The following statement was released today by the American Red Cross Pride Resource Group honoring GALA President Jerry M. Dale, Jr. GALA is proud of its vibrant Board of Directors, each of whom work hard in their respective fields to effectuate positive change for the LGBTQ+ Community and bring with them a wealth of knowledge to further the mission of GALA.
We are grateful for Jerry's passion for the LGBTQ+ Community, their commitment to GALA's mission, and their great work in the broader non-profit community. Today, we celebrate this milestone with them!
Today, the Red Cross Pride Steering Committee is celebrating Jerry M Dale Jr Jerry led the resource group from its inception in 2012 until 2017 when he stepped down from the Co-Chair role, and he has spent the last year supporting the leadership transition. He's not going anywhere though... He's remaining an active member of Red Cross Pride and an incredible support to all of us as we head into FY19 and beyond! Oh, and an active Red Crosser...but that was a given!
Below is Jerry's Pride story that Cuthbert Langley put together... (Thanks Cuthbert!) Do take a moment to read and join us in thanking Jerry for his leadership and support over the years! 🏳️🌈
A simple church conversation as college graduation was approaching has led Jerry M. Dale, Jr. to more than two decades of service with the American Red Cross.
After receiving several promotions, Jerry now works in the Human Resources Department of the organization as a joint process coordinator, which supports collaboration between unions and Red Cross management. Jerry’s 22nd work anniversary is in June, a month to be loved for more than one reason.
June is Pride month, a time to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community. Jerry is the founding co-chair of the Red Cross Pride Resource Group (Red Cross Pride) and continues to be a champion for the LGBTQ+ community, both inside and outside of the Red Cross.
“One of the things I’ve always strived to do is to ensure the LGBTQ+ community understands how all of the different lines of service at the Red Cross are here to support them,” said Jerry.
Those lines of service include Service to the Armed Forces, Disaster Services, International Services, Preparedness, Health and Safety Services, and Blood Services.
Jerry was instrumental in working with the Red Cross to increase awareness of the Food and Drug Administration’s rules when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community’s ability to donate blood. To foster more understanding, Jerry pushed for (and was successful in creating) a Red Cross website devoted to explaining the process of blood donation and collection for those who are LGBTQ+. The website is available here: https://www.redcrossblood.org/donate-blood/how-to-donate/eligibility-requirements/lgbtq-donors.html
“It’s been part of my quest to help the LGBTQ+ community understand the rules around blood collection and donation,” Jerry said.
Alongside Jerry in the mission of inclusion is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Red Cross, Gail McGovern.
“To know that she is the executive champion for the Red Cross Pride group just continues to give the leaders of the group the empowerment and encouragement to step out of our comfort zones to continue to help push this organization forward,” Jerry said.
Gail has been supportive of the group ever since it was first founded back in 2012. Red Cross Pride started with just a few members and has grown over the years to include nearly 400 current employees and volunteers.
The group has worked side-by-side with senior leadership within the Red Cross to be sure the LGBTQ+ community is supported, especially during disasters big and small.
“We touch so many people through disasters, and it’s been so important for me as I work within Red Cross Pride that we make sure the organization has policies and procedures in place to ensure our LGBTQ+ clients know that this is a safe place for them and that they can be authentically themselves, even in their time of need,” Jerry said.
Jerry is reassured in the organization’s dedication to building a diverse workforce and being a beacon of hope for future generations.
“As we all bring our diverse opinions together, we’re able to weave this really powerful story of the American Red Cross,” said Jerry.