Lafayette Pride Network hosted its first event, a tailgate on the patio of Gilbert’s Café, at Homecoming. Alumni, members of Quest, the student organization for the exploration of gender and sexuality issues, and friends of the Lafayette LGBTQ community gathered in the autumn sunshine.
The new affinity group was formed to unite alumni with a common interest, says Stephen Parahus ’84, senior consulting actuary at Towers Watson in New York City, who helped launch LPN.
“Our goal is to create a platform for LGBT Lafayette alumni and their allies to discuss LGBT issues pertinent to the College and help advance the spirit of diversity and inclusion,” says Lia Parifax ’08, attorney, managing director of global initiatives at Out Leadership, and co-founder of Athlete Ally. “We want to help Lafayette shine as one of the most inclusive, courageous, and progressive colleges in the country and understand LGBT pride and allyship as central to that goal.”
Harlan Levinson ’83 has experienced firsthand the professional and personal empowerment of such a group from his involvement with the long-standing LGBT group at Merrill Lynch in New York City, where he is vice president and financial adviser.
“Once we have a core group of alumni, all things are possible,” says Levinson, who envisions LPN members connecting with and mentoring LGBT students. “It also will also be beneficial for reconnecting alumni to the College.”
Parifax and Jiselle Peralta ’13 are planning an LPN reception in New York City this spring. Alumni who are interested in learning more about the LPN group are invited to contact Amy Frantz at firstname.lastname@example.org or (610) 330-5040.