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Meet the C4 Board

Meet the Equality NC C4 Board

Candis Cox (she/her)

Candis Cox joined Equality NC’s C4 board in 2016, where she serves as the secretary as well as sitting on the executive committee. Candis also sits on the board of the LGBT Democrats of Wake County and previously on the board of The Crape Myrtle Festival. Candis hold a BA in Sociology from NC State university. Candis has worked helping to develop inclusion policies for numerous Triangle and national organizations. As the sole transgender person to have met with Gov. McCrory regarding HB2, Candis has received significant media attention, which she uses to educate others on the need for inclusion and improving the lives of transgender individuals. She has been featured on outlets such as CNN and MSNBC, lending a transgender voice and perspective to issues. Candis’ personal time is spent enjoying the two things she loves, her family and travel.


Frank Dorsey (he/him)

Frank D. Dorsey, II joined the Equality NC C4 Board in 2020. Dorsey is the Associate Director of Student Engagement at Johnson C. Smith University, where he is responsible for coordinating comprehensive engagement programs that create intentional opportunities for students to identify and enhance their leadership potential. Furthermore, he assists with efforts to create a more inclusive campus through policies and initiatives. Aside from overseeing the University student union, he provides leadership to JCSU student programs, including student government, student activities, intramural/club sports, Greek Life, and civic involvement. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff and received his Master of Science in college student personnel from Arkansas Tech University. He is currently a doctoral student in the Leadership Studies program at North Carolina A&T State University.

Recognizing the need for LGBT resources & assistance on historically Black college and university campuses, Dorsey partook in both the Young Black Gay Men’s Leadership Initiative and the Human Rights Campaign’s HBCU Leadership Summit. In Charlotte, he participated in the Community Building Initiative’s Leaders Under 40 Program to link him with compatible leaders, who are also passionate about the achievement of inclusion and justice for all. Beyond his responsibilities at Equality NC, Frank is a board member with the Carolina CARE Partnership and Charlotte Black Pride. When not serving the local community, he enjoys outdoor recreation, photography, and spontaneous trips home to Arkansas. “#StopPretendingHashtagsAreTheSameAsDoingSomething” – Shonda Rhimes


Elinor Landess (she/her)

Elinor Landess is the Chair of the Equality NC C4 Board and has served on ENC’s board since 2015. She is a native North Carolinian, born and raised in the Charlotte area, but now calls Durham home. Elinor received a BA from Davidson College and an MA in higher education from Michigan State University. After working in K-12 education, non-profits, and higher education, she now serves as the director of the Campus & Community Coalition, a cross-sector coalition in Chapel Hill. Elinor brings a focus on younger members of the LGBTQ+ community to the ENC board, and is energized by the strength inherent in intersectional movements in the South. "As the South goes, so goes the nation." -W.E.B. DuBois


Tracy Ward (she/her)

Tracy L. Ward joined the Equality NC C4 Board in 2017 and is in her first term as Chair of the Board Development Committee. Tracy works full time as a Director, Talent Acquisition with The Fresh Market and holds additional offices with service organizations in her community.

She holds a Bachelor of Science from Winston Salem State University in Winston Salem, NC and started her professional career in behavioral health care, overseeing inpatient psychiatric units in NC, SC, and MS. Tracy obtained a Master of Science degree from East Carolina University in Greenville, NC and shortly after shifted her career focus. Over the last 14 years, Tracy's professional leadership experience has been in corporate HR with a specialty in Talent Acquisition and Employee Engagement. She joined the Board to have a voice for the LGBTQ community in the fight for equality.


Irving Zavaleta (he/him)

Irving Zavaleta is a well-known and highly regarded leader, educator and speaker with in-depth knowledge and experience in the areas of inclusion and equity. Irving has first hand experience and knows best practices for working with underrepresented populations including students of color, LGBTQIA communities and first-generation college students.

Irving currently directs the social justice initiatives at the Pro Humanitate Institute (PHI) at Wake Forest
University. PHI works to sustain authentic relationships with local and global partners as they work with Wake
Forest students, faculty and staff to encourage deep academic learning; foster transformative civic engagement; and, address community-identified needs in order to build more meaningful lives and a more just world. Irving previously worked as the Assistant Director and Latinx Community Coordinator at Guilford College in the Multicultural Education Department.

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