The board and staff are pleased to announce Chelsea O’Neil Karcher has been named the next Executive Director of GSAFE. Karcher will officially assume this new role on July 1, 2016. The selection was made after a vigorous search and selection process to find a candidate with a proven track record in successful management and fundraising as well as commitment to youth leadership, LGBTQ+ advocacy, anti-racism, and social justice.
“We are very pleased to announce this appointment,” reported GSAFE Board Chair William Gilles. “Chelsea will bring leadership and creativity to GSAFE’s programs and has a breadth of perspective and experience at programming, fundraising, and leadership as well as a strong understanding and commitment to the values and mission of the organization.”
The board, with staff input, unanimously selected Karcher as the best person to help lead us through this next stage of organizational transformation, particularly as we deepen our work focused on racial and trans justice. Prior to this appointment Chelsea served as Communications Specialist and Social Justice Educator at the University of Wisconsin – Madison Multicultural Student Center, developing and implementing media strategy and intersectional racial justice education initiatives to support the capacity of students of color, LGBTQ+ students of color, and their allies.
Karcher says of her new position, “I am humbled and honored to join the incredibly dedicated and passionate team at GSAFE and continue to collaborate with community members across Wisconsin to advance educational justice for all youth, particularly tending to the expressed needs and unique challenges of queer and trans youth of color.”
Throughout her career, Karcher’s work has been rooted social responsibility and guiding institutions through critical transformation and growth. In addition, Chelsea’s experience includes over 10 years of fundraising, administration, communications and program management as direct advocacy and support services to children and families.
Karcher holds a masters degree in Transpersonal Counseling: Psychology: Art Therapy and is a graduate of the Social Justice Training Institute.