Photo from Project Q Atlanta — GLBT Liaison Senior Patrol Officer Patricia Powell

The Atlanta Police Department has announced the nine members of its Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered (GLBT) Advisory Board, which will assist the APD in better understanding the public safety needs of the GLBT community.

“One of my priorities on becoming chief was to repair the relationships and build the trust we had lost in various communities over the years,” said Atlanta Police Chief George Turner. “We recognize the importance of the GLBT community all over Atlanta, and want to make sure we are listening to their concerns.”

APD GLBT Liaison Senior Patrol Officer Patricia Powell said the board members were selected to represent a cross-section of the community, including home and business owners, youth advocates, clergy and HIV/AIDS educators. The process of selecting the board began in early July and drew dozens of nominations.

Mayor Kasim Reed has pledged to have the APD appoint a second GLBT liaison.

The nine members of the board are: Ebonee Bradford Barnes, business owner and grass-roots GLBT activist; Betty Couvertier, activist/community organizer and producer of WRFG Radio’s “Alternative Perspectives” program about the GLBT community; Tracy L. Elliot, executive director of AID Atlanta since April 2007; Glen Paul Freedman, executive assistant to Lisa M. Borders, president of the Grady Health Foundation; Tracee McDaniel, transgender advocate, founder and executive director of the Juxtaposed Center for Transformation Inc.; Terence McPhaul, executive director and CEO of Youth Pride; Joshua M. Noblitt, minister of social justice at Saint Mark United Methodist Church in Midtown; Philip Rafshoon, founder, owner and operator of Outwrite Bookstore & Coffeehouse since 1993; and Molly Simmons, assistant vice president of legal services and ethics, privacy and compliance officer for Chamberlin Edmonds, an Atlanta-based provider of patient-advocacy-based eligibility and enrollment services.

The GLBT Advisory Board’s first meeting will be Sept. 20 to elect a chair and vice chair and discuss objectives for the board. All meetings will be open to the public.

–John Schaffner