Greetings Faithful Reader,
When an organization reaches a significant milestone, it is appropriate to look back and remember the people who contributed to the birth and growth of that organization. It would be impossible, however, to “name the names” of those who have contributed to Options’ success without omitting someone, as many of the people who nurtured Options over the years were volunteers who sought no recognition and whose identities have been lost in the passage of time. What has not been lost is the debt of gratitude we owe these entrepreneurs and builders who laid a foundation 40 years ago, and then built on that foundation in the ensuing decades to bring Options to the place we are today.
From that first edition, run off on a mimeograph machine and stapled together, to the black and white magazine format, to the introduction of color, to the four-color, glossy magazine you are reading now, Options has evolved into the publication of record for the LGBTQIA+ community in Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts. Those of us who have followed in the footsteps of those early pioneers have tried to live up to Options’ mission “to provide advocacy and education for the LGBTQ+ community of New England by organizing inclusive events; publishing life-affirming resources; and promoting diversity, health, safety, and equality.”
Options continues to be the media heart of our community, even as we have moved from an exclusive print presence to a digital format designed to reach a wider, younger, and more diverse audience. As stewards of the Options’ legacy and resources, we hope to live up to all that Options has been for our community, and promise to keep the flame burning until it is time for us to pass the torch to those who will take Options through the next 40 years.
To those who have gone before, we say thank you. To those who continue to support Options today through contributions of time, talent, and treasure, we say thank you. To our readers, advertisers, and sponsors, we say thank you. May we continue together in the beauty of our diversity to be that voice of hope and inspiration to our community and beyond.
Dr. Michael E. Marrapodi, Chair
Options Board of Directors