Aug 19, 2013
Equality NC Names Chris Sgro Executive Director
Raleigh, N.C. – Equality NC and its Board of Directors announced today that Chris Sgro, a senior Congressional staffer for U.S. Senator Kay Hagan, with extensive experience advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) North Carolinians, will serve as the new executive director for Equality NC, the state’s leading LGBT advocacy organization. Sgro will begin his tenure with the Raleigh-based organization on September 6.
“I am deeply honored for the opportunity to serve North Carolina’s LGBT community as Equality NC’s executive director and to build upon the organization’s tremendous success over the past four decades,” said Sgro, who currently serves as Director of Economic Development for Sen. Hagan. “Equality NC has much work to do in order to protect and secure the rights of LGBT citizens across this state, but North Carolina has long stood as a beacon of equality and fairness in the South, and with fresh leadership and resolve, I know it can be done. Alongside our talented staff and dedicated board, I am ready to lead Equality NC in our unflinching fight to make the Old North State a state of equality."
As an organizer and finance director for state and federal-level campaigns, and now a seasoned staffer for a sitting U.S. Senator, Sgro is no stranger to North Carolina’s political landscape and victories, including those for the LGBT community. He was a founding member of LGBT Democrats of North Carolina and has served as treasurer for the LGBT Democrats of Guilford County.
Following roles with non-profits like America Votes, an issue advocacy group, and CARE, a national anti-poverty organization, Sgro assumed management positions with two winning political campaigns, including Kay Hagan for U.S. Senate and Don Vaughan for North Carolina State Senate, before being promoted to Director of Economic Development in Sen. Hagan’s office.
The experienced pro-LGBT and equality advocate comes to Equality NC as the organization prepares to lead the charge in a challenging legislative environment for pro-equality issues.
“I am proud to bring my years of political experience and knowledge to Equality NC as the organization continues its fight to keep our state on the right side of history,” said Sgro. “As executive director, I join a committed team dedicated to mobilizing a growing statewide network of supporters and bringing the full resources of the organization to bear in our effort to secure rights and protections for all LGBT North Carolinians.”
Sgro comes to Equality NC as the organization works to lead a movement for equality all across the South, including achieving protections for North Carolina’s LGBT workers, establishing relationship recognitions for local LGBT couples, and fostering LGBT political candidates in all corners of the state.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, we are thrilled that Chris will lead Equality NC as we head into a new era for the organization and North Carolina,” said Equality NC Board Chair Elaine Martin. “As an LGBT advocate living and working in North Carolina, he has seen first-hand the challenges facing LGBT populations in the South and I know he is committed to Equality NC’s mission of securing equality and justice for LGBT North Carolinians.”
Sgro was selected by Equality NC’s Board of Directors after an extensive, national search. He will replace Stuart Campbell as executive director, who came to the organization in 2011, during the height of the organization’s campaign against Amendment One, the state’s ban on the freedom to marry.
Equality NC Foundation Chair Ken Wittenauer invited the public to meet Sgro at the Equality NC Foundation’s Annual Gala, on Saturday, November 9, in downtown Greensboro. “Join us as we officially welcome Chris to our Equality NC family and come together as a unified community to prepare for the road ahead.”
Sgro is a graduate of American University in Washington, D.C. He lives in Greensboro, N.C. with his partner, Ryan.