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Equality Ohio Director Resigns Quietly After Menacing and Disorderly Conduct Arrest Scandal

Equality Ohio Executive director Ed Mullen has “resigned” after being arrested on the night of Columbus, Pride for Menacing and Disorderly Conduct.

In a joint statement quietly sent out by the Equality Ohio Board yesterday:

Yesterday, Equality Ohio accepted the resignation of Ed Mullen, our Executive Director, effective June 29. Since he joined our staff in January 2011, Ed brought tremendous vitality and keen legal insights to our organization, stabilized our operations and financial support, and led the development of a nationally recognized strategic plan. The boards of Equality Ohio owe a debt of gratitude to Ed for his leadership and we wish him the very best in all his future endeavors

Leadership transition planning is underway. The Equality Ohio boards will appoint an Interim Executive Director very soon and charter a national search to find a new leader who will continue the tremendous gains which have been made in the last year.

Mullen was arrested on  the evening of Columbus Pride, June 16th  when police were called to a disturbance at 231 Buttles Avenue.  Upon arrival Mullen was arguing with the victim and after Columbus Police questioned Mullen the became wary of the answers that they were being given by him,  including the fact that Mullen stated that “he was from Chicago and was in town temporarily”.  Columbus Police decided at that point to take Mullen downtown for further questioning at which point Mullen’s became irrate and turned to the victim calling him a “fucking asshole” and threatening him and asying that “the war was on”.  At that point Mullen was taken into custody, held in jail overnight and later released on his own recognizance pending a pretrial.  Mullen was also issued a  Court Order that reads  ”No further acts of violence as a condition of bond,” and was ordered stay away from the prosecutor’s witness.

It is unclear at this time if alcohol was involved.

Mullen an attorney himself,  will be represented by a public defender and his trial is set for June 28th, 2012.

In a brief statement with WBNS in Columbus  Equality Ohio glosses over Mullens resignation and suggest Mullen was a leader in the marriage equality effort when Mullen himself backed out of the orignal Ohio Freedom To Marry Initiative to take a much slower course.

Equality Ohio has been plagued with many problems over the past years including a revolving door where Executive Directors are concerned having 4 different ED’s in the past 6 years and lack of focus and support from the LGBT communities of Ohio


Will Kohler

Will Kohler is one of America's best known LGBT historians, He is also a a accredited journalist and the owner of A longtime gay activist Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced on such notable media venues as BBC News, CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The Daily Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story. Back2Stonewall has been recently added to the Library of Congress' LGBTQ+ Studies Web Archive. Mr. Kohler is available for comment, interviews and lectures on LGBT History. Contact:

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7 thoughts on “Equality Ohio Director Resigns Quietly After Menacing and Disorderly Conduct Arrest Scandal”

  1. The fact that there have been so many EDs in such a short period of time shows me that the Board of Trustees are the *real* problem here!

    It reminds me of the turmoil happening at David’s House in Toledo in the late 90s/early 00s, when a revolving door was installed in the EDs office.

    The board there was largely to blame for the demise of that agency, too.

    It’s time egos got put on the shelf, drama queens needs to either sit down and shut up or resign themselves of Equality Ohio’s to survive!

  2. Just a quick correction. Equality Ohio has not had issues with its executive director like other state lead advocacy groups. EO has only had 3 ED in its history and one interm.

  3. Doesn’t anyone find it ironic that a statewide organization that is advocating for anti bullying legislation is in the center of this scandal. I hate to be so negative but why did Equality Ohio praise someone that was arrested for assult charges? How could a person making $65,000 a year request a public defender? Questions need to be answered.

  4. Actually, it’s rare for non-profits like this to have long tenures at the top anyway. One of their EDs left because the organization wanted an executive director who would tell the board what to do, but who was used to working more cooperatively, so there was a simple difference in management styles.

  5. EO is making a huge mistake anyway in my opinion trying to follow the HRC organizational style.

    Ohio is a BIG state and far too large for them to have one office in Columbus.

    They should have 3 Co-EO’s one in an office in Cincinnati, Columbus, and Cleveland with 3 Baord members one under each and fill the staff out in each office with volunteers and interns and then all meet bi-weekly. This way each office can cover 1/3 of the state while still working on statewide initiatives.

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