Bronx Community Pride Center Closes After Former Director’s Arrest

Logo of the Bronx Community Pride Center, New York.

About two days after news that the former director of the Bronx Community Pride Center was charged and arrested for possibly embezzling $338,000, the board of directors of the LGBT non-profit organization today announced the closing of its doors effective June 30th.

“The board of directors of the Bronx Community Pride Center (BCPC), the borough’s largest LGBTQ service organization, has unanimously voted to cease operations of the center on June 30, 2012 and to begin making arrangements for current services to be provided by partner organizations within the Bronx,” noted a press release issued this evening.

The former director of the Bronx Community Pride Center, Lisa Winters, has been arrested and accused of stealing over $338K for personal expenses—including a vacation for her and her future wife to South Africa, according to an article published late this afternoon in the Gothamist.

According to the BCPC press release, because of the “current economic difficulties, past debt and inability to raise sufficient unrestricted funding, the organization can no longer implement its current programs. The organization has debts which exceed revenues at this time and without significant cash infusions from major donors they (the board of directors) are unable to continue operations financially.”

Winters, 47, and her wife Scroggins, who have been together for 14 years, were married at the City Clerk’s office in Manhattan on the first day of legal gay marriage last year, today’s article noted.

“As BCPC closes I ask that all Bronx LGBTQ organizations come together and fill the void that would be left behind,” said Antonio Centeno Jr., BCPC Board Chairperson. “The Board of Directors is committed to assisting in any way to make sure that our clients continue to be served, especially since this population is traditionally under served in the Bronx.”

The Bronx Community Pride Center was a not-for-profit organization which was incorporated in 1997 as the Bronx Lesbian and Gay Health Resource Consortium. Around 2005/2006 the name and mission was changed and the agency then became a community center.

“We’re a group of caring individuals and this decision has been difficult for us to make, but we will never give up for our mission of health equality,” said Centeno.

(For an updated version of this article check out the )

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6 Responses to “Bronx Community Pride Center Closes After Former Director’s Arrest”

  1. Denise Clark says:

    The Boogie Down Bronx, how sad.

  2. NelsonG says:

    I find it hard to imagine that this could have been happening for more than five years and the staff and board of directors were blind to it all.

    They all need to be held in shame,too.

    Rather than shutting down the center, those currently running the place should continue providing full services until someone can come along to help fix this mess.

  3. marcus says:

    I think this center was nothing but a boondoggle. What services did it REALLY offer and to how many people? They never answered the phone, returned phone calls or answered emails. Over several years, I contacted them by phone and email to inquire about volunteering but never got a response. Now I know why.

  4. Clr says:

    I worked at the Bronx Community Pride Center as its Deputy Director for 89 days in 2004/05 before resigning due to the erratic, unprofessional, and questionable policies of Lisa Winters. I wrote about her abuses and shady behavior and copied my resignation letter to the President of the Board. Nothing was done and I never got a reply. Lisa’s best friend was the board president. They were protecting each other and blocking information to other Board Members. The Board was inactive, inattentive, and lacking any kind of oversight. They were warned numerous times about Lisa, but chose to do nothing. While I was employed and trying to build up programming, it came to my attention that the Youth Coordinator for the “Spot Next Door” augmented his income by being involved with porn. Especially porn that was made by black and latin youth. When I found this out I confronted Lisa, and in my letter of resignation I stated it again, but no one ever helped me or supported me. Using NYC money to fund pornographers to work with marginalized youth was beyond contempt. She denied knowing, but the entire staff verified that she was lying. I asked why she did not fire him on the spot when I brought it to her attention. She had hired friends and considered him”family” so did not want to do anything. It was another sign of wildly inappropriate boundaries.It was also sad that she would put the children and young adults at the Center in harms way with an adult who was neither educated, trained, or appropriate for the position. As for her broader reputation, it was well known across the city that she was to be avoided at all costs. This is why her community work fell flat, but also why the Center was not supported by the larger community. I was told many times that Lisa was not to be trusted and had burned many bridges in the community. How the hell did she get the job in the first place? Hummmmmmm maybe from her best friend the Board President. Any Board Member could have come to the site and talked with the staff at any time, but none of them showed their faces. How they could have put up with her for so long is why the money is gone. A dysfunctional Board hired a dysfunctional Executive Director. They deserve legal action against them as much as Lisa Winters.

  5. marcus says:

    Is there any chance of restarting the center? Its proximity to Lincoln Hospital and the bronx’s major subway hub would make it an ideal place for and LGBT Center focused on health and transgender medical services. I think there are many other boondoggles in the Bronx. We always here about trans medical services being needed in the Bronx – but when I try to volunteer as a physician with such experience, I get no answers from any of them.

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