Public Info

Union County to Host GLAAD LGBTQ Accelerating Acceptance Training Courses

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is proud to host GLAAD Media Institute’s LGBTQ accelerating acceptance training courses free for anyone who wants to build the core skills and techniques that influence positive cultural change.

Presented in collaboration with Union County’s Office of LGBTQ Services, GLAAD Media Institute will bring two of their signature courses to Union County. GLAAD’s Engagement 101 Telling Your Story: Messaging and Media Tools For Today’s Activists will be held at Galloping Hill Golf Course in Kenilworth on Friday, September 28 from 9:30AM until 4PM. GLAAD’s Engagement 202: Telling Your Story Through Social Media course will be held at Warinanco Sports Center in Roselle on Friday, October 19 from 10AM until 2PM. Registration is free and required online at Register for one or both of the workshops.

“The Freeholder Board is honored to partner with GLAAD to bring their free training courses to empower LGBTQ individuals and allies in our community to champion inclusion and acceptance,” said Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados. “In today’s climate, we have to be progressive and aggressive in our efforts to support inclusion, understanding and acceptance.”

Using the best practices, tools, and techniques they have perfected over the past 30 years, the GLAAD Media Institute works to transform individuals into compelling storytellers, media-savvy navigators, and mighty ambassadors whose voices break through the noise and make change.

Join us on September 28th for Engagement 101. In this free course, participants will learn how to get a message of inclusion and acceptance across effectively in the mainstream media narrative about the LGBTQ community. Equipped with GLAAD’s Accelerating Acceptance data, the GLAAD Media Institute will work with you to reach and teach all about the LGBTQ community through a personal lens, yours. Topics include LGBTQ acceptance, understanding media mentality, speaking to your audience, messaging and framing the issue, social media basics, and interview techniques.

Join us on Friday, October 19 for Engagement 202. Designed for those who are starting to incorporate social media into their advocacy strategy, participants in this specialized course will receive a comprehensive overview of social media platforms, as well as leveraging social media for reaching expanded audiences, deeper storytelling, and accelerating acceptance. This free course will teach participants the best practices to make the most of the potential for a variety of social media platforms, while also carefully avoiding pitfalls that exist in the social media sphere.

“Sometimes the most effective way to influence change is by sharing stories of personal experiences,” said Freeholder Alexander Mirabella, liaison to the Union County LGBTQ Ad Hoc Committee. “The GLAAD courses are an important opportunity for LGBTQ individuals and allies to increase the impact of their voice to celebrate diversity, generate inclusion, foster acceptance and advance equality.”

“The GLAAD Media Institute has trained over 5000 advocates, activists, and allies, and we are excited to support the Freeholder’s work to accelerate acceptance for the LGBTQ community of Union County,” said Ross Murray, Senior Director for Education & Training at the GLAAD Media Institute. “We are looking forward to exciting training opportunities that can empower the local community to speak up for the values of acceptance and inclusion.”

GLAAD is a U.S. non-governmental media monitoring organization founded by LGBT people in the media. Before March 2013, the name “GLAAD” had been an acronym for “Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation”, but became the primary name due to its inclusiveness of bisexual and transgender issues.

Established as part of Chairman Granados’ 2018 Moving Union County Forward initiatives, the Office of LGBTQ Services, under the Division of Outreach and Advocacy in the Department of Human Services, is the first County government office of its kind in the State of New Jersey. It offers a platform for leadership and collaboration to support equality, and serves as a catalyst for advocacy, awareness and action on current and emerging issues that impact the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals.

For more information about the Office of LGBTQ Services, contact Danni Newbury, Coordinator, at 908-527-4742 or or visit