The boards and staff of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Leadership Institute extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Rodger McFarlane, a longtime leader in the HIV/AIDS and LGBT communities who died Friday. Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Victory Fund and Leadership Institute, issued the following statement:
“Rodger’s energy, enthusiasm and fearlessness drove him to achieve extraordinary things, and he will be remembered as one of the great heroes of both the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the fight for equality for LGBT people.
Like most leaders, Rodger was impatient with roadblocks, but he was never content just to find a way around them. He worked to remove them altogether so that those who came after him wouldn’t have to find their own way around. He was a game-changer—someone who asked the tough, impolite questions that moved a project forward.
Because of Rodger, LGBT movement organizations are working together in ways they hadn’t before he took the reins at the Gill Foundation. The successes we see today are partly a result of his insistence that stubborn turf battles end, and that each organization’s work should complement the others’ and add to an overarching vision of our path to full equality. We are much, much farther down that path today because of Rodger McFarlane.”