The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore

The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore (CBE-B), an international Black LGBT organization, advocates and provides network services for Black Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people and their allies in the Baltimore Metropolitan Area.

Vision

To eradicate social inequality of Black LGBT persons.

Mission

To improve the well-being and quality of life for Black LGBT individuals and their allies by setting a standard of excellence in the Black LGBT community through health and wellness, spiritual and economic empowerment, social justice, and coalition building.

Board

Executive Committee

Carlton R. SmithCarlton R. Smith – Executive Director & Founder

Carton R. Smith has worked in LGBT issues for many years. He has served on various committees providing outreach, leadership and representing the needs of LGBT people at the local, state and federal levels. Carlton places emphasis on the African American LGBT community, specifically men who have sex with men (MSM). He is the community co-chair of the MSM Response Team convened by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and a member of Maryland Black Family Alliance, the National Black Gay Men’s Advocacy Coalition and the National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA), to name a few. He is the former vice president of the GLCCB (Gay & Lesbian Community Center of Baltimore. He is an ordained deacon with UNITY Fellowship Church of Baltimore. He is one of the founding members of The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore, under the membership of the national organization, The Center for Black Equity (CBE), now in its 12th year of operation.

Contact Carlton: president@centerforblackequitybaltimore.com or exec.director@centerforblackequity.com

. Myers-ClemonsKevin T. Myers-Clemons – Chairman & Founder

Kevin T. Clemons has worked as an activist/advocate on behalf of people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS since 1985. He has provided prevention education, HIV counseling & testing and consultation at the local, state and federal level. He served as the Community AIDS coordinator for the Baltimore City Health Department for 13 years. He also provided oversight to 20 HIV counseling and testing sites in Baltimore, served as a founder and facilitator of “Positive Power,” a support group for Black men who have sex with men (MSM), and in the 1990’s was one of the co-founders of M.O.C.A.A. (Men of Color Against AIDS). Kevin is one of the founders of The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore, which is in its 12th year as one of the cities under the leadership of our national organization, the Center of Black Equity. He says, “I have been involved with my AALGBT community for almost 30 years … it’s a calling!”

Contact Kevin Email: chairman@centerforblackequitybaltimore.com

Kim H. WalkerKim H. Walker – Treasurer

Native Chicagoan Kim H. Walker has been the Vocalist for the Kevin Robinson Ensemble and Rapture. Kim is licensed through the United Centers for Spiritual Living as a Spiritual Practitioner and is Owner & Principal Accountant of Certified Business Services, LLC, providing accounting, business and tax services in the Baltimore/DC area. Kim says, “I joined The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore to aide in its leadership, developing and maintaining fiscal responsibility, tax compliance, and to aide in fostering greater partnerships throughout the state of Maryland.”

Contact Kim: treasurer@centerforblackequitybaltimore.com

Members-At-Large
Leroy Burgess – Co-Founder
D. Doreion Colter
Jamal Hailey
Carrie Hiers

Our History

Over the last 12 years The Center for Black Equity-Baltimore’s ongoing commitment to the Black LGBT community and its allies, has taken the form of many creative efforts and successes as we continue to enhance the standard of excellence by addressing issues that impact on our community: health & wellness, spiritual and economic empowerment, social justice and coalition building. A lot of it has been achieved through ongoing efforts throughout the year that leads up to our annual Black Pride Celebration, Baltimore Black Pride (BBP). To highlight a few, in 2007, our theme “Solidarity…We as One” was really focusing our attention and efforts on generating more community involvement. Pride events were held over the weekend of October 5 through 7, and began with our Friday night Meet & Greet held at our host hotel, the Sheraton Baltimore Center City. On Saturday, we held several workshops, the Teen and Youth Summit and an Open Mike Town Hall meeting. The goal of these activities was to obtain an assessment (through evaluations) of major areas of need within our community, especially as related to health and well-being. We have used the information from this assessment to create issue-responsive events and activities throughout the year, with the intent of raising our individual and collective consciousness and establish responsibility for our community. On Saturday evening,  we held our annual Cultural Affair and fundraiser at the Eubie Blake National Jazz Institute and Cultural Center. During the evening we had live jazz and a fashion show hosted by Baltimore’s own legendary Travis Winkey. We also presented our “Icons We Love” awards to deserving persons and agencies nominated by the community for the work and contributions they have made to improve the quality of life within our Black LGBTQ-SGL community. And we wrapped up on Sunday, October 7 with our Fall Festival and Block Party as our celebration of “Solidarity…We as One.”

2008 brought a new vision for our country with the election of Barrack Obama, the country’s first African-American president. This not only instilled hope for the country, but for a lot of African-Americans within our communities. BBP continued to support and address issues from the community. It also worked in conjunction with other gay and allied agencies that support BBP and the Black LGBTQ-SGL community. Our October celebration continued to offer our Friday night kick-off community and BBP Meet & Greet; Saturday morning workshops and our annual Saturday evening Cultural Affair and fundraiser, and; the Sunday Fall Festival and Block Party, which remains our most well-attended event over the course of the weekend, annually drawing over 3,000 people.

BBP kept its overall format of the 2009 BBP the same. We had a great Friday night Meet & Greet held at Club Bunns, followed on Saturday evening with the Cultural Affair held at the Eubie Blake National Jazz Institute and Cultural Center, and the Sunday Fall Festival and Block Party at Club Bunns with attendance well over 4,000. In 2009, we decided to have fewer workshops on Saturday. Workshop participation continues to be rather low, even with giving the youth component over to some of the up and coming youth leaders in our community to organize and promote. We hope that we will have greater attendance of these important workshops in the coming years.

In 2010 we gathered to “Embrace and Celebrate Diversity.” We chose this theme with the understanding that we were at a place in our journey where the survival of our organization and the community which we serve must become everyone’s responsibility. Our theme helped focus us on addressing some of the hard work of community building (ensuring equity and access to everyone in our community), and some of the rewards (celebrating those achievements that keep us going).

In 2011, we renewed our hope and expectation for greater achievements in equality, freedom and social justice for our community under the theme of “I Was Born This Way: X-pression of Yo-self.” Our theme was chosen to reflect our commitment to creating space for everyone in our community to work for and enjoy the rewards of these gains. I Was Born This Way: X-pression of Yo-self was a call to be who you are, and to acknowledge and respect others for who they are. And to come together as a community with a sense of responsibility for ourselves and each other. Our celebration was held October 4 through 7 and included our A-List Party; a special screening of the film,  “Blueprint,” about coming out and young love; two youth-focused town hall meetings that focused on health, youth empowerment and showcasing the talents of local youth; the Black Out Party; a Town Hall meeting that focused on 30 Years of AIDS; the 9th Annual Cultural Affair; After Party at Club Paradox; a Sunday morning service and the Fall Festival. It was quite a packed week and our community turned out by the thousands to support!

2012 marked the 10-year-anniversary of Baltimore Black Pride. The theme was “Legacy: Celebrating HerStory & HiStory,” and the celebration lasted October 1 through 7. Events included everything from workshops and spiritual services to fashion shows and happy hours. The Black Pride celebration culminated with the annual ICONS We Love Awards Gala.

In celebration of another year and marking prominent changes, Baltimore Black Pride brought presented “A New Era: Evolution 2013”.  We celebrated from October 7 through 13 with a wide range of events and activities for everyone within the community. It was all about the innovation to take BBP to a new era with dedication and inspiration, which lead to BBP re-launching and re-branding itself — The Center for Black-Baltimore in 2014.

Upcoming Events

  • “The New Black” Screening Guest Panelist – Wednesday, June 18
  • Baltimore Black Pride 2014: I AM BLACK POWER – Tuesday, Oct. 10 – Sunday, Oct. 12

Past Events

  • Sankofa Men’s Conference at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing
  • Wild With Happy- Center Stage
  • Baltimore Gay Pride (Mount Royal Station) – Saturday, June 14–15

Contact CBE-B