OUT for Sustainability was dreamt up in the fall of 2008 on the premise that LGBTQ identity and the sustainability values are absolutely interconnected. Our first advisory council set the tone that partnerships, action, and positive engagement must be the cornerstones of our work. Since those early days of community building in Seattle, OUT4S has evolved organically to become a leading voice for the LGBTQ sustainability movement.
In collaboration with 175+ partners, OUT4S has hosted 4,000+ LGBTQ and allied folks at 100+ events in Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Vermont, Texas, Connecticut, and New York with an impactful vision of a Fabulous Planet.
Roundtables with stakeholders, ranging from architects to anarchists to business leaders to nonprofit CEOs, to define and scope the fledgling idea of a bridge for green and gay.
First public event on Capitol Hill at Greendrinks Seattle, and monthly events thereafter including the first Earth Gay and the first version of Fab Planet, the Social Sustainability Conference. Also had a social on sustainable sex, were featured at GreenFest Seattle, and hosted the first Celebrate Local dinner.
Incorporated as a registered charity under the umbrella of Three Dollar Bill, started banking with BECU, launched the first Board of Directors.
Hosted a much larger Earth Gay in Seattle, carried on with frequent events ranging from service work to social engagement around topics like Queer Youth and the Environment. We were panelists at GreenFest Seattle and written up in publications like Seattle Times. Consulted with Pride in Seattle getting them to commit to compostable cups in the beer garden, no plastic bottle handouts in the parade, and no balloons.
Hosted an even larger Earth Gay Seattle (175 volunteers) and a more produced Celebrate Local dinner with honorees speaking and local chefs crafting a locally sourced meal using recycled fabric homemade napkins, thrift sourced plates, etc. Began the process toward becoming a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.
Hosted the largest Earth Gay Seattle in our history, with 300+ volunteers and major supporters like Boeing and Starbucks building a new park along Lake Union. Produced the largest Celebrate Local as well, with a notably fun cake auction that raised over $4K alone.
Started the move beyond Seattle by taking on our first board member in San Francisco, coinciding nicely with earning our hard fought 501(c)(3) status. Started bringing more structure to the organization and went for more distributed events in Ocean Shores (OUT at the Beach), and multiple Earth Gays in Seattle and an Earth Gay in Phoenix, AZ.
Co-hosted the first Earth Gay Vermont, which would set the standard for Earth Gays to come. Continued Earth Gay Seattle and converted the Celebrate Local dinner into the Fab Planet Summit, which saw a national reach and meaningful content take us to the next level. Supported volunteers working with the Gay Games and pursued Greener Pride consulting.
Continued national Earth Gay expansion with service events in Seattle, Tacoma, Vermont, New York, San Francisco, and Oakland. Continued bringing on board members from beyond Seattle, now representing 3 states on both coasts. Continued hosting socials around the country as well, from picnics in SF to salons in NYC.
Hosted Fab Planet Summit in San Francisco at the meaningful Women’s Building, bringing 100 deep thinkers together for a day of panels, discussions, and even a personal sustainability free movement seminar. Kept going with Earth Gay in many states, building partnerships to continue momentum, such as Out There Adventures.
Pursued more digital programming than ever, launching Nature is so Gay, My Greener Pride, and a new website to support it. Supported important events like the DC Climate March, and kept up Earth Gay through partnerships and volunteers in the cities, rather than nationally organized, an important shift for us.
This was a quieter year due to several board members time conflicts and the state of the world. We refreshed the brand and improved back office systems, and kept Earth Gay going, but decided to postpone Fab Planet to 2020 to do it right. Continued online engagement and started looking at Plastic Free Pride through a meeting arranged by Vivienne Westwood in London.
This year is already looking strong, with the partnership model for Earth Gay fully implemented and a board recruited with fresh energy and ideas. More to come…