Capital City Pride is an organization that was founded to provide support to the LGBTQ+ community in Jackson, Mississippi, through the implementation of events throughout the year, including a yearly multi-day Pride Celebration. Capital City Pride has a board of 11 professionals who identify as gay, straight, bi, and non-binary with ages ranging from 23-to 65 and with all socioeconomic backgrounds. Capital City Pride’s mission is to create a community of people with diverse gender identities and sexual orientations who are united, visible, and equal to all Mississippians
An Interview with Executive Director Jason McCarty
What surprised you most during the process of establishing an LGBTQ+ organization here in Jackson, Mississippi?
The pure excitement that people have when we have events, and the number of new people I meet at each one. We have held over 30 events in the last year and a half, and with every event I meet new queer people that I have never seen in Jackson before!”
What has been your greatest success as an organization thus far? Our inaugural Pride Event October 1-3, 2021, held in Jackson, was attended by over 2,000 people and helped raise $50,000 for our beneficiary, Grace House.
I was most proud of how we were able to create such a safe place for our community during Covid-19. We held Covid Vaccination events bi-monthly up to the event, and rapid testing was required in order to participate. I truly believe we have set the standard for having large-scale events in Mississippi during Covid-19.
How has the Alliance helped Capital City Pride?
I was excited to have Capital City Pride join the Alliance. In my capacity as Executive Director, I have joined the Nonprofit Professionals Fundraising Executives, which has allowed me to meet fellow Executive Directors in our state to help collaborate and engage, which has turned into a few amazing new friendships. The Alliance helped coordinate training for our Board of Director’s that included bylaw development and Robert’s Rules of Order. I am grateful about this new partnership with the Alliance, and excited for the future of Capital City Pride!
The Alliance enters this season of reflection and gratitude, deeply appreciative of the support from our many members, supporters, and friends.
The Phil Hardin Foundation in Meridian was chartered in 1964 with the charge to “improve the education of Mississippians.” For nearly six decades, we have strived to be a catalyst for educational opportunity and community improvement in Mississippi through innovative leadership and productive partnerships.
This summer, I joined thought leaders from Mississippi and across the country in the FutureGood Studio’s futurism training program. It was transformational. This experience redefined my outlook, both professionally as a nonprofit leader and on a personal level. It fundamentally altered the way I approach work and staff engagement and envision the future for both myself and the clients we serve.