GenderPAC’s Implosion (2001)
©2001, 2013 by Dallas Denny
Source: Denny, Dallas. (2001, Spring). A word from the editor: GenderPACs implosion. Transgender Tapestry, 93, p. 6.
See Related: We’re From GenderPAC: We’re Here to Help You
“I’m tired of the fact that 85% of the people calling the office are transgender people seeking help.”
—GPAC Managing Director Gina Reiss at GenderPAC board meeting, December 2000
A Word From the Editor
By Dallas Denny
The editorial about GenderPAC which appears in this issue of Transgender Tapestry was my idea, and mine alone. I’d been toying with the idea of writing it for some time, but did not think IFGE, which takes a say-no-evil-about-others approach toward other organizations, would be happy with it. I finally decided the hell with it, and went ahead— and now I’m glad I did.
Days before I wrote this, in early December, the GenderPAC board met in Florida— and a more cynical, more dysfunctional meeting could hardly be imagined. The directors decided to give founding board chair Tony Barreto-Neto a commemorative plaque— but neutrally worded, and not until after it had been decided he would be forced from the board. The board gleefully played “the blame game,” with IFGE, Tony, and IFGE Board Chair and GenderPAC board member Julie Johnson being held responsible for the organization’s financial difficulties and its poor reputation in the transgender community. Unwilling to take responsibility for GenderPAC’s predicament, the board went after its dissidents. IFGE representative Carrie Davis, Julie, and Tony would have been canned then and there, had someone not pointed out the bylaws would not allow it.
The board then went about proposing and in some case adopting draconian requirements for its board members. It seems pathological that an organization that has already had a spate of resignations from its board would spend its time devising new ways of getting smaller. The board also passed a requirement that its members may not be officers or employees of any other national progressive nonprofit organization without the approval of the Executive Committee (i.e, without a rubber stamp by Riki).
The board adopted a “vision statement”— “GenderPAC is a broad-based national organization, not based on any single identity, working to insure every American’s right to their gender. Gender is how we look, act or dress, or how others interpret our sex or sexual orientation”—specifically designed to exclude the word transgender. At one point, GPAC Managing Director Gina Reiss made this astonishing statement: “I’m tired of the fact that 85% of the people calling the office are transgender people seeking help.”
Amazingly, there was simultaneous discussion of how to wring more money out of the transgender community.
At one point, Julie Johnson expressed her concerns about GenderPAC’s new direction and excused herself from the remainder of the session. In an astonishing display of hubris, new board member Jen Foster (it was her first meeting) said to Julie, “You are not welcome on my board!”
The purge of the GenderPAC board is near completion. When Julie, Carrie, and Tony are gone, the board will consist entirely of Riki sycophants, transgendered poseurs out to make a name for themselves and willing to sell out their own community to do so, and nontransgendered newbies who won’t have a clue. In this new Harsh Realm, those who deviate from Riki’s realpolitik will be dealt with swiftly and severely.
GenderPAC has exited stage left from the transgender theater— but it still wants our money. What say, let’s not give it to them.