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Safe Zone


Established in 2009, the Concord University Safe Zone program strives to eliminate homophobia, transphobia, and heterosexism on campus by creating and encouraging safe and secure spaces for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, or Questioning (LGBTQ) students, faculty, and staff. This program seeks to identify LGBTQ allies on campus and make it easier for people in need to find them.

Concord faculty, administrators and staff interested in joining the Safe Zone program can do so by completing a short online training covering LGBTQ topics such as hate crimes, purpose of safe zones, definition of terms, and member responsibilities. 

Upon completion of the training, new allies will receive a Safe Zone sticker and be added to the Directory. Each Safe Zone member is expected to attach the Safe Zone sticker to their office door or another highly visible location in their work area. The sticker allows those seeking help or advice to find it without fear.

For current Safe Zone participants, on this website you can find a variety of Faculty Resources for helping our LGBTQ students. Additionally there are Student Resources and information about the Concord Gay-Straight Alliance.

Thank you for your interest in Safe Zone and helping make Concord a safer place for everyone! 

Student Allies
The response to the Safe Zone program has been so positive that our wonderful students also wanted the opportunity to be identified as allies. The following students have completed the Safe Zone training. For privacy reasons we are only including links to their e-mail addresses in this directory. 

Molly Bates

Rachel Bohannan

Cody Boone

Carley Fisher

Damon Frazier

Charles Goss

Ryan Johnston

Sarun Junsiri

Jeremiah Kas

Tyler Kerr

Kelsey Leadman

Reginald Mallory

Cassandra Molchanoff

Garrett Mustard

Marie Owens

Micaela Ramsey

Jordan Robinson

Paul Smith

Hannah Stevens

Jesse Stevens

Lauren Stevens

Laken Sutton

Crystle Taylor

Akintunde Thomas

Charles Wallace

Leanne Watson

Andrew Weiss

Bill Wright

Safe Zone Training

Concord University Faculty, Administrators and Staff

Safe Zone is a way to identify LGBTQ allies in the Concord community and provide those allies, and the people who seek them out, support and information. By designating your office as a Safe Zone, those seeking help or advice can find it without fear or having to justify themselves.

We encourage you to complete this short training and become a Safe Zone for Concord students. Topics covered include the purpose of Safe Zone, LGBTQ hate crimes statistics, common language, and member guidelines. We promise, this training should take no more than 10 - 15 minutes.

After completing the training, you will receive a Safe Zone sticker to be displayed on your office door and be included in the Safe Zone Directory. 

At this time, Safe Zone training is limited to Concord University faculty, administrators and staff. 

CU Gay-Straight Alliance

The mission of the Concord University Gay-Straight Alliance is one of learning, support, understanding, tolerance, and acceptance. The GSA operates under the ethos that every CU experience in diversity is a learning experience. 

The GSA strives to provide a safe and friendly atmosphere in which students may learn and personnel may perform their duties. The GSA provides educational programs and the promotion of tolerance, understanding, and acceptance through social awareness.

Desirous to end the spread of hatred, homophobia, and related harassment and violence, they work diligently to promote unity at Concord and in the community.

The organization is comprised not only of members of the LGBTQ community, but also allies. Allies offer support for the cause and are vital to the GSA success.



Gay-Straight Alliance meetings serve as a common place for Concord's LGBTQ community and a safe place for those who have yet to come out. Anyone is welcome to come to GSA meetings. Many straight ally's come to meetings to support the cause.

Anything discussed in GSA meetings is 100% CONFIDENTIAL. The only reason an outside source would ever be told of someone's presence is if the GSA feel that person may cause harm to themselves or others.

For meeting dates and times, visit the GSA Facebook page.

Our Staff

Allen, Shawn
Shawn Allen
Associate Professor of Social Work
Beasley, Sarah
Sarah Beasley
Vice President of Student Affairs & Dean of Students
Berkey, Jonathan
Jonathan Berkey
Professor of History
Chambers, David
David Chambers
Professor of Biology
Crick, Darrell
Darrell Crick
Professor of Chemistry
Davis, Charlotte
Charlotte Davis
Associate Professor of Management
Fraley, William (Bill)
William (Bill) Fraley
Director of Facilities
Gompf, Michelle
Michelle Gompf
Professor of English/Chair, Department of Humanities
Griffee, Karen
Karen Griffee
Distinguished Professor of Psychology
Hawthorne Allen, Alice
Alice Hawthorne Allen
Professor of Physics, College Dean, and Director for the Center of Teaching and Learning
Howard, Sally
Sally Howard
Department of Social Sciences Chair / Professor of Political Science
Howell, Vanessa
Vanessa Howell
Operations Coordinator
Hudson, Kelly
Kelly Hudson
Associate Professor-Music
Jewell, Eric
Eric Jewell
Assistant Director of Physical Plant Operations
Luff, Tracy
Tracy Luff
Professor of Sociology/Dir. of Honors Program
McKenna, Thomas
Thomas McKenna
Professor of History and Philosophy
Pace, Lori
Lori Pace
Instructor of Criminology
Patricia, Anthony
Anthony Patricia
Associate Professor of English
Pendergast, Joan
Joan Pendergast
Professor of Social Work / Title IX Coordinator
White, James
James White
Professor of Political Science
Whittaker, Sarah
Sarah Whittaker
Distinguished Professor of Social Work
Williams, Susan
Susan Williams
Director of the Beckley Campus and Professor of Marketing
Williams, William
William Williams
Professor of Education
Wise, Darla
Darla Wise
Professor of Biology
Workfield, Khalilah
Khalilah Workfield
Resident Director

Dr. Joan Pendergast
Safe Zone Program Director
Associate Professor of Social Work

Marsh Hall, Room A211
(304) 384-5289

Concord Campus Resources

Student Counseling Center
The Jerry & Jean Beasley Student Center offers free counseling to any Concord student.
Location: Third Floor of The Jerry & Jean Beasley Student Center, Rooms 321 - 325
Hours: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
Phone: (304) 384-5290

Concord Office of Public Safety
Operates 24/7 and is available anytime for emergencies.
Phone: (304) 384-5357
Emergency Phone: (304) 384-9334 or 911
Location: Rahall Technology Center

GSA Contact Information

Adviser: Dr. Joan Pendergast
(304) 384-5289