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San Diego Pride adds diversity, youth to board of directors

SAN DIEGO -- Four young community leaders, representing the diversity of the city, have been elected to the San Diego Pride board of directors.

They are:

* Rick Cervantes, 26, has volunteered for Pride for seven years. He has a communications degree from SDSU and is on the Marketing and Public Relations team at Mo's Universe. He co-founded San Diego Remembers and volunteered for the Hillcrest Youth Center.

* Cassandra Perando, 26, is a veteran of the Navy, having served as a nuclear electrician’s mate. She joins San Diego Pride as one of three military veterans on the board of directors. She also has a passion for activism.

* Carlos Salazar, 25, is a finance consultant at AT&T. He has an MBA with a focus in global marketing, an MPA with a concentration in non-profit management, and a B.A. in political science. His passions include leadership development and civic engagement.

* Matthew Verdeflor, 25, is a senior staff associate with the accounting firm TGG Accounting. He brings valuable accounting skills to the board of directors and also offers a fresh perspective as a relative newcomer to community organizations.

"The board of directors of San Diego LGBT Pride is now more diverse with regard to age and ethnicity than any in our 39-year history,” said William Rodriguez-Kennedy, incoming Pride co-chair. “These four new members and this board represent a new generation of leadership for Pride and San Diego's LGBT community. You can expect great things from this group of dedicated leaders, and it will be my honor to lead them as we move forward.”

With the four newcomers, the Pride board now has 12 members plus four emeriti. In addition to Rodriguez-Kennedy, the others are Ebony Aldridge, Dion Brown, Jaime Carrillo, Romer De Los Santos, Tiffany Gonzalez, Joe Mayer and Jennifer Sieber. The emeriti are Jeri Dilno, Debra McEntee, Doug Moore and Judi Schaim.

Founded in 1974, San Diego LGBT is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is: Fostering pride in and respect for all lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities, locally, nationally and globally.