About Us

The Rainbow Commission was created by the Arlington, Massachusetts, Town Meeting in 2017 (by-law II, article 13). The Commission’s purpose is to promote equality-affirming policies regarding the full spectrum of sexual orientations and gender identities, and bring greater visibility and empowerment to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual (and more) population through education, advocacy, and collaboration with other Town agencies, schools, and community groups.


The Town of Arlington will promote full inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ community in all aspects of Town life.


We are a volunteer group of Arlington residents, appointed by the Town government, to promote full inclusion of LGBTQIA+ individuals and groups through affirming policies and programs, resources, advocacy and community building.


The Commission currently has seven volunteer members: six appointed by the Town Manager and subject to the approval of the Select Board, and one appointed by the School Committee. The December 2018 Special Town Meeting voted to expand the Commission by adding two additional optional Commissioners, to be appointed by the Town Manager when required.

Commissioners: Julia Forsythe (vice-chair, she/her), Bill Gardiner (he/him), Mel Goldsipe (chair, she/her), Brooks Harrelson (he/him), Lisa Krinsky (she/her), Helene Newberg (she/her), and Anna Watson (immediate past chair, she/her)

Volunteer opportunities

Sign up to volunteer or receive email newsletters from the Commission.

More info

2017 Annual Report: https://www.arlingtonma.gov/home/showdocument?id=42864

Report to December 2018 Town Meeting (PDF)

Newsletters: https://tinyurl.com/ArlRainbowNews

All email correspondence with the Rainbow Commission is subject to public review under the Massachusetts Public Records Law.