Lizabeth Kay Kleintop is the first transgender woman to serve as chair on the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center Board of Directors.
The Allentown-based community center provides arts, health and youth programs for LGBT people in the Lehigh Valley.
Kleintop has served on the board for about five years and will serve as board chair in her final year.
“My colleagues on the board trust me with an opportunity to build a team for the future of the center, a trust to live up to,” she said. adding that she will continue to build a strong LGBT community in Lehigh Valley.
Kleintop earned a Ph.D in business administration from Temple University and a master of public administration from Pennsylvania State University.
The new chair also studied at Muhlenberg College for her bachelor’s degree.
Kleintop is an educator and the associate director of graduate programming and accreditation at Moravian College.
She has served as treasurer for the board since the center was established.
“The board of directors is very reflective on a lot of parts of the community we serve,” said Adrian Shanker, the center’s founder and executive director. “Liz has served on our board since the beginning as our longtime board treasurer and she’s an expert in human-resource issues and organizational management.
“We are really thrilled we get to benefit from her expertise as she goes into the role of board chair,” Shanker added.
The board elects its own officers and while the position is typically held for two years, Kleintop will serve one year as the board chair before stepping down.
Kleintop said she hopes more members of the community get involved.
“We need to limit terms on the board so more of the community can get involved,” she said. “It’s time for someone else in the community to come onto the board.”
Kleintop is also a member of the LGBT Business Council of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce.
She has been published in journals, books and conference programs.
During her time on the board, Kleintop said she and the team have embarked on strategic planning, which started last year. She also spent time with a group of students, worked on her graduate program, and prepared to merge with Lehigh Valley Pride.
“The LGBT center is really taking the lead in the Pride event — we will be working with everybody to get things going,” the board chair said.
Kleintop said the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center has grown quickly and continues in a solid direction.
“The more the community gets involved, the better,” she said.
For more information on the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center, visit www.bradburysullivancenter.org.