Rev. Dr. Cynthia "Cindi" Love is an ordained minister and human rights activist and advocate, author and award-winning entrepreneur. She has also served as Executive Dean in one of the largest community college systems in the United States and Executive Director of the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), a denomination run predominantly by and for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. In this position, Love was the denomination's chief operating officer and business manager; she was thus one of the denomination's top leaders and played a role in the spiritual lives of LGBT Christians around the world. Love has also served on the "Faith and Religion Council" for the Human Rights Campaign. She developed the Would Jesus Discriminate? Campaign (www.wouldjesusdiscriminate.com) and wrote a book by the same title. Most recently she has been appointed as Executive Director of Soulforce, Inc. (www.soulforce.org), a long-tenured not-for-profit organization co-founded by Rev. Dr. Mel White and Gary Nixon.
A native of Abilene, Texas, Love holds Bachelor of Science in Education from Abilene Christian University, a Master of Arts from Louisiana Tech, and a Doctorate in Educational Administration from Texas Tech University. She applied her educational training to using technology in the classroom and to forming community-school partnerships; her efforts were recognized by the Texas legislature and by Governor Ann Richards. She was later named the Executive Dean of Brookhaven College in Dallas, Texas.
Love also spent many years in the business sector, founding such companies as Ecommune, a business intended for advising Fortune 500 companies and technology ventures in Israel, School Vision of Texas, INC 500 member C.H. Love & Co., New Mexico Information Systems, and ICSS, Inc., which was acquired by The Toro Company in 1996 for which she guided a project that created a world-wide Intranet network, and served as both director of customer service systems and manager of global customer information systems. From Toro she moved on to other projects, including being the CEO of Friendly Robotics (USA). Her experience with technology was also called upon by NASA and by the Texas legislature. For her business work, she was named one of the "Top 50 Entrepreneurs" in North America by Inc. Magazine, MIT and YEO in 1990. She has served on numerous not-for-profit boards and committees for educational, business, and LGBT interests.
Love grew up in the Church of Christ denomination, was active in city-wide ministry programs from a young age, and married a minister from the church, but transferred to a Southern Baptist church after her divorce in 1981. She was also active in local advocacy groups on issues regarding rehabilitation and disability services, workplace discrimination and HIV/AIDS issues. She has been the director of one of the West Texas Rehabilitation Center's advocacy programs for 26 years.
After leaving Toro in 2000 and while working at Brookhaven, Love began serving on the MCC Board of Administrators. During this time, she completed her credentials for ordination in the denomination and took an interim post at MCC of Greater Dallas. Between January 2005 and May 2009, Love served as the Executive Director for the MCC denomination. After that she continued as a part-time minister with a local church in Abilene, Texas.
Love is also the author of Would Jesus Discriminate? The 21st Century Question. This book is part of a broader campaign to prompt churches to consider the ways that religious attitudes against homosexuality may contribute to wider discrimination against gays and lesbians. Although the campaign began in 2006, it continues to influence the discussion; news articles from 2009 show that churches are still hosting "town halls" on the issue in places like Anchorage, Alaska, and that people are still using the slogan at marriage-equality rallies in Bloomington, Indiana, and in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She is also responsible for the compilation of 40 Years of Faith, Hope & Love, a historical reflection on the ground-breaking work of Metropolitan Community Churches worldwide.
Love has two children from her first marriage. In 2005 she married her partner of 30 years, Sue Jennings in Canada after the country introduced legislation permitting same-sex marriages. Jennings and Love own the Natural Food Center in Abilene, Texas.
(This biographical statement provided by Cindi Love based from a Wikipedia entry.)
Biography Date: April, 2010
MCC | White, Mel | Soulforce | Clergy Activist