In Spring 2009, Eastern created the LGBTQ+ Task force made up of faculty, staff, and students. Their mission was to improve the campus climate for LGBTQ+ communities. The Task Force was chaired by Dr. Terrie Ashby-Scott, the former Director of the Office of Transitions and Inclusion. The Task Force met in Summer 2009 to determine the most critical areas for action at EWU. They established three goals at the retreat:
- Train faculty and staff about LGBTQ+ issues
- Provide visibility on the campus, including an LGBTQ+ center
- Receive support on important issues from the university’s administration.
Following the retreat, the Pride Center opened in Fall 2009 and was staffed by faculty, staff, and student volunteers. Sandy Williams, editor of Black Lens, was hired as the part-time Pride Center Coordinator in 2010 and the official grand opening of the Center [pictured below] was during Winter 2010. The Center has grown every year since it opened, and acquired funding to hire a full-time Pride Center Manager beginning Fall 2015.