August 24, 2020

Dear Sue, August 24, 2020

Dear Sue

Let's talk Delta Foundation.

But first for anyone reading that doesn't already know, let me get my own of frame of reference out of the way. I'm a middle-aged straight white male who's never felt the need to question his gender or his orientation. I also realize that each part of that previous sentence reflects a number of different privileges - each of which I do my best to not skew my point of view.

Ok, so this week we learned that the Delta Foundation is dissolving:

The Delta Foundation of Pittsburgh, a 24-year-old organization whose signature event was the annual Pittsburgh Pride celebration that brought together members and supporters of the LGBTQIA+ community for a Downtown festival, plans to dissolve.

The postponement of Pittsburgh Pride this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and uncertainty about whether the event could be held in 2021 left the nonprofit without a revenue stream and no means to move forward, board president Martin Healey said.

From the article (and from what you've written on your blog) it seems that prior to the arrival of Covid-19, the foundation was the subject of a number of criticisms. However if the dissolution is based simply on the cash-flow problem caused by the cancellation of the 2020 Pride events, then it's reasonable to assume that the foundation would probably not be dissolving were it not for the pandemic.

The criticisms, though, would still be there. So rather than diving into the details of this dissolution, I'd like to ask about what the foundation was supposed to be. From the website I read that:

The mission of the Delta Foundation of Pittsburgh is to be a vigilant catalyst for change that produces increased opportunities and a high quality of life for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania.

Which I realize is a necessary website generalization but, specifically, what do you think it should have looked like?  What was it supposed to be doing that it wasn't? And what, in your opinion, should its successor look like?

With respect,