PRIDE!Kent faces uncertain future

Steve Bushong

This weekend, three PRIDE!Kent board members resigned and the president stepped down from the position.

The resignations came amid rising tensions among board members and with the Queer Liberation Front, a student group with similar interests.

President Amanda Boyd wrote in an e-mail Saturday that she will become the group’s programming director and Chris Taylor, last year’s president of PRIDE!Kent, will assume the presidency.

In addition, Carrie Wicks will become vice president, replacing Shawn Szymecki, and Colleen Eltibi will become secretary, replacing Clare Ford, according to Boyd’s e-mail.

The changes, however, are still unofficial.

PRIDE!Kent’s constitution and the university by-laws for student organizations have yet to be considered, Taylor said, adding the laws will be looked at today.

If a vote is needed to confirm the changes, it could come as early as Thursday at PRIDE!Kent’s next meeting.

“We want this to be a legitimate board change, not something that people will question,” Taylor said.

Once the changes are official, he said he’d work to pacify Kent State’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

“I think both organizations are wonderful,” he said, speaking of the relationship between PRIDE!Kent and QLF. “We need to work together, and we’re going to do that.”

Katherine Rybski, former PRIDE!Kent programming director who is among the resigned, said the conflict between PRIDE!Kent and QLF contributed a “fair bit” to her resignation.

But Rybski is hopeful new leadership will bring the groups closer.

“Christopher Taylor is an excellent leader and organizer, and . Josh Sebrasky (co-chair of QLF) is a great person and would definitely be willing to work with PRIDE.”

Contact minority affairs reporter Steve Bushong at [email protected].