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Building Bridges: How to Create an LGBTQ+ Liaison Program      

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Friday, June 21, 2024 at 2:00 PM
Free virtual webinar
In honor of Pride Month, the National Law Enforcement Museum will host a program that examines the impact of LGBTQIA+ Liaison programs in local police departments around the country. LGBTQIA+ Liaisons serve law enforcement agencies by providing a source of information and expertise about LGBTQ+ people and the needs of the community, and have proved effective in in creating a relationship and building trust between law enforcement and local LGBTQ+ communities, yet many departments in the United States still don’t have an LGBTQIA+ Liaison program.
This public program will dive into the benefits of having LGBTQIA+ Liaisons in local departments for both officers in the department and the communities that they serve, and it will provide a roadmap for local departments to create an LGBTQIA+ Liaison program in their communities. 
Moderator:
  • Greg Miraglia, Founder, Out to Protect
Panelists:
  • Janae Draper, Officer, Neighborhood Engagement Team, Waco Police Department (TX)
  • Andrea Montanez, Senior Racial Equity, LGBTQ+, and Immigration Organizer, Hope CommUNITY Center
  • Jennifer Pritchard, Rohnert Park Police Department (CA)
  • Brandon Ragan, Orange County Sheriff’s Office
  • Kevin Turner, South Fulton Police Department (GA)
  • Maria Mendoza, Officer, Metropolitan Police Department (DC)

Moderator

Greg Miraglia

Founder, Out to Protect

Greg Miraglia is an LGBT activist, college professor of LGBT studies and criminal justice, author, radio host and producer, and  professional speaker. He has a Master’s Degree in Education, a Bachelor’s Degree in Business, and is a graduate of the California Commission On Peace Officer Standards and Training Master Instructor Development Program.

Mr. Miraglia is a Dean Emeritus at Napa Valley College and currently serves as the program coordinator for Criminal Justice Education and Training and LGBT Studies.  He is also a part time member of the faculty at City College of San Francisco and Santa Rosa Junior College.  Mr. Miraglia teaches six different LGBT studies courses and a number of criminal justice classes including introduction to administration of justice, community policing, 21st century policing, criminal law, and criminal procedures.

Mr. Miraglia serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Matthew Shepard Foundation and is also a radio program host and producer on Outbeat Radio, a weekly LGBT program on KRCB Radio. In 2023, he was appointed an Ambassador for the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund and Museum.

Participants

Janae Draper

Officer, Neighborhood Engagement Team, Waco Police Department (TX)

Officer Draper has worked for the Waco Police Department since 2016. She started her career on patrol, spending her time serving the South Waco Community for five years.

In 2022, Officer Draper moved to a newly formed unit, the Neighborhood Engagement Team (NET). There she works closely with 5 different neighborhoods focusing on promoting positive community relations and engagement utilizing the TREEAT model, as well as promoting awareness on multiple topics.

She holds an Advanced Peace Officer Certification from TCOLE and is an ALERRT C.R.A.S.E Instructor, Basic Instructor, Waco PD Defensive Tactics Instructor, and a Certified Crime Prevention Specialist. She also is a member of The National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives (NAWLEE), Central Texas Crime Prevention Association, and Out to Protect LGBT Law Enforcement Academy Alumni.

In the summer of 2023, Officer Draper was asked to become the LGBTQ+ Liaison for Waco Police Department. Since then, she has devoted much of her time working to establish an effective and sustainable LGBTQ+ Liaison program, as well as helping to create an internal source of guidance and support for Waco Police employees on LGBTQ+ matters.

Her goal is to ultimately help strengthen and enhance relations with law enforcement agencies all over the country and their LGBTQ+ communities.

Maria Mendoza

Officer, Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), Washington, D.C.

Officer Maria Mendoza, was born in Mexico and immigrated to the United States at the age 11, settling in a small town called Immokalee, Florida. Maria graduated from Immokalee High School and continued her studies at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) where she .  earned her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice. After graduation, she worked as a Juvenile Probation Officer for two years.  

In 2016, Maria decided to applied to become a Police Officer at the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) in Washington, DC.  She began her MPD career at the Sixth District and was assigned there in Patrol for 7 years. Following my years in patrol, she was given the opportunity to become part of the Co-Response Team (COR) for eight months. In February 2024, Officer Mendoza joined the agency’s LGBT Liaison Unit. Officer Mendoza is honored to be able to serve my community with MPD, and feels that in her role, she plays a critical role in breaching the gap between the community and law enforcement. 

Andrea Montanez

Senior Racial Equity, LGBTQ+, and Immigration Organizer, Hope CommUNITY Center

Andrea Montanez is a long-standing community advocate. She is a proud transgender woman, Columbian immigrant, and a dynamic leader with over a decade of experience working with LGBTQIA+ communities. Andrea serves as the Senior Racial Equity, LGBTQ+ and Immigration Organizer for HopeCommUNITY Center in Orlando, Florida and her role is to educate and bring visibility to communities on the intersections of being an immigrant and transgender. In this role, Andrea leads all programming related to LGBTQ issues, including clinical and behavioral health programming, pride events, and advocacy initiatives.  

Additionally, Andrea is the co-founder of the Queer and Transgender Immigrants (QT Immigrants) Group, a grassroots group focused on support for the queer and transgender immigrant community. She also serves on the boards of numerous community-based organizations across the country, all aimed at serving systematically and structurally excluded populations. 

Andrea also boasts a past career in Law Enforcement. While in Columbia, Andrea served as a Detective for the Interpol branch of the DAS-Columbia and then in the United States, she spent a decade serving as a Supervisory Transportation Security Officer for TSA-DHS. 

Jennifer Pritchard

Rohnert Park Police Department (CA)

“Jennifer Parsons-Pritchard –“J.P.” has dedicated nine years to the public safety industry, serving as the Community Engagement Liaison and Public Information Officer at both the Petaluma Police Department and the Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety. Utilizing social media and forging community partnerships, she champions crime prevention awareness.

With a Master’s degree in Education focusing on media literacy, J.P. understands the profound impact of equipping communities with tools and resources so they may advocate for their own safety.  Throughout her career, she has actively participated in various boards, including Verity’s Rape Crisis Trauma and Healing Center and Girls on the Run. Currently, she serves as the Rohnert Park DPS representative on the Sonoma County Human Trafficking Task Force. As the LGBTQIA+ liaison for Rohnert Park DPS, she is committed to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging initiatives within her agency. Her efforts helped the Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety become the first Law enforcement agency in California to receive full P.O.S.T. certified LGBT accreditation.

J.P. spearheaded the SAFE SPACE anti-hate campaign at both first responder agencies, ensuring all community members felt protected and served regardless of demographics. She has also shared her expertise in the communications field as a guest speaker at the NAMLE conference in Los Angeles and through interviews on TV and radio stations, amplifying public safety awareness. Her mission in the first responder field is to empower individuals to actively participate in protecting their communities through policy change, programming, and educational outreach.

Brandon Ragan

Orange County Sheriff’s Office

Lieutenant Brandon Ragan grew up in Orlando and has worked at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office since 2003.  He has worked as a patrol deputy, a Sergeant for School Resource Officers, Criminal Investigations, and Watch Command.  He is currently assigned to the Strategic Communications Section. Lt. Ragan has a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration and a Masters in Leadership and Management. He is the lead LGBTQ+ liaison for his agency and serves as the Advisor to the President for the Gay Officers Action League of Central Florida.  

Kevin Turner

South Fulton Police Department (GA)

Kevin Turner is a forward-thinking law enforcement professional who has a vision for his own future and the future of society, guided by a strong sense of empathy and fairness. Kevin is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, but moved to the Atlanta Metropolitan area in 2015. Since 2020, he has served with the City of South Fulton (GA) Police Department, and was inspired to join the field of law enforcement to make a difference in his community. He aims to make a difference one community interaction at a time. While working in recruitment, Kevin’s passion for advocating for his fellow community members was recognized by his lieutenant, and he was assigned as a subject matter expert on diversity. In this role, it became apparent to Officer Turner that the agency was in need of an advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community both within the agency and out in the community. With the support of the South Fulton PD’s command staff and chief of police, Turner was appointed as the agency’s first ever LGBTQIA+ Law Enforcement Liaison. 

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Date And Time

Jun 21, 2024 @ 02:00 PM to
Jun 22, 2024 @ 03:30 PM
 

Location

Online Event
 

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