HOUSTON - Mayor Sylvester Turner has created an LGBT Advisory Board of 49 people, in a symbolic nod to the 49 victims in the Orlando shooting.
The board consists of a diverse group to represent Houston's LGBT community.
The racial makeup of the board is 21 Anglos, 12 African Americans, 13 Hispanics and three Asians. There are 26 gays, 13 lesbians, eight transgender people including two intersex, one bisexual and one parent of a transgender child. The gender breakdown is 21 females and 28 males.
“It was important to me to make this announcement before the end of Pride Month,” said Mayor Turner. "However, let me be clear, our support for the LGBT community is not ending. We are standing with Orlando today and we will be standing with them tomorrow. In Houston, we fight hate with love and inclusion. There is much work to be done and I can’t wait to get going.”
The board will serve as a link between the mayor's office and the LGBT community, providing advice and recommendations on relevant issues.
Due to the board’s size, the mayor says there will be a committee structure. The board chair and co-chair are Lou Weaver and Melanie Pang, respectively.
Weaver is with Equality Texas and Pang works for the Salvation Army.
Below is the list of other board members:
Dee Dee Watters
Lily Pando (15-year-old who will serve as an honorary member)
R. Aaron Flores
T. Ray Purser
Tamira "Augie" Agustine