Emerging Leaders Board June Speaker Series: From Bayard, Baldwin & Beyond: Exploring Black gay liberation and pride

Wednesday, June 23, 2021 at 6:45pm EST via Zoom

Join us at 6:45pm for virtual networking and at 7:00pm for the panel discussion with a post-event Q&A session.

Registration is free – Zoom login information for the event will be emailed in the registration confirmation.

A virtual panel discussion featuring the following panelists whose work focuses on the health and well-being of gay and queer Black men :

Deion Hawkins, PhD, Assistant Professor of Argumentation & Advocacy, Director of Debate, Department of Communication Studies, Emerson College 

Charles Stephens, Founder and Executive Director of the Counter Narrative Project. Charles Stephens is the Founder and Executive Director of the Counter Narrative Project (CNP). He is committed to working at the intersection of narrative shift and social change. Charles served as the Conference Organizer for the historic 2014 conference “Whose Beloved Community Black Civil and LGBT Rights” at Emory University. He also led the innovative social marketing campaign “From Where I Stand” for AID Atlanta. The anthology he co-edited “Black Gay Genius,” was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. Charles has received the Georgia State University College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Alumni Award and been a CDC Institute for HIV Prevention Leadership Fellow, an Arcus Foundation Executive Director Fellow, and a Rockwood Leader in the HIV movement fellow. Currently, he is also a member of the Alliance Theatre Advisory Board and the Historic Atlanta LGBT Committee. His writings have appeared in the AJC, Atlanta Magazine, and Creative Loafing. He previously wrote a column for Advocate magazine and Georgia Voice focused on Black LGBTQ+ politics and culture. 


DaShawn Usher, Founder and Executive Director of Mobilizing Our Brothers InitiativeAssociate Director, Communities of Color, GLAAD

Pronouns: He, Him, His


Writer, Executive Producer, Community Mobilizer, and Culture Curator, DaShawn Usher hails from the deep south of the Bronx, New York. A true New York City native with Southern roots he fostered during college while in Tennessee. Since then, DaShawn has gone on to be an award-winning advocate, published researcher and celebrated leader with the LGBTQ+ and HIV prevention field. Having cultivated more than 14 years of extensive experience in research, program development and design, health communications, and campaign development and implementation, he was featured in OUT magazine’s OUT 100 list for his efforts. DaShawn currently serves as the Associate Director, Communities of Color at GLAAD, the world’s largest LGBTQ+ media advocacy organization, where he is responsible for managing multiple program grants totaling over $15 million. He is the Founder and Executive Director of Mobilizing Our Brothers Initiative (MOBI), a series of curated social connectivity programming for Black gay and queer people of color to see their holistic self while promoting community, wellness, and personal development. Which to date has secured over $1 million in direct programming funding. MOBI’s website has received over 40,000 views with its social and digital efforts garnering over 2 million impressions while reaching over 800,000 people in 2020. Continuing to make waves in Hollywood, DaShawn was selected and completed the inaugural Ben the Writers Room, a virtual TV pilot and feature film writing workshop for underrepresented writers of color and LGBTQ+ storytellers shepherded by writer, producer, and showrunner Ben Cory Jones.


Social Media Handles: @dashawnusher across all platforms (FB, IG, Twitter, and LinkedIn)



Marvell L Terry II, Program Manager at Aids United: Marvell L. Terry II is the founding principal for Netherwood Consulting Group, a social impact consulting group designed to help build strategy and strength among community, institutions, and individuals. Terry is also the Founder of The Red Door Foundation and the annual Saving Ourselves Symposium, a convening for black LGBTQ living in the South on health, wellness, and social justice.  Finally Marvell works as the Senior Program Manager for the Southern HIV Impact Fund at AIDS United and serve as a member of HIV Racial Justice Now Network.


Torrian Baskerville, Senior Associate, NASTAD, Prevention Team: Torrian L Baskerville is a Black Queer advocate, activist, and agent of change. His deep love for social service and relentless drive to reduce health disparities, increase visibility and improve health equity for marginalized populations–especially youth and young adults, persons living with HIV, and Black and Latinx men who have sex with men–comes as a result of his own story. With over ten years of experience working in public health education and service provision, Torrian is well-versed in understanding the challenges, needs, and nuances of the LGBTQ community– and uses both his professional and personal experiences to bridge the gap between lawmakers, service providers, and the community. Currently, Torrian is a senior associate on the Prevention team at the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD). He leads the Capacity Building Assistance (CBA) work relative to HIV stigma, cultural responsiveness, and gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (GBM). In addition, he provides technical assistance (TA) to community-based organizations (CBOs) in the South, and, with a small team, he works on the implementation of the CBO Outreach Initiative. Throughout his career, Torrian has worked with various public and private entities, such as the NJ Department of Child Protection & Permanency, Gilead Sciences, The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries, Rutgers University: New Jersey Medical School, and the Georgia Department of Health - providing HIV education, as well as, consultation on the engagement, recruitment, and retention of and service provision for gay and bisexual youth and young adults of color. He was featured in several social campaigns, including Gilead Sciences' "#SpreadFactsNotFear," as well as GLAAD's "Queer Black History Month: Legacy Series,"—because of his work within the LGBTQ community, he was analogized to the legacy of prominent queer civil rights activist and organizer Bayard Rustin.


Additionally, Torrian currently serves as Executive Board Chairman of The Door: Adolescent Health Center in New York City. He is presently a student of Interdisciplinary Studies concentration in Social Justice in Healthcare Management at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst.


We look forward to having you join us!

Email Amanda McKenney at amckenney@bhchp.org with event related questions.