Newark LGBTQ Community Center

Announcing New Leadership


Newark, NJ—(August, 2019)—The Newark LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning) Community Center

RELAUNCHING: Newark has a beautiful, new safe space for the LGBTQ community, our supporters and allies to share in community and enjoy the programs and services at the Newark LGBTQ Community Center.


The Newark LGBTQ Community Center has reopened in its new location – 5 Washington Street, Newark, NJ.  Denise Hinds, President of the Board of Trustees expressed that (quote)

2019 was a year of change and challenges for the Newark LGBTQ Community Center. We had to leave our former location at 11 Halsey Street but we found a great new partner in the Newark Public Library – the site of our new home at 5 Washington Street Newark, NJ 07102. With the support and leadership of (mention Jeffrey), the center is now in a substantial new space and ready to begin regular activities as well as make the vision of our future come alive.


At the August 2019 meeting, The Board of Trustees selected Beatrice D. Simpkins, MPA, BSM/PA to serve as the new Executive Director. After serving on the Board of Trustees for one term, Ms. Simpkins agreed to lead the organization into the future, ensuring the center continues to be a vital part of the Newark and greater New Jersey community.  “I am committed to economic revolution for LGBTQ people in Newark and the Community Center. It is my pledge to do all that I can to ensure that the diversity and richness of the LGBTQ community is honored and respected, that we achieve our goals to grow financially, and that there will always be a safe space for LGBTQ people in Newark to gather, celebrate, talk, chill, and learn together. Look out for expanded programs and services, exciting partnerships, and the center being the enzyme that drives a coalition of LGBTQ people and allies as we seek social and economic justice and as we live our lives authentically and fully as members of this great and diverse community” (Quoted by Beatrice Simpkins).  

Beatrice Simpkins is originally from Jersey City, NJ and has lived and worked in Hudson and Essex Counties, NJ in the field of nonprofit program development and management for over 20 years. Her career includes serving as the Vice President of Employment and Training at the Hudson County Urban League (Jersey City) and Senior Grants Manager at St. Michael’s Medical Center (Newark). She is a former board member of the Freedom Center for Social Justice located in Charlotte, NC. Ms. Simpkins holds a Master Degree in Public Administration from Rutgers University –Newark – School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA). She is an active member of the Unity Fellowship NewArk church, serving as a deacon. In 2016, Ms. Simpkins was nominated and became a Rutgers 250 Fellow – receiving a medal at the “A Day of Revolutionary Thinking”, the culminating event of Rutgers’ yearlong 250Th birthday celebration.

James (Jim) Cramer, who served as the Interim Executive Director after the retirement of the founding Executive Director, Rev. Janyce Jackson Jones, led us courageously through 2019 despite all the challenges and we are thankful for his continued commitment as he now becomes a member of the Board of Trustees.


Based on recent census figures, an estimated four thousand residents of Newark identify as either lesbian or gay along with countless allies who support the advancement LGBTQ issues. As such, the Newark LGBTQ Community Center exists to provide a safe space and foster a better quality of life for our community and allies in the Greater Newark area. As the only LGBTQ Center open to all members of the public in Newark, New Jersey, it supports the diverse community in our area by offering programs, services and events that address the concerns of LGBTQ individuals– including homelessness, economic empowerment, health and wellness and social injustice. We strive to affirm lives and create a space where the community feels welcomed, embraced, empowered, and celebrated.

Contact: – Denise Hinds, President of the Board of Directors


Now at the Newark Public Library, 5 Washington Street – 1st Floor, Newark, New Jersey 07102

Mailing Address: PO Box 200434, Newark, New Jersey 07102

Phone: (973) 424-9555

Email:                                                              Website: