Shannon Brown is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors officer and serves as President. Professionally, she is an LCSW therapist who opened her private practice, Psychotherapy & Forensic Services, in Blount County. She has a BA in Psychology from the University of Tennessee Knoxville, and an MSSA in Social Work from Case Western Reserve University.
She won awards for her work as an advocate and activist: Irene Sogg Gross Humanitarian Award (2007) and Achievement in Direct Practice (2018), and she was inducted into the Mandel School Hall of Achievement (2018).
Shannon is also currently serving as a member of the Board of Directors for OutCare Health. Shannon has been an advocate and activist for LGBTQ+ rights and justice since the 1990's. She is also a She is committed to conducting business and maintaining partnerships with LGBTQ+ owned and operated businesses.
Gibran Cuevas is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors officer and serves as Vice President, Treasurer, and as Volunteer Coordinator. Professionally, he has a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal justice, is a retired police officer, served in the Army and is transgender. His career experience included Special Victims Unit, Narcotics, Human Trafficking, and K9 unit. Gibran activism and advocacy has been geared towards child welfare, women’s issues, and LGBTQ rights. Gibran is currently retired and volunteers as a child advocate in abuse and neglect cases.
Rhonda Cady is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors officer and serves as Secretary and Administrative Coordinator. Personally, she is a strong ally for the LGBTQ+ community. I have a great deal of motivation to for helping others in the areas of human equality, LGBTQ+ issues, veterans, and homelessness. I was born on a military base in Colorado, but consider Blount County home. I am a domestic goddess extraordinaire who loves all things Betty Boop. I have three grown children and one grandson.
Katelyn McGuire is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors member with a focus in grant writing. She obtained a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Purdue University and continued her education at Purdue to receive her Master's in Public Health. She is extremely passionate about all things health-related but holds a special place in her heart and soul for reproductive rights and for her LGBTQ+ community. Being a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, she is excited to devote time and energy to providing resources for those who are marginalized, treated as invisible, oppressed, discriminated against, and who are deserving of equal treatment. She hopes to empower her LGBTQ+ community while also helping to raise funds to help Appalachian OUTreach expand its impact. In her free time, you can find her sewing, reading, out in nature, or spending time with her partner and furbabies.
Kes Easton is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors officer and Volunteer Coordinator. Personally she is a wildlife rehab volunteer and has been working as Volunteer coordinator and public educator for wildlife rescue and rehab for the past 8 years. As a member of the LGBTQ + community she is committed to advocacy and activism within the community, especially for disabled members of the community. She has extensive experience working with physically and developmentally disabled children and adults in a medical and home setting and has a passion for ensuring they have a chance to engage with their community and find support.
Winter Cayman is an Appalachian OUTreach Board of Directors officer. Professionally, they hold an Associate's degree in Business Administration from Walters State Community College and have worked in the entertainment, retail and restaurant industries for nine years. They are a non binary drag artist and ballet dancer. Winter was born and raised in Gatlinburg Tennessee and began advocating for LGBTQ+ rights and social justice at the age of 13. Winter has made it their mission to provide LGBTQ+ individuals and allies, in the Sevierville area, opportunities for socialization and companionship. They strive to foster an environment of visibility and a collective sense of belonging for the thriving local queer community. Winter also advocates for the recognition of historically underrepresented groups such as the asexual, neurodivergent, and disabled communities they belong to. Winter enjoys spending their free time listening to hip hop music, reading autobiographies, watching documentaries, running, and has a passion for performing arts.
Board Member Position filled
In December 2015, Shannon Brown founded the Foothills LGBT Center, which was then transformed into Appalachian OUTreach in May 2019. Both the Foothills LGBT Center and Appalachian OUTreach have maintained the same goal: empower and advance our LGBTQ+ communities through programs, education, resources, partnerships, and most importantly, love, kindness and a respect for all.
Shannon is especially grateful for the following badass LGBTQ+ women who influenced, challenged, fought for, and promoted equality and rights for this amazing community: Gladys Bentley, Anne Lister, Ruth Ellis (https://www.ruthelliscenter.org/), Roberta Cowell, Audre Lorde, and of course Jane Addams.
Shannon is also very grateful for these influences: The LGBT Center of Greater Cleveland https://lgbtcleveland.org/, Jake Nash and Margie's Hope http://margieshope.org/, Case Western Reserve University https://case.edu/lgbt/, the Matthew Shepard Foundation http://www.matthewshepard.org/ and the Southern Poverty Law Center https://www.splcenter.org/
Empower, connect, & support the East Tennessee lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, ally, pansexual, polyamorous, and two-spirit (LGBTQ+) people through the provision of affirming and safe, inclusive and welcoming programs, services & partnerships, which promote community building, resource development, & education for all.
Appalachian OUTreach is committed to serving all members of the LGBTQ+ communitiy in the East Tennessee region & beyond.
Our vision is to impact change for all LGBTQ+ individuals, families, children, teens, & adults living in the East Tennessee area.
Our mission & vision are carried out by passionate, philanthropic members of the LGBTQ+ community who are have a strong desire to make a difference.
If you are interested in making a difference as a board member, volunteer, or through donations, please email us!
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