When the GLBT Community Center of Baltimore (GLCCB) moved its offices from the Waxter Center in the Mount Vernon neighborhood to the new locale in lower Charles Village in August, there was an abundance of optimism among the staff and community members. On Oct. 16, the GLCCB hosted a grand opening to show off the new digs and to demonstrate why there is good reason for the optimism.
The center hosted a cookout in the parking lot of its 2530 N. Charles St. edifice, which houses a Bank of America branch and office space for several other organizations.
The open house featured a tour of the brightly lit, airy third floor suite complete with newly installed carpeting, several individual offices, multiple meeting rooms, including a large community room that can accommodate 100 people, a discreet HIV testing room where testing takes place twice a week, a library, an art gallery and ample parking among other amenities.
“This is a lot more modern and more youth-friendly with its open lounge area and library, which is more accessible,” Jennifer Eden, a GLCCB Peer Navigator, told the Blade when comparing this venue to the Waxter Center offices. “There is sufficient meeting space to hold five meetings going on the same time,” says Eden.
Mimi Demissew, the newly appointed director of operations for the GLCCB agrees. “It’s a lot more open and there’s a lot more room for programs,” she says. “It’s a better place for youth.”
Jabari Lyles, president of the GLCCB’s board, in announcing the move in July, described this as “a new chapter for a stronger, smarter organization on which our community can rely.” The new space, Lyles says, is “a breath of fresh air. Hopefully, it solidifies a successful future for us.”