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Our Story

Queer Eugene is a local organization started in June 2021 by Lake and Trystan Weeks to support queer folks in Oregon with access to resources and community. As of July 2022 we have applied for nonprofit 501(c)(3) status and received IRS confirmation of our 501(c)(3) status at the beginning of August! Our mission is to organize support, resources, and community for queer folks in the state currently known as Oregon. We will do this through events, information gathering and sharing, and one day have a physical space to develop a queer community center. Lake has stayed with Queer Eugene as a board member and current President of the Board; Trystan has stayed with Queer Eugene as the Technology Administrator and volunteers at events. We hope to grow our presence and connections within the community and create space for all of us to enjoy together.

Board Leadership

Picture of Lake
Lake They/She
Co-Founder, President of the Board

Lake is an Independent DEI Contractor and educator in Oregon who supports the education system with equity and inclusion practices- and joy! With their lenses of neurodivergence, disability, and queerness, they started Queer Eugene to help build intersectional community for everyone. They are happy to personally have a great little family here in Oregon and want to help change systems to better support people, and help others find meaningful connections in their community.

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Lulu She/Her
Vice President

My name is Lulu and my pronouns are she/her. I am a mother of two, partner, and involved with all things ASD. My passion is found in serving/supporting my community on a micro-level that inspires others to believe that life has no ceiling to their dreams. I received my undergrad in family psychology and headed to UO for a master’s in school psychology. Neuro-spicy life is fun and I encourage all to be their authentic selves! I’m here to listen and help anyway I am able.

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Cortney Harrington They/Them
Secretary of the Board

My name is Cortney. I am a Life Skills teacher for middle school students. I graduated from the University of Oregon with a Master's degree in education. I am the secretary board member of Queer Eugene. I believe in using any abilities I have to help build a community that can find homes within themselves as well as one another so that we can all thrive instead of trying to survive.

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Devyn Thurman They/He
Treasurer of the Board

Devyn is a 30 year old queer who has been living in Eugene for 5 years with their partner and 2 cats. Currently working as a social worker, Devyn has had the opportunity to work with many different communities in lane county and strives to support connections throughout it. Devyn has worked as a group leader in numerous Rotary conferences, as well as has coordinated volunteer events and fundraisers throughout college. They are excited for more opportunities to help build up our community. An Oregon native, they enjoy spending time at the beach, planning camping trips and having every window open to smell the rain. When they’re not at work you will find Devyn playing board games with friends, arguing with their cats, cooking needlessly complicated meals and napping.

Board Members

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Gabie Mbenza-Ngoma She/Her
Board Member

Gabie Mbenza-Ngoma is a queer, Black Congolese American Antiracist elementary school teacher in Portland.

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Branden McFarland He/Him
Board Member

Branden is a middle school teacher in Portland, Oregon. He graduated from the University of Oregon with a Master's degree in education. As a queer educator, Branden is dedicated to making schools safe and affirming spaces for young people. In his free time he enjoys collecting and playing trading card games, painting D&D miniatures, and baking bread.

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Andy He/Him
Board Member

Andy is a Community Health Worker in the Eugene area. He was born in South Korea and adopted by an American family as an infant. After spending his childhood in the suburbs of Chicago, he moved to the Bay Area, which helped to shape the person that he is today. As someone who struggled with addiction in his early adulthood, he strongly values harm reduction and education, and he is always willing to have a conversation about those topics. He hopes to bring his lived experience and a diverse opinion to the QE board. He is excited to find more opportunities to serve Eugene's queer community, which has always accepted him just the way he is.

Lead Volunteers

Picture of Trystan
Trystan Weeks He/Him
Co-Founder, Technology Administrator

Trystan is a local queer artist and tech aficionado. Trystan currently manages the QE website and our technology needs. Between projects, he is working on web development and exploring the intersection of art, science, and technology. Trystan is excited to help foster online communities and to connect people with resources. From Salem originally, he's been living in Eugene for five years with his partner and two cats.

Picture of Blake
Blake Slama They/Them
Program Coordinator

Blake serves as the Program Coordinator for Queer Eugene and attends community outreach events as much as possible. Blake is the contact for several of QE’s own community events and the dedicated clothing donation picker-upper for QE’s One-Stop-Shops. Originally from the upper midwest, Blake moved to Eugene in hopes of warmer weather and a queer community to call their own. Through various friends and community events they stumbled upon Lake/Queer Eugene where they found the opportunity to engage and help support a wonderful and vibrant group of folks! Along with their position at QE, they recently began working in the social services field. In their free time, Blake enjoys walks by the river, video/board games, and being a couch potato with their chihuahua, Paws!