April 12, 2018
Three of NYU DC's student-led groups including the LGBTQ+ Intersections Student Group, Hall Congress, and DC Dialogues hosted Out & About as part of NYU Ally Week.
Out & About was a discussion consisting of LGBTQ+ identifying professionals who shared their stories of coming out in the workplace as well as their experiences with identity within diverse cultures and everyday life. The speakers' words and stories served as inspiration to the NYU DC student cohort as well as other professionals in Washington, DC, for this event was open to the public. This discussion provided a fun, safe space for diversity and for learning more about one another in the queer community.
The speakers included James W. Brunson Jr., Mental Health Therapist for Inova Juniper, DeVere Kutscher, Principal of Public Private Strategies (PPS) and Daniel Penchina, President of Voices for Progress and Voices for Progress Education Fund.
James W. Brunson Jr. earned his Bachelor's degree in Psychology from High Point University in HighPoint, North Carolina, and his Master's degree in Family Therapy from Mercer University, Macon, Georgia. James is a licensed Marriage and Family therapist, whose professional interests are: Couple and Family Dysfunction, Addiction processes, Human Development, as well as Racial and Sexual Minorities. James currently works as a Mental Health Therapist for Inova Juniper in Fairfax, VA. The Inova Juniper Program is Northern Virginia's largest provider of HIV/AIDS care, where all aspects of primary medical care, mental health, and case management services are provided to HIV positive individuals.
DeVere Kutscher is an experienced professional in the arenas of small and minority business advocacy, communication, media, strategy and nonprofit-corporate engagement.
Most recently, DeVere served as Chief Strategy Officer and SVP of Communications for the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC). He helped revitalize America’s largest Hispanic business organization, which represents the interests of more than 4.4 million enterprises nationwide. He previously served as the association’s Chief of Staff, and led the USHCC Foundation.
Prior to the USHCC, DeVere managed innovative projects in the field of microfinance technology, specifically international money transfers via low-cost and non-traditional methods such as prepaid and mobile platforms. Previously, he served as the Director of Marketing and Communications for NACCRRA, an NGO improving the quality of child care in America. He also worked in the U.S. and Costa Rica as management trainer for Capital One Financial, as well as a workforce management software consultant for TCS Management Group (Aspect Communications).
DeVere is a Fellow at the British American Project, and serves on the advisory board of Affinity Inc. Magazine - America’s leading LGBT business publication. He received his MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management and his BA from Davidson College.
Daniel Penchina is the President of Voices for Progress and Voices for Progress Education Fund. Penchina has 15 years of experience navigating the intersection of policymaking and politics. Daniel was principal at The Raben Group, a progressive public affairs firm based in Washington, DC. There, he designed and managed issue and advocacy campaigns — including developing legislative strategy, communications plans, coalitions, and tools for grassroots organizing — for dozens of national nonprofits, foundations, and companies. Prior to joining the firm, Penchina worked as a senior advisor and strategist for several members of Congress, including legislative director to Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL), legislative director for Congressman (now Senator) Christopher Murphy (CT) and legislative assistant and appropriations associate for Congressman Jerrold Nadler (NY). Penchina is a member of the board of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, a member of the board of Supporting and mentoring Youth Advocates and Leaders (SMYAL), and is a member of the Board of the Campaign for All DC Families. He is past-president of Q Street, an association of LGBT lobbyists and advocates. He graduated with honors from New York University.