Networking Activities Will Help Introduce Yale’s Four Affinity Groups to Campus Community

April 13, 2009

Yale’s four “affinity groups” will host networking activities this spring.

An affinity group brings together Yale faculty and staff who share interests, issues, and a common bond or background, and who can offer support for each other.

The affinity group program was established by the Human Resources Department’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion with the goal of improving professional development, enhancing the workplace, and strengthening community awareness and involvement. The affinity groups also give staff the opportunity to work collaboratively with University leadership to create an environment of inclusion while increasing representation in various leadership positions across the University.

Yale’s affinity groups currently include Asian Network @ Yale, the Yale African American Affinity group, the Yale Latino Networking Group, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Queer group. For more information about their missions, visit the website at

A description of their upcoming activities follows:

Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ)

The newest of Yale’s affinity group’s seeks “to build a more welcoming and respectful campus community for LGBTQ individuals and their allies.”

It was created with the help of Maria Trumpler, director of the Office of LGBTQ Resources, who has served as special adviser to the deans for LGBTQ issues since 2006 and is senior lecturer and director of undergraduate studies in the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program.

“I’m looking forward to making the group a valued and supportive resource here at Yale,” she says. “It will fill a need for the LGBTQ community, and I hope it will make the community’s Yale life more rewarding and vibrant.” In conjunction with Trumpler’s office, the group launched a speaker series in January.

The first-ever LGBTQ Reunion at Yale will be held Thursday-Sunday, April 23-26. The event will celebrate the 25th anniversary of GALA, the educational and cultural organization that promotes the well-being and betterment of the University’s LGBTQ community. The weekend will open at 8 p.m. on Thursday with a Rufus Wainwright concert in Woolsey Hall, corner of College and Grove streets. Tickets are $50; $25 for students. All proceeds will benefit the AIDS Project New Haven and the Connecticut affiliate of the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network (GLSEN). The reunion’s keynote speakers will be Bruce Cohen, producer of the Academy Award-winning films “American Beauty” and “Milk,” and Eliza Byard, executive director of GLSEN. For concert ticket information and more, go to

The group members will also be taking part in two upcoming events: the fifth annual AIDS Walk New Haven and AIDS Project New Haven’s third annual Dining Out for Life.

AIDS Walk New Haven is led by students from Yale and other local colleges in conjunction with city groups. It will begin at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 26, on the New Haven Green. The Office of Diversity and Inclusion is sponsoring a team for Yale family and friends. To participate, contact Calvin Haney, coordinator, at or call (203) 436-9008.

Restaurants participating in the AIDS Project New Haven’s third annual Dining Out for Life, to be held on Thursday, April 30, donate at least 25% of the patrons’ check to support the project’s work. For more information, visit

Yale African American Affinity Group (YAAA)

As part of its ongoing speakers series, the YAAA will host a talk with Tony Brown, author of “What Mama Taught Me” and host of “Tony Brown’s Journal,” the longest-running PBS series and the nation’s oldest African-American television series.

“Tony Brown’s lecture promises to be introspectively challenging and uplifting,” says Kandice Whitaker-Taylor, training specialist in Patient Financial Services and co-chair of the event. “His latest book represents empowerment that transcends the inconsequential impact of a person’s race.”

Brown’s talk will take place 5-6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 30, in the Afro-American Cultural Center, 211 Park St. A reception will follow, featuring the artwork of dining hall worker Pamela Dear.

For more information about the talk, send e-mail to

Asian Network @ Yale (ANY)

ANY will host a spring social networking event on Wednesday, May 6, 4-7 p.m. in Horchow Hall, 55 Hillhouse Ave.

The group held a similar event in December, notes Anna Maria Hummerstone, director of Human Resource Services at the Yale School of Medicine and a member of the group. “The ANY event raised employees’ awareness that this group exists and, as a result, other employees have expressed their interest in being more involved,” she says.

To R.S.V.P. for the event, send an e-mail to

Latino Networking Group (LNG)

The LNG will hold a spring social on Thursday, May 7, 4-7 p.m. in Horchow Hall. To R.S.V.P. for the event, send an e-mail to

This event follows LNG’s December 2008 holiday party that doubled as a diaper drive for New Haven’s Diaper Bank and collected 2,000 diapers and $144.

“The Diaper Bank of New Haven is a wonderful organization that helps families meet a crucial need that is unfortunately not addressed by the federal government,” says Ricardo Sandoval, public relations associate at the Yale Center for British Art. “We decided to hold a diaper drive because we wanted to do something that would be beneficial to the community.”

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