tuesday of every month 7:00pm


For more information email Steven or call

918.592.0088

IndigiQueer is a space created for queer and two-spirit native/indigenous persons.


IndigiQueer aims to empower our indigenous community through cultural learning, connection and tribal involvement.


Every First Tuesday of the month.


For more information email Brian Jennings or Kao Morris

Sin Fronteras es un movimiento liderado por latinos que brinda un entorno acogedor y seguro en el cual sus miembros y aliados de la comunidad LGBTQ+ pueden prosperar en Tulsa y sus alrededores.

Sin Fronteras is a Latin-led movement that provides a welcoming and safe environment in which LGBTQ+ community members and allies can thrive in Tulsa and surrounding areas. 


Sin Fronteras meets every Third Wednesday of the month. 

The program is providing support, education and social opportunities for transgender and intersex individuals.


Groups: Trans Men, Trans Women, Non-Binary, Partners of Trans, & Gender Outreach


A first time interview is required before attending your first meeting.

Email Rowan to schedule interview

Every Wednesday from 7:00pm - 8:30pm.

For more information call 918.743.4297.

Looking for something fun to do on a Tuesday night? Wanna meet up with friends and make new ones? Do you have board games you've been eager to play? Then Equality Gaming Night is for you!


Last Tuesday of the Month 5:00pm - 9:00pm

Jamm Outt will learn about different cultures, traditional music from around the world, and get to play instruments while expanding musical knowledge.


This group meets every first and third Monday of the month at 5:30 pm at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center.


This program is for ages 13 - 17. Email Shay with Name, School, and Age.

Join PFLAG & OKEQ for our new support group for parents of LGBTQ+ teens. Coffee and cookies will be provided. 


This group meets monthly on the first Saturday from 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm at Fellowship Congregational Church

2900 S. Harvard Ave.

Tulsa, OK 74114

OKEQ Seniors is daytime programming for those who are retired or accessible during the day. The mission of OKEQ Seniors is to address issues related to aging lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons. In partnership with its constituents and allies, OKEQ Seniors works to achieve a high quality of life for LGBT older adults, supports and advocates for their rights, fosters a greater understanding of aging in all communities, and promotes positive images of LGBT life in later years.


OKEQ Seniors meets every Tuesday morning at 10:00 am at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center.

Email SAGE@OKEQ.ORG for more information.

The purpose of the group is to provide much-needed support to LGBTQ+ veterans, who are looking for safe spaces among those who share their identities.


Veterans Support Group meets every Thursday at 6:00 pm at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center.

We are a Social Group that identifies as "Bears" or part of the "Bear Culture/Subculture" that falls within the LGBT Community and is based in Tulsa, Oklahoma.


Green Country Bears meets every second Thursday of the month at 7:00pm at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center


For more information email Daniel or call 918.812.4640

Social and support group for non-traditional, complicated relationships. It's Complicated will meet Every First Thursday of the Month from 7pm - 8pm.

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Email Thomas for more information.

Nancy & Joe McDonald Rainbow Library

YOUR VOICE SUBMISSION


IT'S OFFICIALLY HERE! The Rainbow Library online catalog is live! ➡️ The Rainbow Library

Here's how you can request a library card:

Or, if you have a library card already, you can log in to the catalog to see what you have checked out and request a hold on a book. 


You can also email the librarian.


Currently, we are compiling a list of over 100 books, primarily Young Adult titles, to purchase in the next month. In addition, we sent out our first batch of library cards, with more to be mailed out soon. 


There is still a lot of work to be done. With limited time, the other library volunteers and I are doing what we can to finish sending out our backlog of library card requests, add new books, process current books (since the conversion from the old system to this one was not entirely 100% smooth), and become fluent on the new system. So bear with us as we work through these things, but most importantly, come enjoy YOUR new library.

Rainbow Library
Donate & Support

Clinic Hours:

Tuesdays - 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Wednesdays - 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Fridays - 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.


Appointments need to be made 24 hours prior to your requested appointment time. 

SCHEDULE APPOINTMENT 

OKEQ HEALTH CLINIC

We currently accept Blue Cross and Blue Shield and offer a self-pay option. At the moment, we are only able to see patients who are 18 and older. 

If you are interested in starting or transferring services, please call 918-938-6537 to set up an appointment or use the link below.



Please do not send medical or private information via email!

Equality Alliances

The EBA exists to strengthen LGBTQ+ -welcoming businesses in the Tulsa community by:

  1. Providing a directory of LGBTQ+ welcoming businesses in the Tulsa community;
  2. Creating regular networking opportunities with these businesses; and
  3. Creating professional environments where gay-welcoming businesses can meet to have their voices heard on important issues that affect how we do business and our quality of life.

The EFA exists to connect the LGBTQIA+ community with affirming faith communities. 

All participating faith communities must show a commitment to being an affirming and welcoming place for the LGBTQ+ community in their spaces and in their practices. 

The EHA strives to connect the LGBTQ+ community with friendly healthcare providers. We provide healthcare professionals with training on working with the LGBTQ+ community as well as follow-up support and education on evolving best practices. 

Community Partners

Every Tuesday from 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center.

(Free Testing)

Hope Testing

Alyssa Bryant is a Staff Attorney at Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma. Alyssa will be assisting members of the LGBTQ+ community with fair housing-related issues. If you believe you've been a victim of housing discrimination, please call her at 918-238-1650, or email her at alyssa.bryant@laok.org.


These legal services are open to everyone regardless of income and are available throughout the State of Oklahoma for LGBTQ+ persons.

Julie L. Goree with Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma is available for drop-in discussions regarding legal issues.


Julie can answer basic questions on any matter that Legal Aid covers. So divorces, paternity, child custody, protective orders, child support, guardianships, housing, expungements, Wills/Estates, and Social Security. Legal Aid does not cover criminal, personal injury, or worker's comp. However, she has some knowledge about those fields of law.  


She also will accept questions via email or phone if someone does not feel comfortable getting out or coming in. 

Do you, your partner, or your family members qualify for SNAP or Soonercare benefits? American citizens living in Oklahoma who make less than roughly $19k a year qualify for these free government services, and Tulsa Responds navigators would love to help you get enrolled and support you in the process of using those benefits. To get these services or avoid being kicked off Soonercare/SNAP, please make an appointment for assistance at www.tulsaresponds.org/healthinsurance or call 918-900-0918 ext.3 to make an appointment today.

OSU - Tulsa Counseling Services


The Oklahoma State Tulsa Counseling Center is an LGBTQ+ affirming center located in Main Hall of OSU Tulsa. You do not have to be affiliated with OSU to benefit from these services! Our center offers clients from OKEQ sessions for only 5 dollars. Each member of our counseling team receives additional training and supervision in LGBTQ+ issues and is excited to work with clients from OKEQ.


Please contact us at 918-594-8568 for more information or to schedule an appointment. 

Oklahomans for Equality and the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center are affiliates of Action Link: Center Action Network. Sign up at the link below to keep up to date with advocacy alerts across the country. 

Sign Up for Center Action Network

In Memoriam

Stan Simpson

Aug 29, 1929 - Jul 21,2022


Carol Smith

Sept 14, 1940 - Aug 22, 2022


Paul Wayne Gossett

Feb 9, 1944 - Aug 23,2022


Joseph Edward Johnson

1947 - 2022

Matt Brooks

Born Day - 2022


Daniel Davis Aston

Born Day - 2022


In Memoriam Submissions
SUPPORT TODAY

Amazon Smile. You Shop. Amazon Gives.

Get your house in order and help us get our house in order, too! Go to smile.amazon.com for your shopping needs, and Amazon will donate a portion to Oklahomans for Equality!

OKEQ STAFF, BOARD, AND TRUSTEES

Executive Committee

Bob Hanson, PharmD - President

Julie Chase - Treasurer

Eric Wilson - Secretary

Whitney Cipolla - Member at Large



Board of Directors

Dani Byrd

Angelyn L. Dale, Esq.

Elizabeth Ortiz

Crista Patrick

Justin Ross

Paula Shannon

Matthew Stroud

Ovidio Trejo

Monique Washington

Trustees

Shawna Baker, Esq.

Dan Burnstein

Kirk Holt

Cynthia Phillips

Kris Wilmes - Chair


Board of Advisors

Claire Combs

Heather Hornig

Caleb Jackson

Michael James

Karen Keith Wilkins, Esq.

Denise Reid

Jane Wiseman

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Oklahomans for Equality & The Dennis R. Neill Equality Center

Monday - Friday: 9:00 am - 9:00 pm

Saturday: Open for Events Only | Sunday: Open for Events Only

621 E. 4th St., Tulsa, OK 74120