After 12 years and many significant electoral wins, Chuck Wolfe is resigning as CEO of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, the Washington Blade reports.
Wolfe notified the organization's campaign board via email Wednesday. "After nearly 12 years leading Victory, and countless Election Days, I'm both ready and excited to do something different -- though I can't imagine doing something more rewarding, or working with people whom I respect and admire more," Wolfe writes in the email, obtained by the Blade. He will leave at the end of the year, so he will be with the group through the November election.
Wolfe did not elaborate on the reason for his departure or his plans, and Victory Fund officials declined to comment further to the Blade. However, Wolfe has had some health problems, having suffered a heart attack recently, the paper notes.
Under Wolfe, Victory Fund, which seeks to increase the number of openly LGBT people in elective office, had some major wins, such as the election of out lesbian Annise Parker as mayor of Houston, the nation's fourth-largest city, and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, also a lesbian, as the first out LGBT member of the U.S. Senate.
Wolfe also headed the Victory Fund's sibling organization, the Victory Institute, which provides training for LGBT public officials. The Victory Institute's Presidential Appointments Project, initiated at the beginning of President Obama's first term, led to the appointment of more than 250 LGBT people to federal government positions.
Victory Fund board chair Steve Elmendorf and Victory Institute board chair Debra Shore both praised Wolfe's work. "The board and I are grateful for everything he's done for Victory, but we also understand Chuck's desire to do other things and take on new challenges," Elmendorf told the Blade. Added Shore: "I join my board colleagues in thanking Chuck for his nearly 12 years of service to Victory, and for his vision and relentless focus on results." A search for a new CEO will begin shortly, Elmendorf said.