Following a lengthy leave of absence Herndon Graddick has stepped down as president of GLAAD, a position he held for just over a year.
Graddick was announced as president of the nation’s top LGBT watchdog group in April 2012, and was instrumental in many vital campaigns, including his call for the Boy Scouts of America to end their ban on gay scouts and scout leaders.
However, after delivering a speech at the organization’s annual media awards in New York in March, which the New York Times described as “rambling” and Wall Street Journal called “disjointed,” Graddick had been conspicuously absent from the subsequent award ceremonies held in Los Angeles in April and in San Francisco earlier this month. This led to rumors of his departure, which GLAAD spokesman Rich Ferraro confirmed this morning.
“I’m proud to leave GLAAD with a stronger, more efficient organization and an incredibly talented and experienced Board and staff,” Graddick said in a statement released to Queerty. “I’m happy the role I was able to play in advancing the need for our community to fully support the rights of our transgender brothers and sisters. Our movement is benefited by the leadership not only of heroes like Evan Wolfson, Chad Griffin, Mara Keisling and Kate Kendell, but of the necessary and vital blogger and grassroots communities. I look forward to returning to a private life and supporting the fight from behind the scenes.”
Thom Reilly, chair for the org’s board of directors, commended Graddick’s commitment to the fight for equality. “GLAAD is very grateful for Herndon’s work championing LGBT rights, especially his work on behalf of the trans community,” he said in a statement. “On behalf of the entire organization, I want to wish him the best.”
GLAAD’s Chief of Staff Dave Montez is now serving as Acting President until the Board of Directors meets in New York later his month to decide on a permanent replacement for Graddick.