Executive Director, Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network
Eliza Byard, executive director of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN), got an early start on her career when she began working as an intern at WNET, a public television station in New York City, at age 13. “I had the incredible experience of working with Bill Moyers for a number of years,” she says, “someone who has built his career around fostering ‘the conversation of Democracy’ across lines of community and ideology. GLSEN’s work is about bringing people together to create safer schools for all by eliminating anti-LGBT bias and behavior.” The daughter of a schoolteacher who joined GLSEN in the early 1990s, and a filmmaker with a PhD in United States history, Byard worked in research and documentary film production before moving to nonprofits. As GLSEN’s deputy executive director from 2001 to 2008, she spearheaded all of GLSEN’s programmatic work, including the development of theThinkB4YouSpeak national Ad Council campaign which addresses the issue of anti-LGBT language and bias in schools.