Gay Atlanta non-profit leader dies after surgery

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A gay Atlanta non-profit leader who has led advocacy groups for LGBT people, the homeless and people with HIV has died after complications during surgery.

Living Room announced the death of tis executive director, Chuck Bowen (top photo right), on Wednesday in an email to supporters:

Living Room is deeply saddened to inform you that Executive Director Chuck Bowen passed away on December 21 from complications arising from surgery. Chuck joined Living Room as Executive Director in 2014 and was a passionate champion of Living Room's mission. Following the organization's succession plan, Angela Susten, the Deputy Executive Director of Housing and Planning, has been appointed Acting Executive Director. Information about memorial services will be shared when it is available.

Bowen, from Columbia, S.C., lived in Atlanta. Prior to joining Living Room, he served as executive director of the Central Outreach & Advocacy Center in Atlanta from 2007 to 2013. The group assists the homeless. In 2004, Bowen was hired as executive director of Georgia Equality just weeks ahead of voters approving an amendment to the state Constitution banning gay marriage. Before that, Bowen served as executive director of the Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley in Rochester, N.Y.

Living Room provides subsidized housing, housing referrals and emergency assistance to people and families living with HIV/AIDS. The agency benefits from gay Atlanta fundraisers, including Joining Hearts and AIDS Walk Atlanta. In 2014, the agency received $38,000 from Joining Hearts.

We've reached out to Living Room and will update the post if they respond.

UPDATE | Living Room announced that a memorial service will be held Jan. 10 at 2 p.m. at Central Presbyterian Church.


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