LGBT Center to celebrate 10-year anniversary

A photo of students and staff members at the Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center.
The Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center is located in the Kirkhof Center, room 1161.
Image credit - Amanda Pitts

The 2017-2018 academic year marks the 10-year anniversary of the creation of Grand Valley’s Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center. 

Celebratory events are planned in October for the center, which opened in 2007. It was named posthumously for its founding director and professor of liberal studies, Milt Ford, who worked at Grand Valley for more than 40 years. Ford died in 2014.

Two events are planned and both are free and open to faculty, staff members, students and community members. 

The first event will take place October 17 from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Eberhard Center on the Pew Grand Rapids Campus. Remarks will be made by current students, alumni and Gary Van Harn, budget manager and assistant for the Padnos International Center, who was Ford’s partner. He has led the Allies & Advocates program and is founder of the GVSU Faculty-Staff LGBT Scholarship. 

The second event for community members will take place October 18 from 6-9 p.m. at Creston Brewery in Grand Rapids. The brewery will donate proceeds made that day to the center's action fund. 

Jen Hsu-Bishop, director of the LGBT Center, said the center has grown tremendously through the years. The growth includes three endowed scholarships, an annual event that features a nationally renowned speaker, and student engagement and support programs that reach hundreds of students every year.   

"Ten years ago, there was a real need for a center to support students in the LGBT community," Hsu-Bishop said. "Since then, we've positioned ourselves to be leaders, and have established valuable relationships with people on campus and in the West Michigan community."

For more information, visit or contact the Milton E. Ford LBGT Resource Center at (616) 331-2530.


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