[Ed. Note – qnotesstaff is proud to introduce our new associate editor of arts and entertainment, Leah Cagle. We hope each of our readers have the chance to interact with Leah and we’ve invited her to introduce herself as she begins her work with us and you.]

Hi there, qnotes community! My name is Leah Cagle and I am qnotes’ new associate editor of arts and entertainment. I grew up in Asheville — home of gorgeous mountain ranges, hippie communities and (my personal favorite) Rosetta’s Kitchen’s peanut butter-baked tofu. Hailing from such a majestic natural environment and vibrant artistic community instilled in me from an early age a strong appreciation for the special connection between a people and their place.

When I moved to Charlotte in early 2008 to begin my current academic endeavors in English and women’s studies, I was thrilled to discover an equally evident pride and energy between the city and its inhabitants. It was love at first visit! Since then, I have plunged headlong into exploring all the treasures that Charlotte has to offer— visiting delicious restaurants, enjoying the phenomenal music, theatre, and dance venues, passing time wandering through the locally-owned bookstores and marveling at the bright and creative visual art showcases. Making myself at home here in the Queen City has been such a beautiful and easy experience.

The move brought not only a change of scenery, but also a change of heart. Just as I was beginning to learn about the local LGBT movement in my women’s and gender studies classes, an influx of brilliant folks very active in the Charlotte LGBT community entered into my life; the combination of challenging courses and personal conversations sparked a restlessness within me, a desire to speak out. I could no longer stay silent about the injustice and mistreatment surrounding me — I had to do something. It was then that I determined to channel whatever abilities or passions I possessed towards a progressive movement of acceptance and equality for the LGBT community.

Needless to say, I’m beyond excited to have the opportunity through this position to combine my affection for writing and my fascination with art to benefit Charlotte’s LGBT community. It’s a privilege to work alongside a talented team with such drive and I’m eager to dive into learning and promoting the unique vision this paper carries.

And, I’m even more excited to get to know you! I’m looking forward to rubbing elbows with you at volunteer events, shows and performances as we explore the heartbeat of the Charlotte artistic community. qnotes readers sustain the life and energy of this publication — so don’t be shy! If you have ideas, questions, or suggestions, don’t hesitate to send me an email at leah@goqnotes.com or call the qnotes office at 704-531-9988. Many adventures to come, so stay tuned! : :

Leah Cagle

Leah Cagle is QNotes' former associate editor for arts and entertainment. You can reach editor Matt Comer via arts@goqnotes.com or editor@goqnotes.com.