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Three New Officers Begin Tenure on PFLAG National Board of Directors

October 14, 2022

WASHINGTON—PFLAG National, the nation’s first and largest organization dedicated to supporting, educating, and advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) people and those who love them, announces the tenure of three new officers of the Board of Directors to begin its 50th anniversary year. 

An experienced executive business leader, Susan Thronson takes the helm as Board President. Dr. Edith Guffey, MSW joins as Vice President, and Antón Castellanos-Usigli, MPH serves as Secretary. The trio join existing officers—Treasurer Chad Libertus of KPMG and Liz DeJesus, Vice President and Chair of the Regional Directors Council—to lead the 21-member board.

“PFLAG has been a foundational resource for LGBTQ+ people and their families for 50 years because our values from the start have been to listen— really listen—to LGBTQ+ people to guide our work. This ethos is core to PFLAG’s ability to thrive and to lead with love in our communities and our homes,” said Susan Thronson, President of the PFLAG National Board of Directors. “I am very excited to be leading PFLAG into the next 50 years alongside a Board of Directors and a Regional Directors Council that reflects the diversity of communities we serve as we strive to create a caring, just, and affirming world for LGBTQ+ people and those who love them.”

For 50 years, PFLAG National has brought LGBTQ+ people, families and allies together, but what began with a march and small community meetings has evolved. Under the leadership of the Board and Executive Director Brian K. Bond, PFLAG has grown and adapted to meet the needs of a 21st century public; meeting people where they are—in person and virtually—with the content and engagement they need in the ways they want it. From creating PFLAG Connects: Communities, culturally inclusive virtual community spaces where people of similar backgrounds can gather, find support, and learn without judgment, to strategic investment in Minority Depository Institutions, to intentional partnerships with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)-led and centered organizations, including the Center for Black Equity. 

With strong, engaged, and culturally diverse board leadership, PFLAG National begins its 50th year well-positioned to begin the journey of the next 50 years.

Biographies:

Portrait of Susan Thronson, a smiling person with gray hair and a blue patterned shirtSusan Thronson, who uses the pronouns she and her, is the first parent of a transgender child to serve as President of the Board of PFLAG National. She turned to PFLAG when her teenaged child came out seeking support for a gender identity transition. There, she found a community of transgender advocates and, most importantly, parents who shared their families’ experiences. She became a PFLAG mom. It changed her life — from a passive ally, to supportive parent and, today, an activist for creating a caring, just and affirming world for all.

Susan has served on the PFLAG National Board since 2012, most recently as Vice President. Her foundational professional expertise was developed at Marriott International where she held positions of increasing impact for 24 years. Now, she focuses on corporate governance as a public company board director. She draws on these experiences to provide counsel on  strategic leadership and aligning an  organization so it can achieve a bold vision. 

Susan and her husband Steve live in Southern California where they are active members of PFLAG Palm Springs/Desert Communities.

Portrait of Dr. Edith Guffey, MPH, a smiling person with short black hair wearing glasses, small hoop earings, and a black sport jacketDr. Edith Guffey, MSW, who uses she and her pronouns, is Vice President of the Board of Directors of PFLAG National. Dr. Edith Guffey, MSW, who uses she and her pronouns, is Vice President of the Board of Directors of PFLAG National. She is a born midwesterner, who has dedicated her 30-plus year career serving as an officer and leader in the United  Church of Christ as a voice for  social justice, equity and inclusion of all. Guffey is passionate about the challenges faced by people from marginalized communities, including Black and LGBTQ+ people. She is retired as the Conference Minister of the Kansas-Oklahoma Conference. In 2021, she was one of three people, and the only parent, asked to testify before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee in support of the Equality Act. Dr. Guffey and her husband Jerry have two adult children.
Portrait of a person with brown hair, a 5 o'clock shadow-style beard, and blue button-down shirtAntón Castellanos-Usigli, MPH, who uses he and him pronouns, is Secretary of the Board of Directors of PFLAG National. He is a leader in public health with expertise in sexual health and sexual rights. His work has led to the development of sexual health programs that connect men who have sex with men (MSM) to comprehensive sexual health services including HIV/STI testing, STI treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), and innovations in telemedical technology. Since 2020, Castellanos-Usigli has served as an executive consultant with AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) to strengthen patient retention and re-engagement nationwide. He is also a consultant for Fenway Health focused on increasing the volume of clients through digital marketing strategies, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) uptake, and strengthening patient experience. Castellanos-Usigli is a Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) candidate at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Cheng Fellow of the Social Innovation and Change Initiative of the Harvard Kennedy School.

 

The biographies of continuing officers Chad Libertus, Treasurer, and Liz DeJesus, Vice President and Chair of the Regional Directors Council, and all of PFLAG National’s board members can be found at PFLAG.org/About/Our-People.

 

 

 

 


About PFLAG

PFLAG is an organization of LGBTQ+ people, parents, families, and allies who work together to create an equitable and inclusive world. We are hundreds of thousands of people and hundreds of chapters from coast to coast who are leading with love to support families, educate allies, and advocate for just, equitable, and inclusive legislation and policies. Since our founding in 1973, PFLAG works every day to ensure LGBTQ+ people everywhere are safe, celebrated, empowered and loved. Learn more, find support, donate, and take action at PFLAG.org.

Media Contact

Laura McGinnis (she/her),
Sr. Manager, Press and Public Relations

[email protected]  |  (202) 864-2247

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