President Joe Bertolino and Bil Leiplod

Lyndon President and Partner to Give Presentation

Teaching about Tolerance and Openness

March 11, 2015

Lyndon State College President Joe Bertolino and his partner of 21 years, Bil Leipold, have traveled the country as trainers and consultants to enlighten college audiences on matters of diversity, tolerance, and assorted higher education leadership concerns. Leipold is associate dean of academic programs and student services at Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice. Their relaxed and nonthreatening style enables people to focus on inherent similarities rather than differences.

On March 19, Bertolino and Leipold will perform the program “When the Gays Move into the Neighborhood” at 7 p.m. in the Alexander Twilight Theatre. It is sponsored by Lyndon FAIR (Promoting Fairness, Awareness, Inclusion, and Relationships in our community) as part of Lyndon State’s on-going Year of Social Justice events and is free and open to the public.

The show is a funny, interactive, and challenging program to get students to confront important community issues such as diversity appreciation, homophobia, and heterosexism. It is also one of the reasons Bertolino has been named one of the nation’s best diversity speakers. A survivor of a hate crime in his younger years, Leipold feels an obligation to give back and offer support to the LGBTQA community and underrepresented individuals. He has taught a hate crime class at Rutgers and provides training and consulting services on homophobia and social justice. During the program, the pair explores the realities and human dimensions of living in a world of heterosexual privilege. They draw examples from their own life, experiences as fraternity men and student affairs professionals, family experiences, and the dynamics in their own relationship.

Lyndon’s Lecture and Arts Series is sponsored by Hayes Ford; Vermont Broadcast Associates is the media sponsor. Lyndon State College’s Lecture and Arts Series is made possible in part by the Harriet M. Sherman Lecture Fund.

Lyndon’s President Bertolino has designated 2014-2015 as the Year of Social Justice at the College. Additional events for this spring include the exhibition of Scott Bakal’s “Illustrations” at the Quimby Gallery beginning with the March 26 opening reception; a March 31 panel discussion on “The Media and Social Justice” with four members of the Vermont-based press corps; and a showing of the film Mirrors of Privilege: Making Whiteness Visible followed by a discussion on Wednesday, April 15 at 6 p.m.

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