Dear Friends of FreeState Legal:
Several years ago Aaron Merki helped found the FreeState Legal Project, and two years ago he agreed to serve as Executive Director in order to get FreeState off the ground. This has been an incredibly exciting time, and we – all of us – have built the organization into a national model for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) legal services and systemic advocacy. The work we do on behalf of low-income LGBT Marylanders is cutting edge, and our caseload and national recognition continue to grow as we fight discrimination in employment, housing, hair health care, schools, and public accommodations, and provide essential family law and immigration services to LGBT Maryland residents.
Today, I write to announce that Aaron has decided to move on to the next phase of his career. Under his direction, FreeState Legal has developed into an incredibly strong and effective nonprofit, and we look forward to Aaron’s continued involvement over the long-haul. There remains so much work to be done: Maryland is home to hundreds of thousands of LGBT people and families, who – because of stigma and discrimination – live in poverty at rates much higher than the general population. We must all resolve to continue the fight for equality and justice until LGBT parents, youth, workers, educators, and tenants are treated fairly and with dignity. With our team of attorneys, staff, volunteers, donors, and board members who are dedicated to FreeState Legal’s success, we have little doubt that FreeState will continue to grow as a national leader in fighting for justice for low-income LGBT individuals.
Aaron will continue in his current role at FreeState into October 2014. The Board of Directors and I have convened an executive search committee, and we will have more information for you as the transition develops. Any questions or concerns should be directed to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Chair, FreeState Legal Project, Inc.