Activist works for safe schools, coalition building in Genesee

By Jim Larkin

GENESEE COUNTY - Terri Dinsmore figures she has tacked about 4,000 miles on her car while doing volunteer work for the Genesee County PFLAG - not an easy thing to do when her income, since the former teacher left the Saginaw School District in December 2008, has been limited to whatever odd jobs she can get.

But there are important things that drive Dinsmore, who was elected the chapter's PFLAG president on March 14.

"I like to help other people who are struggling with issues," said Dinsmore, who takes over the seat that has been vacant since Allen Biles stepped down as president last year.

A PFLAG member since 2004, she has been the chapter's vice president since 2006 and has been perhaps its most visible member - serving on the Flint Out N About committee, doing presentations at Flint's numerous colleges and attending meetings of the Flint/Genesee County Hate Crimes Task Force.

She takes her commitment to the area's LGBT community seriously, noting that Genesee County's chapter also serves people in neighboring Shiawassee, Lapeer and Oakland counties, with the closest PFLAG chapters being in Livingston County and the Tri-Cities area of Saginaw, Midland and Bay City.

"I think it's important to have something like PFLAG for people to get support," said the 40-year-old Montrose area resident. "And for the younger people, it serves as a social outlet."

Dinsmore knows that well. She joined Genesee County's PFLAG because it was a good social outlet for her at a time when she didn't know of any other place to meet other gay people. Since then, she has championed numerous causes, with her goals as the new president being to strengthen and continue the work of the Genesee County Safe Schools Coalition, increase the membership from its current 14 paying members and reaching out to more middle school, high school and college students.

The chapter's monthly meetings are at 2 p.m. the second Sunday of every month at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Flint and include a speaker and confidential support groups for gay, transgendered and straight members. The ages range from high school students to senior citizens.

For more information, go to or e-mail

MI Marriage Trial

Michigan Same Sex Couples Demand Respect And Equal Treatment

Michigan Leaders React To Feds Recognition Of Marriages

MI Marriage: Schuette Asks For Full Appeals Court Review

The Stay Delayed Allows 315 Couples To Wed In State

Gay Marriage Defines Schuette's Reelection Campaign

Snyder Says Schuette Going Against Trend

Sixth Circuit Continues Stay

Michigan Marriage Ban Struck Down

Michigan Makes History With First Marriages

Elected Officials, Advocates Petition Schuette To Drop Marriage Aappeal

Pictures from Ingham County - Getting Married

Pictures from Oakland County Clerk's Office - Part 1

Pictures from the Oakland County Clerk's office - Part 2

Pictures from the Oakland County Clerk's Office - Part 3

Pictures from Washtenaw County

White Nationalist Group Files Brief Supporting AG's Appeal In Marriage Ruling

Discredited Witness Part Of Right-Wing Cabal

Schauer Celebrates Overturn Of Michigan Marriage Ban

Equality Michigan Circulating Petition to Drop Appeal

Why Are Governor Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette Wasting Michigan Taxpayer Dollars On A Costly Appeal?

Michigan Marriage Ban Co-Author Goes 'Moral'

BTL's Wedding Expo: Like Pride in April

Snyder Says Marriages Invalid

Elected Officials, Advocates Petition Schuette To Drop Marriage Appeal

Request To Remove Stay Based On Process And Substance

Schuette Lies To Satisfy Political Base

DOCUMENTS: The decision, the stay, and more

BREAKING: Holder Asked To Recognize Michigan Marriages

Michigan Marriage Ban Ruled Unconstitutional

BREAKING: Sixth Circuit Court Of Appeals Issues Temporary Stay On Michigan Case

BREAKING: Same-Sex Couples Across Michigan Get Hitched

BREAKING: Judge Friedman Declares Michigan's Same-Sex Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

Judge Could Rule Late Today In Mich. Marriage Ban

Michigan Marriage Trial: And Now We Wait

Editor's Viewpoint: Our Long Journey To Justice

Federal Marriage Case Decisions Outside Michigan In Circuit Court of Appeals

Peers Distance Themselves As Regnerus Takes The Stand

Marriage Supporters, Protestors Brave Cold At Courthouse

Highlights From Michigan Same-Sex Marriage Hearing

Brown Says Schuette Instructed Clerks To Defy Court

Michigan Marriage Equality Trial Begins Second Week

Marriage Equality Trial Opens : Science v. Fear

Michigan Marriage Center Prepares State For The Possibility!

Michigan Marriage Case Begins

A Trial Full of Experts: Incredible and Not So Credible, In Hazel Park Case

like us on facebook follow us on twitter follow us on google+