Rev. Jasmine Beach-Ferrara has declare her bid for public office.

Activist takes on commission run

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — On Nov. 12, Rev. Jasmine Beach-Ferrara announced that she would run for a District 1 Buncombe County Commission seat.

The post is being vacated by Holly Jones who is pursuing a run for lieutenant governor for North Carolina. Primaries are set for March 15, 2016.

A Democrat, Beach-Ferrara as served as founder and executive director of the Campaign for Southern Equality since 2011. Through the organization’s work and others, marriage equality was brought to North Carolina.

She is a Chapel Hill, N.C., native and was raised by her public health nurse mother. Now, she is married to Meghann Burke and they are raising a son. Beach-Ferrara is also an ordained minister for the United Church of Christ.

“As a working mom and a minister, I know firsthand what’s at stake for Buncombe County families right now. But we do not have to accept childhood poverty, struggling schools and soaring housing costs as unalterable conditions in our community. It won’t be easy to solve these local problems. But we can, we must, and I want to help. We need new voices in our political process, a commitment to finding common ground, and a County Commission that reflects our community.”

This is Beach-Ferrara’s first run for public office.


Board welcomes new members

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — SisterCare of Western North Carolina has announced the addition of new members to its board.

MaryLou Alvarado, Rachel Campbell and Kristina Williams joined the board recently and serve in a variety of positions.

Alvarado is a case manager who has spent her career in the dental field. She has previously volunteered at a Ryan White clinic in Chicago, Ill., as well as one on the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico caring for those who had never received dental care. She is married to her wife Christine and they share a dog named Dolce.

Campbell was tapped to be a database manager and is semi-retired. She holds a degree in agriculture, was engaged in outside sales, honed her skills as a woodworker and is now a spoken word poet. On a personal level, Campbell is transgender. She has also been tasked with reworking the organization’s “You Are Not Alone” section of the website

Williams is the new treasurer for SisterCare WNC. Her background is in banking and finance. She has also worked as a massage therapist.


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Does your organization or special interest group have events or great information to share with our readers? If so, be sure to send in your information to In the upcoming months, we’ll feature one of you in our news notes section in each issue. Are you a part of a Meetup, Yahoo or Google group and do you do something that’s really newsworthy? Do you provide a service for the community or hold fundraisers for worthy causes? Do you educate the public about LGBT issues or concerns? Of course, this is only a sampling of things we are interested in. It’s the aim of these pieces to inform, enlighten and educate our readers about what we’re doing here in the Carolinas to champion LGBT rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen is QNotes' former associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director.