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The new space served as a catalyst for Wingspanís latest round of growth. It is three
times larger than its previous location, and offers significant benefits: secure offices,
central heating and cooling, and several meeting spaces that afford so the Center can
remain open even when meetings are held. All of these features added up to a space
that permitted Wingspan to expand services and access to a larger portion of our community.
We hired our first paid staff member in 1998.
Today, Wingspan has a nine-person professional staff in addition to a volunteer
staff of over 90 dedicated individuals. The Center is now visited, and used, by
more of the community than ever, and new community services and activities have
been developed. The Wingspan Domestic Violence Project, founded in 1996, has grown into
a nationally recognized project, and was honored by the Arizona State Attorney Generalís
office with its 2000 Distinguished Service Award.
In 2001, Wingspan and QueerVoice created Tucsonís first comprehensive LGBT youth program,
which includes a youth drop-in lounge, a six-computer CyberCenter with youth-only hours,
programs in leadership development, after-school tutoring and mentoring, and community
outreach. We also continue to hold the weekly support group that dates back to the 1970s.
Wingspan began as a dedicated group of caring LGBT people who sought to create
a sense of family for Tucsonís community. Today, ten years later, that spirit remains -
and can be seen daily in the faces of the Centerís hardworking volunteers as they answer
phone calls, greet new visitors, and lend a hand to our community.
Based on articles by Ken Godat (March 1998) and Joyce Bolinger (March 2002)