The Dallas Pride Board of Directors announces that Sherrell Cross has been chosen as the organization’s new executive director. Cross brings a strong background in LGBTQ advocacy and leadership as well as experience and passion to her new role, Dallas Pride officials said, all of which will help Dallas Pride “pursue its mission of strengthening, supporting and celebrating the LGBTQ community by creating events and initiatives that foster connections between members of the community, allies and supporters.”
The Dallas Pride board is “confident that Cross’s vision and leadership will help the organization reach new heights in promoting LGBTQ rights and fostering unity within the community,” according to a press release announcing the decision.
Board President Frank Holland said, “We are delighted to welcome Sherrell Cross as our organization’s new executive director. Her deep commitment to our mission and her impressive track record make her the ideal leader to guide Dallas Pride into a bright and inclusive future.”
Cross has “an impressive track record of dedication to LGBTQ causes,” the press release noted, calling her “a tireless advocate for equality and inclusion” who “has served in key leadership roles within local LGBTQ organizations.”
Cross was the assistant executive director of Real Live Connection for six years, helping grow that organization within Dallas Pride’s Teen Pride Zone, increasing attendance and sponsorship growth each year. She has also served on the leadership board of Lambda Legal, volunteered with Promise House, hosted Thanksgiving meals for Real Live Connection and partnered with Love 2 Give to lead water drives for the homeless during summer months.
“Her commitment to fostering diversity and creating safe, inclusive spaces aligns perfectly with the mission of Dallas Pride,” the press release said.
As executive director, Cross will oversee all aspects of Dallas Pride’s operations, including event planning, community outreach and fundraising. She will work closely with the board of directors and volunteers to “continue the organization’s tradition of hosting vibrant and impactful Pride events that celebrate diversity and promote acceptance,” the press release said.
Cross said she is “honored to lead Dallas Pride and build upon the incredible work of this organization.
“Pride is not just a celebration,” she continued. “It’s a vital platform for advancing LGBTQ rights and making our community’s voices heard. I am excited to work alongside our dedicated team to create memorable and meaningful Pride experiences for all.”
Cross replaces former executive director Jason Turnbow, who took over the role in late 2019 following the retirement of longtime executive director Michael Doughman and who oversaw Dallas Pride’s move from September in Oak Lawn to June in Fair Park. Longtime community leader Chris Bengston served as interim director between Turnbow stepping down earlier this year and Cross’ recent appointment.
Watch for a full feature profiling Cross and her work in the community in the Oct. 6 issue of Dallas Voice.