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 Examiner.com. )

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