Pride South Florida Board Meeting Erupts in Chaos; One Member Resigns

Tuesday’s Pride South Florida board meeting ended with a quick but heated discussion, leading to the resignation of board member and Stonewall Summer Pride event chairman, Corrie Boyd.

John Fugate, a fellow board member and former employee of South Florida Gay News, called for his immediate dismissal, alleging that he broke the agency’s bylaws when he signed contracts for the musical acts at the event that only the board president could sign.

“It’s in my budget,” Boyd told SFGN after the meeting. “Every time I tried to get in touch with the people that claimed that they should have signed it… they’re not available.”

Boyd said Fugate never brought any of this up to him before the meeting.

No other board members made a motion to go with Fugate’s request for an immediate dismissal, but Boyd announced he wanted to resign anyway due to frustrations with hosting the event and strife that arose in the board.

Fugate was also going to call for the resignation of board member Jeff Sterling, for allegedly using his position in Pride South Florida for his own personal gain and profit. Sterling was not at the meeting. Board members wanted the full board to be present to discuss the issue, including Boyd’s dismissal. However, he resigned on his own accord and left abruptly.

The board had just spent more than two hours at the meeting going over the Stonewall Summer Pride event, taking comments from a dozen members of the public about logistical errors that occurred.

Since its founding the June festival has changed hands several times. Last year the event was hosted by the Rainbow Business Coalition, and this year Pride South Florida took on the challenge of hosting the event, which drew 18,000 people. Boyd sat on the board of the coalition and had experience planning the event, which is why he joined Pride.

However, he said that the inexperience of the board led to a lot of strife and disagreements.

“It was a little bit of frustration on everybody’s part,” he said.

This comes after the resignation of board member Marc Hansen earlier this year. He allegedly recorded meetings without notifying others in the room and also wanted to take a medical leave of absence until August. SFGN has also repeatedly requested tax documents from the agency in light of an IRS audit, which they have refused.

The next board meeting is set for July 8 and elections will be held sometime between July 15 and August 15.

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