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GLAAD, Barrios, Wrestle with President's Resignation

Over the weekend, several bloggers and journalists received an email from GLAAD Communications Director Rich Ferraro that President Jarrett Barrios had resigned. The email included the promise of a statement that would be forthcoming soon from the organization.

Barrios That statement has not materialized, raising further questions about behind-the-scenes activity at GLAAD.

Politico reported last night that the Board was meeting to discuss Barrios' resignation last night:

"GLAAD’s board of directors will discuss by telephone on Sunday night whether to formally accept Barrios’s resignation...GLAAD and Barrios did not respond to requests for comment regarding his offer of resignation....Influential members of the gay community say they believe Barrios’s resignation is a positive for GLAAD, but that the organization may need to further clean house and revisit its advocacy for causes unrelated to gay rights."

Meanwhile, others were calling for the resignation of Board member Troup Coronado:

Coronado,[is] a former AT&T official and lobbyist. Coronado’s bio on GLAAD’s website said that from 2008 to 2010 Coronado worked as AT&T’s vice president for external affairs in Los Angeles. AT&T had identified Coronado as a lobbyist for the company as recently as 2006, but the company said in its 2008 filing that he was no longer representing AT&T as a lobbyist.

Coronado is “going to have to pack his bags and get on the same train Jarrett is taking,” [blogger John] Aravosis said.

Glaad Writes Michelangelo Signorile:

I'm told that right now Barrios is denying to GLAAD board members that he resigned, trying to get the full board of GLAAD to save him, not accept (nor call for) his resignation, and rebut the executive committee, which voted to remove him. He is counting on friends and supporters on the board whom he put in place last year after several board members left in protest of his egregious behavior.

Signorile emailed Barrios directly yesterday with further questions about the situation:

One has to do with reports from several sources that major foundations are ready to pull all funding from GLAAD over this controversy. The other has to do with his administrative assistant, Jeanne Christiano, who two sources tell me is paid in part from Barrios's campaign fund from when he was a political candidate in Massachusetts, where she is listed as the campaign treasurer. Not only does that fact raise many issues, but it is of even more concern considering that Barrios says she sent the FCC letter. Did she send it in the capacity as treasurer of his campaign as well? I asked about these issues and said that if he is not resigning they remain relevant.

Signorile received a short email from Barrios:

"I have resigned and there is nothing further to speculate about."

Nothing official from GLAAD yet, however, since its promise of a statement on Saturday afternoon.

Previously...
GLAAD, AT&T, and Net Neutrality: A Sticky Web [tr]

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Comments

  1. Before Barrios GLAAD had a $1.2 million deficit.

    Posted by: Name: | Jun 20, 2011 7:57:42 AM


  2. Who cares????? I don't even know what GLAAD does... It isn't part of my life....

    Posted by: James | Jun 20, 2011 7:59:39 AM


  3. I'm going to assume that it wasn't because he was caught with a male prostitute

    Posted by: Christopher King | Jun 20, 2011 8:47:11 AM


  4. This story is deeply disheartening to me because I can see both sides.

    On the one hand, we need leaders who know how to raise big funds for LGBT organizations and to tap resources. Individual donors, foundations, and fundraisers are not the only sources of funding. An even bigger source are corporations. But, few corporations will give if they don't see how the donation will advance their bottom line and interests (beyond tax write-offs). So, again, on the one hand, it is understandable that Jarrett Barrios tapped resources, used the funders on his board to identify corporate sources, and authorized a letter that agreed with At&T's merger with T-Mobile and its (yes, vile) attack on net neutrality. A lot of LGBT organizations (besides the HRC) raise less money as nonprofits than conservative groups. Could it be that Barrios considered himself to be HELPING the organization fiscally in a time of economic recession?

    On the other hand, I want LGBT organizations to drive for progressive causes do indeed relate to us directly too. Rates will go up for us and everyone if AT&T and T-Mobile merge and much freedom of access will be curtailed (and made expensive) if we don't have net neutrality....for example, if a corporate entity doesn't like a LGBT web property then they may be able to manipulate its access if we use their internet resources in a similar fashion to how porn is sometimes blocked or bandwith is metered.

    Is Jarrett Barrios a crypto-conservative gay leader? Is he actually AGAINST net neutrality and other progressive causes? Or was he just trying to fund raise?

    Are all quid pro quo deals in nonprofit fundraising bad?

    My major complaint is about the PROCESS.

    All of this mess could have been handled much, much more discreetly and I fear that it will take time for it all to work itself out and the image of LGBT organizations suffer.

    Also, I love Michael Signorile, but I think his own aggressive muck-raking journalistic approach in this one instance undermines gay equality as a whole at a time when we need to be unified towards certain goals. Back off a bit, Signorile, and let things simmer and think about the larger battles in the states for marriage equality and a host of other pressing issues.

    Again, a more discreet approach is best. We do have much bigger enemies than the relatives in our house. Those outside our house are far worse.

    Agree or disagree?

    Posted by: brenda | Jun 20, 2011 9:21:12 AM


  5. This story isn't over until:

    1) The truth behind Barrios' lies is revealed.

    2) Troup Coronado is kicked off of every LGBT organization's board upon which he sits.

    Posted by: ohplease | Jun 20, 2011 11:12:38 AM


  6. @ CHRISTOPHER KING Corruption is corruption and any attempt to hide it in the name of "discretion" will be correctly labeled as complicity.

    Barrios had a clear conflict of interest, committed an indisputable violation of professional ethics for personal gain, and has likely wrecked what was left of GLAAD's deservedly shaky reputation.

    Politically, the sensible thing to do is to "hang a few Admirals," i.e., throw GLAAD under the bus. In particular, anyone associated with GLAAD who sits on any other LGBT organization's Board needs to be examined under a microscope.

    Posted by: Bryan | Jun 20, 2011 3:22:27 PM


  7. @ JAMES: Your point being that if it isn't an important part of your life it isn't important? One shudders to imagine what then qualifies as important.

    If you're under twelve in addition to being Narcissistic and Proud, all is forgiven. Otherwise, grow the hell up.

    Posted by: Bryan | Jun 20, 2011 3:25:07 PM


  8. @ CHRISTOPHER KING Corruption is corruption and any attempt to hide it in the name of "discretion" will be correctly labeled as complicity. And it's as impractical as it is wrong: it just won't work.

    Barrios had a clear conflict of interest, committed an indisputable violation of professional ethics for personal gain, and has likely wrecked what was left of GLAAD's deservedly shaky reputation. The whole organization should be publicly x-rayed down to its paperclips

    Politically, the sensible thing to do is to "hang a few Admirals," i.e., throw GLAAD under the bus. In particular, anyone associated with GLAAD who sits on any other LGBT organization's Board needs to be examined under a microscope. Every one of them is now potential poison, and since we have relative few good organizations and even fewer good people involved, contamination is a real and terrible possibility.

    Posted by: Bryan | Jun 20, 2011 3:29:15 PM


  9. the whole episode is disappointing.

    Posted by: NYC | Jun 20, 2011 8:21:39 PM


  10. The 1.2M deficit is not an accurate number. It was much lower than that but I guess creative accounting rules. AT&T gave more to GLAAD than 50K - pls double check your sources and check for grant funding under AT&T

    Posted by: NYC | Jun 20, 2011 8:23:38 PM


  11. While I was just about to provide a substantive retort to the ridiculous claims and vitriolic hate spewed by this bloggers rant - a rant that does nothing but create a circular firing squad at those leaders in the gay community fighting to level the field for each of us and desperately gather a collective voice. I cannot. Shame on you. While your blogging soapbox is dismal at best, you have failed to see the power of what you can create and change within our world. Change to support those that are marginalized. Change that galvanizes communities an organizations. Stop. Set your childhood hurt and bitterness aside. And put your energies to a positive use.

    Posted by: Mtnbiker2008 | Jun 22, 2011 4:47:49 AM


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