Denise Hinds Named One of NYC’s LGBTQ+ Power Players

Denise Hinds (she/her) is the chief program officer for youth and family well-being at Good Shepherd Services. In 35 years at Good Shepherd Services, she has been instrumental in developing innovative programs. For 10 years, Denise has led the LGBTQ workgroup in creating a culture of awareness, acceptance, and celebration. Denise works to ensure Good Shepherd is a welcoming place for all within the LGBTQ community. Denise is also on the board of Family Equality, a national organization championing the rights and needs of LGBTQ people to have families. She is the board chair of the Newark LGBTQ Community Center.

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My favorite Pride month event is the DYKE March!! It’s one of the most exhilarating and uplifting events I participate in during Pride and one that energizes me as I continue on in this work. I especially love marching with other LGBTQIA+ people in an act of resistance rather than celebration as we continue to fight for the rights of LGBTQIA people everywhere. To me it’s a real demonstration of the strength and resilience of the community I love so much!!
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I am most inspired daily by the life of icon Audre Lorde. Since I first read her work in my thirties she has been a guiding force and inspiration in my life. Sharing similar backgrounds being children of Caribbean parents and growing up in NYC made it easy for me to identify with her, but the power of her words and the way she lived her life unapologetically black and queer is the main thing that inspires me. She talked about learning to be unafraid to speak her truth, which helped me to find my own voice in the world.
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Everyone has a part to play. Our community is in a fight for our lives now more than ever. There seem to be forces working to ensure that LGBTQIA+ rights are stripped away. We need everyone to help us fight against this type of erasure. We need to make sure our lives and the lives of all within our LGBTQIA spectrum matter, and we need our allies and our friends more than ever to help us do that. It’s about speaking up and speaking out when- and wherever possible, not just waving a flag or wearing a rainbow shirt.
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Businesses can make environments more inclusive by making sure that everyone feels welcome. Ensuring that everyone can see themselves in their branding is one way. From the moment you walk in the door, it can be the very subtle things that help employees and patrons know this is a welcoming and safe space. Encouraging the use of pronouns sends a very important message to everyone that the way they identify themselves matters and is respected.

Visit this link to read about the other Power Players —…/lgbtq-power-players/page/10/