Every year, a dedicated team of volunteers work to bring you the pride events across Polk County that you’ve come to love, from monthly happy hours, to youth-based events, and of course, our annual main events.
Ahead of our main events of Polk Pride 2022, get to know our board of directors who have been working hard to make it all happen.
Scott was a founding member of Polk Pride in 2015 and has served as Board President every year since. He is led by ambition to help cultivate a safe and promising community for LGBTQ+ youth in Polk County. Scott’s favorite part of pride is seeing the park filled with people of all walks of life celebrating love and acceptance. Scott lives in Lakeland with his husband, John. Together, they enjoy cycling, being outdoors, and attending concerts and performing arts events.
Kerri has been involved with Polk Pride since our founding. She serves as the Vice President of our board and is the current President of the Lakeland Youth Alliance and PFLAG of Polk County. Polk Pride is a huge part of Kerri’s life, because she believes everyone should be treated equally. Her favorite pride memory is of the pride board being brought to tears when several hundred people showed up to the very first Pride in the Park. Kerri and her husband, Kevin, have been married for 24 years. They have two sons and are enjoying their lives as recent empty nesters. In her spare time, Kerri dreams of having grandchildren.
Dustin has been a member of the Polk Pride board since inception. He first became involved with Polk Pride because he believed the LGBTQ+ community needed more safe spaces and representation within Polk County. Dustin’s favorite part of pride is seeing all the board’s hard work pay off at our main event, Pride in the Park, and all the value it adds to the community. Dustin considers himself a total car nerd. By day, he is an HR Director with IGT Global, where he serves on the diversity and inclusion council.
Krissy was a founding member of Polk Pride in 2015. Krissy is an Advocate and Ally for the LGBTQIA community. Her dream is to see a world where no kid feels left behind, lost or unable to be their authentic self. Krissy is a Meat Manger for Publix where she has worked for 19 years. In her spare time, she likes to travel, hang out with her friends, snuggle her cats and play video games. Krissy’s favorite thing about Polk Pride is standing in the middle of the park and watching all the families enjoying themselves.
Nick has been a member of the Polk Pride board for four years and currently serves as Treasurer. Through his involvement, he hopes to give back to the community and help the organization grow and succeed. Nick’s favorite memory of Polk Pride was meeting Leslie Jordan at our 2015 events.
Megan has been a Polk Pride board member for more than two years. She decided to get involved with Polk Pride because someone she loved came out, and Megan believed they deserved all the love and support their family and community could provide. One of Megan’s favorite memories of pride is the overwhelming response she received when she wore a “Free Mom Hugs” shirt to Pride in the Park. She and her husband, Bob, reside in Lakeland and have two daughters and a grandchild. Megan serves as the Worship Director at her affirming church, Beacon Hill Fellowship.
Austin has been a member of the Polk Pride board for more than two years and currently serves as our Social Media Manager. One of his favorite parts of being involved with Polk Pride is having the opportunity to meet and build relationships with people from across the community. Austin is a self-proclaimed foodie who loves to cook and entertain. By day, he works in Public Affairs at Publix Corporate. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling to new places, participating in shows at Lakeland Community Theater, and spending time with loved ones alongside his partner of nearly nine years, Ed.
Ed has been a Polk Pride board member for more than two years. His favorite part about being involved with Polk Pride is having a hand in creating an environment where people can come together as a community and celebrate who they are. Ed and his boyfriend, Austin, reside in Lakeland and enjoy day trips to Disney and spending time with family and friends. Ed is a self-proclaimed hater of seafood and aspiring plant dad.
Michelle has been on the Polk Pride board since 2021. She decided to become involved because she wanted to be part of an organization that supports all walks of life and helps those in our community who need a voice. Michelle’s favorite part of pride is our largest event, Pride in the Park. Seeing members of the community gather in support of the LGBTQ+ community makes her heart sing. By day, Michelle is a branch manager for Truly Title Central Florida. She and her wife, Karie, have two children and a grandchild.
Karie joined the Polk Pride board in 2021 with hopes of helping foster safe spaces for the community. Her favorite pride memory is every time she has witnessed someone in the community learn that there is pride representation in Polk County. Karie is most excited for Pride in Faith this year. She is in love with her God and wife, Michelle. By day, Karie is a financial advisor. She is the mother of two amazing young men and “Oma” to a perfect grandson!