May 18, 2023
Providence, RI–May 22, 2023—A year after founding and leading the Rhode Island Queer Political Action Committee, Executive Director Ken Barber steps down from his role as the head of the organization.
In March 2022, Ken brought together a group of Queer Rhode Island activists with the goal of supporting progressive LGBTQIA+ political candidates and providing education to the Queer community on Rhode Island’s civic system. Last year, the organization endorsed fourteen LGBTQIA+ candidates running for city council, state Senate, and the state House of Representatives. They also outreached the community at local Pride events over the summer, and hosted voter registration drives at bars in Providence to encourage the community to vote. In November 2022, they hosted an LGBTQIA+ Leadership Summit to bring together Queer business owners, non-profit leaders, and politicians to discuss key issues facing the community. The RI Queer PAC has connected with the RI Secretary of State to develop a comprehensive civic education program for LGBTQIA+ Rhode Islanders. All these achievements would not be possible without Ken’s leadership and dedication.
Ken’s life and career schedule changed drastically and suddenly, and he is no longer able to focus on the organization. In his place, two Co-Directors will lead the organization, kimika ross (she/they), and Ryan Vigneau (he/him). Moving forward, the two of them wish to continue the work Ken started and have plans to develop a more robust and inclusive civic education program.