Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

GetEqual co-founders making changes

The co-founders  of GetEqual, the national group that helped get the federal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal bill passed, are making some changes.

In an e-mail blast Wednesday, January 19, co-founder and Director Robin McGehee (pictured at right) announced that she’s returning to her job as a college professor but will remain as director. She didn’t say whether she would still get paid by GetEqual. Her salary has been $89,000.

Co-founder Kip Williams will continue organizing with GetEqual but will be going to graduate school, McGehee said. Williams didn’t respond to an e-mail asking whether he’ll still be paid for working with GetEqual. Williams’s most recent salary with the group had been about $58,000.

While working for DADT repeal, GetEqual made a name for itself by taking actions ranging from chaining themselves to a White House gate to crashing pricey Democratic fundraisers where President Barack Obama was present.

Congress finally passed the legislation in December, and Obama signed it December 22.

McGehee said the group’s run out of the money that Jonathan Lewis, the son of one of the founders of the Progressive auto insurance group, had provided them to get started in March.

In an October interview, GetEqual Manging Director Heather Cronk, who’s salary has been $70,000, estimated Lewis had contributed $400,000, “certainly no more than $440,000.” GetEqual’s budget has been around $500,000. The group has also worked to raise funds through e-mail blasts and its website.

In her e-mail, McGehee said GetEqual’s raising money to support three full-time regional field directors, a managing director, and state-based organizers.

“While others might have decided to spend the past year fundraising, we chose to focus on organizing and I look back with no regrets in that decision, based on our ability to help push for legislative change,” McGehee said in her e-mail.

It’s not clear if the field directors have been hired yet. The e-mail doesn’t say who any of them are or how much they’ll be paid. McGehee didn’t respond to an interview request.

McGehee said in her e-mail that the field directors will identify, train, and organize state leads “who will both proactively and reactively work with regional state coordinators to build a movement of people in each state who will be poised to take action locally and will be tied together by a national narrative.”

She didn’t say what’s happening with Dan Fotou, GetEqual’s direct action strategist, or Michelle Wright, their campaign associate.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, January 20, 2011 @ 12:26 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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