Community News

New interim chair for LGBT Switchboard

Besi Besemar May 31, 2013

Maria Antoniou
Maria Antoniou

Maria Antoniou has been appointed Interim Chair of Brighton & Hove LGBT Switchboard, replacing Mark Elsworth who stepped down in May after 4 years in the role.

Maria has served on Switchboard’s Management Board for the past year and was asked to step up until a permanent Chair is recruited. She has professional experience in charity fundraising, along with a PhD in Women’s Studies and a background in university lecturing and academic research.

Maria says:

“I’m pleased to accept this challenge. This is a significant time for Switchboard as we raise funds to strengthen our Counselling and Helpline services. We have also taken on sole ownership of the LGBT Health & Inclusion Project (LGBT HIP), previously jointly managed with the Terrence Higgins Trust. Over the coming year, LGBT HIP will be carrying out important work, including community engagement relating Brighton & Hove Council’s implementation of the trans equality scrutiny recommendations; and partnership work with other agencies to engage marginalised LGBT communities including BME people, older people, disabled people and carers. I look forward to working with the volunteers, staff and Board at Switchboard to create a successful and responsive organisation.”

Mark Elsworth
Mark Elsworth

Mark Elsworth says:

“Chairing Switchboard has been an interesting and challenging experience for me and I’m now delighted to hand over to Maria who will, initially, take the role for three months. I know that with her calm leadership abilities, Switchboard is in good hands.”