GLAAD hires new Southeast regional media manager

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KNOXVILLE – Alex Shoor is a man with a vision that includes helping local communities prepare for the 2006 election year with a focus on the constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage in Tennessee .

Acknowledging that a number of dynamic, new GLBT organizations have recently emerged, Shoor wants to do all he can to help from his post as the new Southeast Regional Media Manager for the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD.)

“2006 will be an important year in Tennessee , with a major elections and a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage in the state,” Shoor explained.

Founded in 1985, GLAAD has a laundry list of accomplishment that includes speaking about such issues as same-sex marriage, media portrayals of GLBT characters, and a host of other topics. Anywhere there is an intersection of GLBT issues and the media, GLAAD is there to help.

GLAAD’s Web site describes their mission as a resolve to be an organization that is dedicated to promoting and ensuring fair, accurate and inclusive representation of people and events in the media as a means of eliminating homophobia and discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. Their Southeast Region includes Alabama , Arkansas , Florida , Georgia , Kentucky , Louisiana , Mississippi , North Carolina , South Carolina , Tennessee , Virginia and West Virginia .

“GLAAD is a media advocacy organization committed to fair, accurate and inclusive representation of the GLBT community in the media. Our efforts are two-fold: we work with media professionals and outlets to enhance their coverage of gay and lesbian individuals, as well as with local and statewide GLBT organizations and their allies,” Shoor said.

Hoping to prepare people from all across Tennessee , Shoor plans to equip GLBT Tennesseans and their supporters for the challenges that lie ahead.

“My goal is to help people from all across Tennessee – from straight allies in Nashville to gay families in Oak Ridge – for this challenge and others by preparing them to tell their stories through the media. Should gay and lesbian advocates need aid in developing media relationships, writing press releases, pitching stories to the media, helping plan media strategy or responding to negative coverage in their local newspaper, GLAAD and I will be readily available as a resource and an ally,” Shoor promises.

In his capacity as the Southern Media Manager for GLAAD, Shoor will have the opportunity to train people in local communities to be compelling media spokespeople and advocates, and give them the skills to speak out on issues of marriage, faith and family. He will be traveling throughout the South to do so and looks forward to an upcoming trip to Tennessee .

“We hope that all Tennesseans – gay, straight, transgender, white, black, Christian, atheist, families, couples and children – will be involved with GLAAD to strengthen the ability of the GLBT community to use the media as a means to spread our message of hope and equality to the larger public,” Shoor adds.

For further information, contact Alex Shoor at (646) 871-8023 or shoor@glaad.org.