Our Mission & History
The LGBT Resource Center provides support, education, and advocacy regarding sexual orientation and gender identity for the UC Riverside campus community.
Additional Mission Statements We Follow
- Ethnic and Gender Offices and Programs Mission Statement
- Division of Student Affairs Mission Statement
- University of California Riverside Mission Statement
We Like to Break Ground — Milestones of Pride
We made history as the first campus in California to have a professionally-staffed LGBT resource office when our doors opened in 1993. In 1996, we became the first campus in California to offer an LGBT studies minor. In 2005, we were the first public university in the nation to offer a gender-neutral housing option to all students. Today we continue our commitment to innovation and support.
A Center is Born
Before we had a center, LGBT activism had long had a home on UCR’s campus. Groups like Queer Alliance and activists like Kalyn Smith-Tranquil’son were already helping to give the LGBT community a voice.
The idea of founding an official LGBT Resource Center started to take shape in 1992, when it became the primary goal of the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on the Status of LGBT's (CAC). This committee was (and is) comprised of UCR staff, faculty and students (LGBT and allies).
The CAC first sought out a physical meeting space for LGBT students and allies, but available rooms were scarce. As a result, the committee met with Executive Vice Chancellor Everly B. Fleischer who, with the support of Chancellor Rosemary S.J. Schraer, agreed to provide a space on campus.
The first available space was an abandoned corridor in a residence hall. Meetings were held in the space, but it wasn't yet staffed, nor was it a fully functioning center.
In 1993, the CAC found a new home for the center in the Commons, and, at the same time, searched for a director. Steven Shum was selected and became our first director. With the new space and director secured, the official LGBT Resource Center was born!
Location and Partners
The center’s first 245-square-foot home in the Commons was located at 228 Costo Hall, an office space between Chicano Student Programs and Native American Student Programs. That space is now the Meditation Room. The center then moved to 250 Costo Hall (and more than doubled in size) in 1995. In 2007, the center moved to its current location at 245 Costo Hall, where it nearly doubled in size again. As our programs and impact grew, so did our center!
Throughout the campaign to establish the center, the CAC received support from both the Women's Resource Center and The Commons Board.
Our students wanted an LGBT resource center at UCR, and they, the CAC, and all of their partners, made sure it happened.
Since our doors first opened nearly thirty years ago, we have developed model programs and services, seen amazing student organizations grow, and made a difference with our valuable outreach and events.
As we move toward new goals, we continue our work to ensure that the LGBTQ+ and allies community has a voice, that voice is heard, and that the result is continual positive change that benefits everyone at UCR and beyond.
Our Staffing History
- 1993 - Director Steven Shum is hired as a part-time, nine-month Student Affairs Officer (SAO) I.
- 1996 - Student staff keep the center open during summer and fall.
- 1997 - Director Maggie Hawkins is hired as a full-time, 11-month SAO II.
- 1999 - Office Manager Mark Dunn is hired as a part-time, nine-month senior clerk/secretary. In 2007, Mark Dunn’s duties are split 50/50 between the LGBTRC and the Women's Resource Center and the position becomes a full-time, 11-month administrative assistant III at the LGBTRC. The position moves to 12 months, and Mark's job title changes to the Budget, Personnel, & Program Assistant as his responsibilities increase.
- 2000 - Director Nancy Tubbs is hired in January 2000 as a full-time, 11-month SAO III. Later, she becomes a full-time, 12-month SAO IV. In 2016, CareerTracks changes the position to a Student Life Development Supervisor 1. In 2019, the position is reclassified to a Student Life Development Supervisor 2.
- 2002 - Assistant Director Christina Gonzalez is hired as a full-time, nine-month SAO I with temporary funds.
- 2003 - Program Coordinators Eli Green and Eric Peterson are hired in 2003 as part-time, temporary SAO I’s.
- 2004 - Assistant Director Jami Grosser is hired as a full-time, 12-month SAO I. The position later becomes a full-time, 12 month SAO II.
- 2008 - Toi Thibodeaux is hired as a temporary, full-time SAO I. In 2009, Toi Thibodeaux becomes a full-time, 12-month SAO II. Toi's title changes from Assistant Director to Program Coordinator to Assistant Director based on divisional standards. In 2016, CareerTracks changes the position to a Student Life Development Specialist 3 classification. In 2019, the position is reclassified as a Student Life Development Specialist 4.
- 2014 - Sy Simms is hired with temporary funding as a full-time SAO I.
- 2015 - Megan Rush is hired with temporary funds as a full-time SAO I Program Coordinator. In 2016, permanent funding is awarded for the position, and CareerTracks changes the position to a Student Life Development Specialist 1. In 2018, the position is reclassified as a Student Life Development Specialist 2.