The Spahr Center announces the forthcoming departure of its executive director, Adrian Shanker, who has been appointed by the Biden-Harris Administration to serve in the role of Senior Advisor on LGBTQI+ Health Equity in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Shanker joined The Spahr Center in April 2022 and in this short time has led an organizational rebranding with a new logo and website, an expansion of programs for LGBTQI+ families, and the launch of the organization’s Training Institute. He has also been a critical advocate for MPOX vaccine access in Marin County.
Shanker has been serving in a voluntary capacity in the Biden-Harris administration as a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS since 2021. He joined The Spahr Center after founding and leading Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center in Allentown, Pennsylvania for more than seven years.
Executive Director of The Spahr Center, Adrian Shanker comments:
“It has been a tremendous joy to work with the team at The Spahr Center to enhance and expand programs and services for LGBTQI+ and HIV+ community members in Marin. When I started at The Spahr Center, I did not anticipate a short tenure, however I am confident that the organization is in a strong position to continue its positive momentum in service to Marin’s LGBTQI+ and HIV+ communities. I am deeply humbled by the invitation to join the Biden-Harris Administration in this role and I look forward to supporting the administration’s efforts to advance health equity for the LGBTQI+ community.”
Chair of The Spahr Center’s Board of Directors, Denny David, comments:
“When we hired Adrian we knew we were bringing someone in with tremendous expertise in LGBTQI+ health. It turns out that The Biden Administration agrees. For decades, the LGBTQI+ community has fought for a seat at the table and we have seen the devastating consequences of being ignored. While we are sad to lose Adrian, that sadness is tempered by a tremendous amount of community pride. We are glad to have a champion for the health of our community heading to Washington to advise the administration, and at The Spahr Center, we will continue to seamlessly offer the services and programs our community needs.”
The Board of Directors is committed to leadership for the agency through the transition. Today, the Board announces the appointment of Cindy L. Myers, Ph.D., as interim executive director. Dr. Myers brings 30 years of executive leadership experience in the behavioral health and human services fields to The Spahr Center. She has served as an interim Chief Executive, Chief Operating and Chief Clinical Officer for a diverse range of businesses and organizations, including the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR).