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By Dawn Wolfe Gutterman
PORT HURON – On Oct. 20, the executive board of Blue Water Pride sent out an email saying that, due to inactivity, the organization would be going on inactive status.
According to the message, “One year ago the Blue Water Pride Board of Directors sent out a letter informing the community of our status, accomplishments, activities and community service. That same letter told of the lack of participation from the community and the need for an active membership. Unfortunately, the participation in activities and groups did not increase as the board would have liked. Sadly, due partly to this lack of involvement and partly to the relocation of two board members out of the Blue Water Area, the organization will be assuming inactive status.”
According to William D. Brinker, a former member of the board, the decline began when the organization’s president moved to Flint and the secretary moved to Baltimore to pursue job opportunities.
“They were kind of the stalwarts of the organization,” Brinker said.
The board of Blue Water Pride has been disbanded. After paying to keep the group’s Web site open, the remaining funds in the group’s treasury were disbursed among Crossroads, Detroit PFLAG and Safe Horizons, a Port Huron women’s shelter, according to Brinker.
Brinker said that he and other former Blue Water Pride board members hope that the group will re-form within a year, and they decided to keep the Web site up for a year to that end. In the meantime, Brinker said, “I will still be fielding questions; and I’m not a counselor but I can hopefully direct people to someone who can give them whatever assistance they need.”
Another service that Brinker will continue is to coordinate a panel from the gay and allied community to visit the human sexuality class at Saint Clair County Community College.
“The students pepper us with questions, and it’s a very successful thing,” Brinker said.
For more information about Blue Water Pride or to be directed to other Port Huron-area organizations that offer support to LGBT individuals, call William Brinker 810-982-3831.