“I started volunteering with KCCI in February 2016 after moving to the Kansas City area. Through previous work and volunteer activities, I have had experience working with nonprofits and grant writing. I am glad to be given the opportunity to utilize these skills with KCCI for the benefit of Kansas City’s LGBT community.
I enjoy supporting local KC businesses including our soccer team, Sporting KC. I am on the board of a literacy organization, Pages and Chapter, and also volunteer for the Kansas City CARE Clinic and the World War 1 Museum and Memorial. I am also involved with my local church, Church of the Resurrection.
I currently reside in the Union Hill neighborhood of Kansas City, Missouri.”
“I came out in high school and had the more accepting home life. I found the Kansas City Center for Inclusion while my wife and I were looking for somewhere to donate that really told our story. I feel like KCCI does that in more than one way. My background includes having retail experience and currently working in corporate America. In our spare time, my wife and I are currently building their own company so we can have both time and money to give back to the community.
My interests include musicals, reading personal development books, music and spending time with their our fur babies.
My wife and I have been married since April of 2016 and currently live in Kansas City Missouri with our three dogs, Emma, Duke, and Diamond.”
Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer
“When I first came out as a lesbian, I was a junior in high school. I faced my share of struggles and family issues, I’ve learned to love who I am and encourage others to do the same. Since my high school days, I’ve thrived in Corporate America and I now work as a Production Manager at a Design Company. My wife, Jackie, and I also own our own business as well.
We got involved with the Center because we wanted to give back to the community.
My interest include watching baseball games, hockey games, being with family, reading, watching the latest movies and traveling.”
Director of Marketing and Technology
“I helped to found the Kansas City Bear Mafia, a 501(c)3 organization, which kindled my passion for building change. I have happily accepted a position to join the Center for Inclusion as a board member to do whatever I can to make my community stronger.
I grew up in Lawrence, Kansas and currently reside in the Waldo Neighborhood of KCMO with my partner, Matt, and our two dogs, Chewie and Willow.”
Bruce Winter a/k/a Melinda Ryder
“I have been a part of the Kansas City LGBT community since 1976 and have been entertaining KC audiences as a female impersonator for over 40 years. I have been involved with fundraising and community outreach for many years. When I learned about an LGBT Community Center coming to our city I knew that I wanted to be a part of it.
I enjoy classic movies, biographies, attending live theater, and enjoy the experience of watching a movie in a theater on the big screen. I am also interested in local history and architecture.”
“When I first came out in the early 2000’s, I had difficulty connecting with the LGBT Community because there really wasn’t a “Place” to go to talk to anyone or connect with others in the community other than bars. After my wife Dana and I heard about plans to open an LGBT Community Center, we both knew we wanted to be a part of that. My business and project management skill sets came in handy and in early 2011 we started working with the community center. Being involved from before we even had a location, to learning how to lay carpet and tile, and watching the Center grow into an integral organization within the community 5 years later has been extremely rewarding. It’s been a labor of love via literal blood, sweat, and tears. The Center has helped SO many people get through some of the worst times of their lives and seeing them NOW as happy and self confident members of the community still brings me to tears. It’s been a true blessing to be a part of this. There’s always more work to do and someone out there who we can help.
I am an avid Trivia fan, I’ve been a faithful Royals fan for 40+ years, I enjoy community service, crafting, scrapbooking, art, and making memories with friends and family.
Dana and I married in 2010, together we have 3 children (the youngest is a Senior in High School, and I have 2 adorable Grandchildren (yes, I’m biased but what Grandmother isn’t?) We all live in Lee’s Summit, which we’ve learned is a quietly Gay Mecca in the Metro.”
“Over the past few years I have been able to work with the Kansas City Center for Inclusion in many capacities. Seeing their commitment and hard work for our Kansas City LGBT organization is awe-inspiring. To be able to assist them in their continued efforts for our community is a privilege.
I am a huge comic book/ sci-fi movie/ pop culture geek. My husband and I travel when we can. Trying something new is a personal mantra.
I was born and raised in Kansas City, MO. I currently live in Prairie Village, KS with my husband Greg and our dog, Peeve.”
“I’ve been in the communications field since I started working in radio as a junior-high student. I believe there’s no better way to serve your community than to be part of a group such as the Center for Inclusion. I enjoy working on behind-the-scenes projects in media, organizing, user experience and public relations.
I’m a designer and a UX researcher right now, but I’ve worked in radio, television, cable, and internet companies in the past. Give me something to explain and I’ll do my best to help it make sense to the community!
I have two grown sons, and live with my husband John and four cats in midtown Kansas City. On the weekends you’ll find me editing video or shooting photos around town, doing some design work, or hanging out with friends in Westport. I enjoy anything that involves technology and people! I’m pursuing my master’s degree in interaction and user experience design at the University of Kansas, and work full-time with a team of user experience researchers and designers by day.
It’s rewarding to volunteer with the Center for Inclusion, and to be a vital part of our diverse community.”
Board Member – Events Coordinator
Over the course of the last 7 years, I have been slowly working towards a unified LGBTQIA community. It has always been my dream to see our community work as one. The mission of the Kansas City Center for Inclusion aligns with my goals for our community, which is to offer a loving heart, a warm embrace, and a safe space for every member of, and supporter of, our community.