LGBTQ+ Dems Celebrate Florida Commission on Human Relations Victory

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 3, 2021 DELRAY BEACH FL – The Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR) has announced its intent to investigate claims of anti-LGBTQ discrimination in accordance with the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County. Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement: “Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is illegal in Florida. The Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock was clear and unequivocal that the civil rights of the LGBTQ community are protected. Housing, employment and public accommodations are basic rights, and Floridians can no longer be denied due to discrimination and bigotry. This is a big step for ensuring everyone is included in Florida.”

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Congratulations to Our Newly Elected Directors!

On January 23-24, our members in nine regions across the state met virtually to elect a Regional Director, a Deputy Director, and an Alternate Director. Congratulations to our newly elected directors!
Region 1:
Regional Director: Jeff Nall, Escambia
Deputy Director: Mark Gillman, Escambia
Region 2:
Regional Director: Joshua Hicks, Duval
Deputy Director: Clifton Roby, Volusia
Alternate Director: Suzanne Raines, Volusia
Region 3:
Regional Director: Nathan Sharpe, Citrus
Deputy Director: Jocelyn Dickman, Pasco
Alternate Director: Jay Chetney, Pinellas
Region 4:
Regional Director: Brandon Nelson, Orange
Deputy Director: Eleanor McDonough, Osceola
Alternate Director: Robin Witt, Orange
Region 5:
Regional Director: Ercilia Albitsu, Hillsborogh
Deputy Directer: Jack Raines, Polk
Alternate Director: Peter Horstman, Hillsborough
Region 6:
Regional Director: Joe Agostine, Sarasota
Deputy Director: Peter Ryan Imhoff, Sarasota
Alternate Director: Willie Middleton, Lee
Region 7:
Regional Director: Kevin Muth, Palm Beach
Deputy Director: Raphael Gutierrez, Palm Beach
Alternate Director: Rolando Barrero, Palm Beach
Region 8:
Regional Director: Michael Albetta, Broward
Deputy Director: Carvelle Estriplet, Broward
Alternate Director: John Lazar, Broward
Region 9:
Regional Director: Javier Estevez, Miami-Dade
Deputy Director: Miriam Lopez, Miami-Dade
Alternate Director: Joe Falk, Miami-Dade

LGBTQ+ Dems Celebrate Transgender Military Ban Reversal


DELRAY BEACH FL – The Biden administration announced today that it has reversed Donald Trump’s transgender military ban. This action comes after Biden’s day one executive order implementing the historic Bostock v. Clayton County ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, and the Justice Department revoking a last-minute, anti-LGBTQ Trump administration memo.

Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement in response to the transgender military ban reversal.

“President Biden is proving from the very beginning that his will be the most pro-LGBTQ administration in American history. His executive order today reversing the shameful ban on transgender service members imposed by the Trump administration underscores that he values individuals for who they are and how they can best use their skills and talents. Discrimination has no place in America, and especially in our military.”

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LGBTQ+ Democrats Celebrate Inauguration of President Joe Biden


DELRAY BEACH FL – Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement in response to the inauguration of President Joe Biden.

“Today is the day we’ve been waiting for. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris take office as the next President and Vice President of the United States. With pro-equality leaders in charge of the White House, House of Representatives and Senate, we can now take big steps towards equality for all.

“Now is the time to be bold and aggressive in enacting an agenda to help all Americans. This means passing the Equality Act, ensuring DACA protections, ending systemic racism, letting science lead the way on climate and health care policy, and prioritizing the coronavirus pandemic response as it should have been all along.

“We have replaced the most corrupt and dangerous president in American history with a leader who has character, empathy, decency, and plans to turn our country around. The LGBTQ+ community stands ready to support President Biden and Vice President Harris — and work with them to build America back better than ever before.”

Virtual Meeting with Commissioner Jack Porter

The Capital Equality Democratic Caucus is kicking off the new year with a Virtual Meeting featuring Tallahassee City Commissioner Jack Porter! Jack was one of the first candidates we spoke to at an early candidate forum during the 2020 election cycle.

Log on to Zoom and join us to hear more about Jack’s experience in office so far and ideas for Tallahassee’s future.

The event will stream live on Zoom on Tuesday, January 19, 2021, beginning at 6:30pm, and is open to all Democrats.

Registration in advance is required.

LGBTQ+ Dems Call for Impeachment and Removal of President Trump


DELRAY BEACH FL – Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement calling for President Trump and his enablers to face consequences for their actions that have greatly damaged our democracy.

“President Trump deliberately incited a mob of extremists to attack the U.S. Capitol. Six people have lost their life since the tragedy, including two Capitol Police officers. Trump spent months spreading conspiracy theories that inspired insurrection and he threw the final match onto a powder keg of domestic terrorism. There must be consequences for his actions and further violence must be prevented.

“It’s clear that President Trump’s Cabinet won’t perform their constitutional duty and invoke the 25th Amendment to remove him from office. The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus calls on Congress to take matters into its own hands and immediately launch impeachment proceedings. Impeachment, conviction, and removal are the only appropriate remedies for Trump’s leading role in a violent attack on our democracy.

“The members of Congress who voted to overturn the 2020 election results must also be held accountable. The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus renews its call for Congress to expel these members, and we additionally call on all businesses to end political contributions to these politicians and any organizations affiliated with them. Elected representatives who don’t abide by the rule of law must be held to account.”


LGBTQ+ Dems Congratulate FDP Chair Manny Diaz and New Party Leadership


DELRAY BEACH FL – Today the Florida Democratic Party (FDP) elected a new chair and the following party leadership:

  • Manny Diaz, Chair
  • Judy Mount, Vice Chair
  • Casmore Shaw, Secretary
  • Francine Garcia, Treasurer
  • Democratic National Committee Members Nadia Ahmad, Grace Carrington, Marcus Dixon, Samantha Hope Herring, Thomas Kennedy, Sanjay Patel, Terrie Rizzo, Sean Shaw, and Steve Simeonidis, and LGBTQ+ Caucus members Alan Clendening and Vivian Rodriguez

Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement congratulating the new leadership:

“We congratulate Manny Diaz on being elected Florida Democratic Party Chair. Our community looks forward to working with him on his vision to unite the party and rebuild it from the ground up, with a focus on our party clubs and caucuses, DECs, and organizers across the state.

“We also congratulate Judy Mount on being reelected Vice Chair. With the historic election of Chair Diaz, Vice Chair Mount, Secretary Shaw, and Treasurer Garcia, all FDP officers are people of color, reflecting the diversity of our party and our state. We also look forward to working with the newly elected members of the Democratic National Committee.

“LGBTQ+ Democrats are grateful for the leadership of outgoing Chair Terrie Rizzo. She is a true friend and ally of our community. Her commitment and dedication to growing our Party will not be forgotten.

“Florida’s LGBTQ+ community knows that our path to equality requires electing more equality champions to Congress, Florida’s Cabinet, and the state legislature. Our lives depend on it. With Chair Diaz’s vision and this new leadership, we are ready to do the hard work it will take to turn Florida blue and achieve equality for all.”

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LGBTQ+ Dems Call for Trump Cabinet to Invoke the 25th Amendment


DELRAY BEACH FL – Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement in response to Congress certifying the 2020 election results after supporters of President Trump took over the U.S. Capitol.

“We’ve seen an historic 24 hours for our country: Congress certified Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the next President and Vice President of the United States. And just as momentously, Democrats won control of the U.S. Senate with confirmations of the elections in Georgia. The first Black man from the Deep South, Rev. Raphael Warnock, and the first Jewish man from the Deep South, Jon Ossoff, will ensure the implementation of the change the Biden-Harris agenda will bring.

“But it’s also a day that will be seen as one of America’s greatest disgraces. After deliberately spreading conspiracy theories and lies about the 2020 election, President Trump incited a mob of armed domestic terrorists who violently stormed the U.S. Capitol and occupied both chambers in an un-American display of insurrection.

“President Trump violated his oath of office, and it’s clear he can no longer discharge the powers and duties of the Presidency. The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus calls on Trump’s Cabinet to perform their Constitutional duty, invoke the 25th Amendment, and remove him from office.

“In addition, we call on the U.S. Congress to expel Florida Senator Scott and Representatives Cammack, Diaz-Balart, Donalds, Dunn, Franklin, Gaetz, Giminez, Mast, Posey, Rutherford, Steube and Webster for their role in objecting to certification of the election results, which helped incite the tragic events at the Capitol. Public figures like Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump Jr. who encouraged insurrection – and those who committed the act – must also be arrested and held accountable.

“The United States has lived with good leaders and bad leaders, but for the last four years we have endured the worst leaders in our history. Change is coming, but we must recognize the challenges that are still on the table — notably, those who trumpet their own views of the democracy envisioned in our Constitution, even though those views are untethered from reality.

“Elections have consequences. Our democracy has survived this test, but we now know how fragile our republic is. It’s time for healing, and this is our opportunity to return to truth, facts, and evidence in our policymaking. We must make the most of it.”

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Time to Renew Your Membership for 2021


The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus elects its leadership every two years. Elections for Caucus officers will be held at our Winter Membership Meeting on March 6, 2021. This will be a virtual meeting and more info will be coming to you soon about that.

We are also electing our Regional Directors in a series of regional meetings in January 2021. Each region has three positions available: Regional Director, Deputy Director and Alternate Director. The Regional Director has a vote on the Caucus Board.

Please note that we have a new regional structure taking effect with this election in accordance with the votes of our membership at our Summer 2019 and Winter 2020 conferences. These changes updated our regions and revised the regional leadership.

Due to the pandemic, our regional elections will occur via Zoom. Registration links will be sent to members for their specific meeting no later than one week prior to the meeting. The election schedule is as follows:

Region 1, Northwest: Saturday, January 23, 11am ET/10am CT
Convener: Mark Gillman
Counties: Bay, Calhoun, Columbia, Dixie, Escambia, Franklin, Gadsen, Gilchrist, Gulf, Hamilton, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, LaFayette, Liberty, Leon, Madison, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Taylor, Wakulla, Walker, Washington

Region 2, Northeast: Saturday, January 23, Noon ET
Convener: Daniel Henry
Counties: Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Nassau, Putnam, St. Johns, Union, Volusia

Region 3, Central Northwest: Saturday, January 23, 1pm ET
Convener: Rick Boylan
Counties: Citrus, Hernando, Lake, Levy, Marion, Pasco, Pinellas, Sumter

Region 4: Central Northeast: Saturday, January 23, 2pm ET
Convener: Beth McMillen
Counties: Brevard, Orange, Osceola, Seminole

Region 5, Central: Saturday, January 23, 3pm ET
Convener: Sally Phillips
Counties: Hardee, Highland, Hillsborough, Polk

Region 6, Southwest: Sunday, January 24, 1pm ET
Convener: Mary Ann Shea
Counties: Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hendry, Lee, Manatee, Sarasota

Region 7, Central Southeast: Sunday, January 24, 2pm ET
Convener: Nicholas Coppola
Counties: Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee, Palm Beach, St, Lucie

Region 8, Southeast: Sunday, January 24, 3pm ET
Convener: Anthony Ginsburg
Counties: Broward

Region 9, South: Sunday, January 24, 4pm ET
Convener: Javier Estevez
Counties: Miami-Dade, Monroe

Regional directors are key to our strategy of grassroots organizing, local visibility and community awareness. According to the Caucus bylaws:

The Regional Directors shall organize chapters in selected counties in their regions, shall coordinate Caucus activities within each region, shall maintain close collaboration with county Democratic Executive Committees, and shall represent the President, at his or her request, in functions and meetings within the region. A regional director shall maintain residency within the region from which elected; notwithstanding any other provision of these bylaws, failure to comply shall result in immediate forfeiture of office.

A few rules:

  1. Each region will elect a Regional Director, Deputy Director, and Alternate Director to serve on the Board of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus for a period of two years.
  2. Any Caucus member in good standing is eligible for election to one of these positions.
  3. Nominations for these positions shall be made from the floor on the day of the election.
  4. Absentee and proxy voting are not allowed under Caucus bylaws at this time.
  5. The term of service begins when the convener certifies the election at the close of the regional meeting, at which time the elected directors and alternates must sign the Florida Democratic Party-prescribed loyalty oath. A PDF copy of the Oath will be sent to each convener. They will then forward it to the newly elected Director(s). Arrangements will be made to get them filled out. Once filled out, they should be sent to to prepare the Caucus for recertification with the FDP.
  6. Newly elected Directors should mark their calendars for the January 27th Board of Directors meeting.
  7. For more information about the election rules and process, please refer to the Caucus bylaws or email with specific questions.

Caucus members must be in good standing on the day of the election to be eligible to run for the office of Regional Director, Deputy Director or Alternate Director. Caucus membership fees for 2021 are due and payable by December 31, 2020. New members are eligible to vote and run for regional director if 2021 membership dues are paid and received by the Treasurer by the day before the regional elections. Our bylaws require that all current officers must renew their membership by December 31.

If you have not already renewed your membership, please visit the our Membership page for information and options for payment. Thank you for your participation!


Dave Cutler, Secretary
Ricki Bauman, Assistant Secretary

Caucus Statement on Transgender Day of Remembrance

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2020

DELRAY BEACH FL – Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to honor the memory of those who lost their lives to anti-transgender prejudice. According to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), at least 37 transgender people are known to have been murdered in the United States in 2020 – the most since HRC started tracking in 2013, and the majority of which are Black or Latinx transgender women. Three of those victims were Floridians.

Tony McDade
Killed in a police-involved shooting on May 27 in Tallahassee

Bree Black
Shot on July 3 in Pompano Beach

Yunieski Carey Herrera
Stabbed on November 17 in Miami

Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement for Transgender Day of Remembrance and to honor the lives that we’ve lost:

“We honor our transgender sisters and brothers who we’ve lost and who had the courage to live life as their authentic selves. It’s on each of us to fight hate in all forms, raise awareness, and build acceptance. Today is a hard reminder that we have so much more work to do to create a society that loves and accepts transgender people. We stand united with Florida’s transgender community, who have been the target of deadly violence.”

Nathan Bruemmer, Legislative Director of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, reacted to record levels of violence:

“With reported murders reaching their highest levels in more than a decade, we’ve lost a record number of transgender people in 2020, including a fellow Floridian in Miami this week. It is an epidemic of violence, especially against transgender women of color. Our thoughts are with them today, and we honor them with our actions that ensure transgender people can live life without fear of violence.”

Chapters of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus are taking part in events across the state today:

Tampa Bay Transgender Film Festival (12 PM ET – Sunday, 11/22)

Human Rights Campaign Georgia Voter Outreach (4-6 PM ET)
A virtual event providing resources on the challenges that trans voters face and outreach to “Equality Voters” in advance of the U.S. Senate runoff elections.

Virtual Trans Day of Remembrance (4-5 PM ET)

Trans Day of Resilience in Duval County (5-6:30 PM ET)

Virtual TDOR Observance in Palm Beach County (5-6 PM ET)

TDOR Vigil in Pinellas County (7-9 PM ET)

TDOR Vigil in Alachua County (7-9 PM ET)

PFLAG Connects: Virtual Vigil (8 PM ET)

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A Chartered Chapter of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus