Erica Barz and Sandra Zapata have joined One Iowa, the state’s leading lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) organization. Barz filled the communications specialist position in early July, while Zapata filled the Iowa Pride Network (One Iowa’s gay-straight alliance program) coordinator position in mid-August.
“As One Iowa moves past the marriage narrative and into supporting equality and justice for LGBT people from cradle to grave, we are excited to bring on new staff to this next chapter in the LGBT movement,” said Executive Director Donna Red Wing.
“One Iowa appreciates the legal advancements protecting LGBT Iowans from de jure discrimination. It is now time to work against the de facto discrimination, hate speech, bullying and intolerance that diminish the lives of all Iowans,” she said.
“And that is why we invited Barz and Zapata to join our team.”
Barz graduated from Simpson College in May with a B.A. in English. She spent her last semester in Washington, D.C. as a policy and communications intern with PFLAG National.
“I’m thrilled to be back with One Iowa after interning with them last summer,” Barz said.
“I’m excited to work to further One Iowa’s goal of full equality for LGBT Iowans.”
Barz is a 2011 Union High School graduate and the daughter of Jim and Melanie Barz of La Porte City.
Before coming to One Iowa, Zapata was an ESL teacher with middle school students and adults, a therapist for adolescents and adults with substance abuse issues, a domestic abuse advocate and an outreach specialist. She has always worked to lift up the voices of oppressed populations in the community.
“I’m hoping to continue creating safe spaces for diverse populations,” Zapata said. “I’m especially ready to bring attention to people of color and create recognition for the diversity that exists within the LGBTQ community.”