Kaleidoscope Trust, the leading UK charity advocating for the human rights of LGBTQ people globally, has appointed Phyll Opoku-Gyimah as executive director, effective 5 August, 2019. She replaces outgoing executive director Paul Dillane.
Widely known as Lady Phyll – partly due to her decision to reject an MBE to protest Britain’s role in formulating anti-LGBTQ penal codes across its empire – she joins Kaleidoscope Trust from the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) trade union, where she has spent a decade advocating for the rights of workers within the union, including as a negotiator on behalf of Civil Service workers and as the Head of Equality and Learning.
A community builder and organiser, with strong ties to emergent LGBTQ movements around the world, Opoku-Gyimah is also the co-founder and executive director of UK Black Pride, Europe’s largest celebration for LGBTQ people of African, Asian, Caribbean, Middle Eastern and Latin American descent.
“With more than 20 years of experience as an LGBTQ rights activist and anti-racism campaigner, I’m thrilled to embark on the next chapter of my professional life with Kaleidoscope Trust. The charity’s work continues to be an important and necessary intervention across the Commonwealth and my on-the-ground work in the region has provided immeasurably valuable insight, not only into the lives of the LGBTQ civil society and their particular hurdles, but into the shared structures that continue to stifle liberation for people across the global south. I’m excited to work alongside an incredibly impassioned team to translate Kaleidoscope Trust’s mission, vision and strategy into measurable and lasting action.”
Sir Stephen Wall, Chair of the Board at Kaleidoscope Trust:
“From her work advocating for the rights of workers to leading one of the most impressive and effective pride organisations in the world, Lady Phyll has demonstrated that she has the personal qualities and professional skills to ensure our increased impact across the Commonwealth. She brings to Kaleidoscope Trust a perspective, passion and set of skills that an organisation like ours needs to help address and redress the oppressive colonial legacies from which many across the Commonwealth are trying to break free.”