The LGBT Mentoring Project

David Fleischer founded and currently directs the LGBT Mentoring Project. The Mentoring Project provides ongoing, intensive mentoring, coaching, training and support to a small number of LGBT partner organizations around the country and to their leaders, both LGBT and allies. Many are preparing for or recovering from anti-LGBT ballot measures, or are engaged in other efforts to reduce anti-gay prejudice. Partner organizations in the past year have included the Vote for Equality project of the LA Gay and Lesbian Center, EqualityMaine, and Ask Cleveland.

For more than three years, the Mentoring Project operated as a pilot project—an experiment—to test the hypothesis that consistent, frequent, one-on-one, on-site mentoring speeds leadership development and produces measureable results in organizational growth, strength, and productivity. In May 2010, the Mentoring Project became a part of the LA Gay and Lesbian Community Center’s new leadership LAB (learn-act-build), and Fleischer joined the staff of the Center to direct the LAB. In his new role, Fleischer now supervises the Vote for Equality project and may manage other leadership development projects at the Center.

Underwriting This Report

The LGBT Mentoring Project covered the costs associated with this report. The primary expense was Fleischer’s time and that of other Mentoring Project consultants and staff. Fleischer volunteered to write this report, taking it on in addition to his regular responsibilities with the Mentoring Project. Fleischer did not participate in the No on 8 campaign. None of the Mentoring Project donors live in California, none of them were active in the Prop 8 campaign, and none participated in the decisions examined in this report.

David Fleischer

Prior to creating the LGBT Mentoring Project in 2007, Fleischer created and ran the national training program for the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Foundation (1993–1998) and created and directed the organizing and training department of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (1999–2006). Over the past seventeen years, Fleischer has been directly involved in thirty-eight ballot measures on LGBT community issues in twenty states; Fleischer trained leaders, solved problems, raised money, expanded the campaign team, focused operations, and sometimes simply helped the local campaign team get the work done.

Fleischer also in 2006–2008 was part of the Industrial Areas Foundation team that increased African-American and Latino voter turnout in parts of Ohio that had previously suffered from persistently low voter turnout.

Fleischer received his BA from Rice University (1977, magna cum laude) and his JD from Harvard Law School (1980).