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For Immediate Release: Following a National Search Equality Texas Names Ricardo Martinez Chief Executive Officer
Posted on November 21, 2019 at 12:37 pm

Angela Hale, Equality Texas, 512.289.2995

Following a National Search Equality Texas Names Ricardo Martinez Chief Executive Officer

Ricardo will be Joining us From Phoenix, Arizona on December 1

Austin, TX, November 15, 2019 – Equality Texas, the largest statewide organization solely dedicated to securing full equality for LGBTQ Texans today announced Ricardo Martinez as the new Chief Executive Officer of Equality Texas. He is a gay, bilingual, Mexican American and a recognized LGBTQ leader by the Obama Administration.  He will move from Phoenix, Arizona to Texas to become Chief Executive Officer on December 1, 2019.

“The enormity of this moment does not escape me. I stand in gratitude for every experience that has prepared me to assume the role of Chief Executive Officer for Equality Texas. I’m incredibly grateful to the Equality Texas boards and staff for granting me the opportunity to lead an organization with such a rich history protecting and expanding the rights of LGBTQ Texans. I’m excited to be of service to Equality Texas, build on this incredible legacy, and meaningfully contribute to develop communities where change is not only possible but sustainable over time,” said Ricardo Martinez, Incoming CEO of Equality Texas.

Ricardo was called early in his professional life to a career as an advocate for equity and inclusion. He has fifteen years of nonprofit fundraising, organizing, advocacy, and organizational leadership experience. He will join Equality Texas from Stand for Children where he has been leading a national organizing and constituent engagement effort for the last five years. Immediately prior to his tenure at Stand for Children, he spent several years with GLSEN; initially as Senior Manager of Field Services on the national team in NYC and later as the President of the Phoenix Chapter. GLSEN Phoenix, under Ricardo’s leadership, was an instrumental coalition partner in overturning Arizona’s “no promo homo” law, which prohibited K-12 schools from including LGBTQ representation, content, and history in their curriculum.

“Ricardo Martinez has been a proven and effective leader with local and national LGBTQ organizations. He understands that leadership begins with listening, and that real change comes from inclusion and standing united to defend the rights of every Texan. Equality Texas is thrilled to work with him to realize his exceptional vision for our organization and for a State in which all enjoy true equality both in our laws and in our lived experiences,” said Holt Lackey, Chair of the Board of Equality Texas.

“We are pleased to announce Ricardo Martinez as Equality Texas’s new Chief Executive Officer,” said Elizabeth Myers, Chair of the Equality Texas Foundation Board.  “Ricardo is a visionary leader who is the true embodiment of the American dream. He immigrated from Mexico to the United States at the age of six.  He grew up spending some nights as a child sleeping on the floor of a tiny New York apartment but that did not deter him from dreaming of a brighter future for him and his family. But after years of hard work, perseverance, dedication, and exceptional leadership in many different executive positions, he is extremely well-positioned to lead Equality Texas into the future.”

“We also want to thank Acting CEO Angela Hale for her outstanding stewardship of the organization during her tenure, including planning and executing the 30th Anniversary Celebration while we conducted our national search,” said Myers. “We appreciate Angela’s many years of dedicated service to Equality Texas and are pleased that she will continue to lead our legislative and communications strategy at the Capitol as a talented and formidable advocate for the LGBTQ community,” added Lackey.

Ricardo has an undergraduate degree from Stony Brook, and a master’s degree in nonprofit management from The New School in NYC.


Equality Texas is the largest statewide organization working to secure full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Texans through political action, education, community organizing, and collaboration. The Equality Texas Foundation works to secure full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer Texans through education, community organizing, and collaboration.