COLOURS Board Announces Passing of Robert K. Burns, Exec. Dir.

8 12 2011

From the article, "Hell to Pay" in the Cleveland Scene (click for article)

The following message was posted to the Facebook page of the COLOURS Organization, Inc. concerning the passing of our brother Robert K Burns (36 years old):

The Board of Directors and Staff of the COLOURS Organization, Inc. sadly announce the passing of its Executive Director Robert K. Burns, which occurred Thursday, December 8, 2011.

Robert K. Burns, a Cleveland, Ohio native, served as a leader in Philadelphia’s LGBT community. In the past years, Robert became an integral part of the development of HIV prevention programs and research in Philadelphia for LGBT people of color, specifically African American MSM.

The Board of Directors and Staff members are committed to continuing the passion and dedication to the health and empowerment of LGBT people of color that Robert exemplified.


John F. Clayton Jr.
President of COLOURS Board of Director



Presenting Community Leader Robert K. Burns

6 10 2010

Robert K. Burns has been an early supporter of the Archivists Society, and many other efforts for LGBT people of color (as well as the community at large). According to the COLOURS’ website:

Robert K. Burns, originally from Cleveland, OH, resides in North Philadelphia and recently served as the Deputy Director of the COLOURS Organization and formerly the Director of Mazzoni Center’s Collective Program (a federally funded multi-agency collaborative serving the needs of African American, Latino and Asian/Pacific Islander communities) – both community based non-profits focused on serving the needs of disproportionately impacted sexual minority communities.  Burns is a graduate from Lincoln University with his Master in Human Services with a concentration in counseling as well as 2008 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Association of Schools of Public Health – Institute for HIV Prevention Leadership Fellow.  As an experienced public health/social service professional and community advocate for over 15 years, Burns expertise extends to working with organizations such as the Free Clinic of Greater Cleveland, AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland, BlackOut Unlimited, Brother’s Circle of Cleveland, Black Gay Men’s Leadership Council, Lutheran Children and Family Services (LCFS) and the House of Blahnik.  His knowledge in health prevention planning, program development, advocacy, social services practice, and social justice provide him with an strong foundation working in the human services arena.

In Burns most recent role as the volunteer Interim Executive Director of the House of Blahnik he assisted in development of a comprehensive strategic planning process amongst the 10 city leadership team, and helped facilitate the successful 10 year anniversary event, that raised funds for the annual Blahnik educational scholarship award.  During this time, Burns simultaneously served as the Deputy Director of COLOURS ensuring the administration of a federal project geared towards providing assistance to LGBT re-entry populations.  Burns is one of the founding members of the Black Gay Men’s Leadership Council, a empowerment/advocacy group chiefly responsible for examining the implications of social, political and health discourse amongst African America gay men in Philadelphia.  Burns has served as a member and co-chair of the Philadelphia Prevention Planning group, a group responsible for providing the community voice to health disparities impacting marginalized communities.  Burns has also worked closely with the Department of Human Services as a Youth Care Worker for Philadelphia’s only LGBT group home – Bethel Community.  Burns has maintained an instrumental role through donating his time over the past 10 years as a respected disc jockey across the US working with various community based organizations and Pride organizations.

Robert K. Burns officially started in the capacity of Executive Director on Tuesday, June 15th and is extremely excited about expanding upon the relationships within the LGBT community and partnering allies within Philadelphia.  Please join the Board and COLOURS Team in welcoming and supporting Robert in his new role during our Open House  and reception October 7th beginning at 6pm at COLOURS 112 N. Broad 3rd Floor, following with our night out at Tabu 200 S. 12th Street for Community Thursdays at 9pm [portion of the proceeds to benefit the COLOURS Organization].

Open House in Celebration of COLOURS and New Exec Director, Robert K. Burns, 10/7

6 10 2010

Join The COLOURS Orgainzation, Inc. for an open house and opportunity to meet its Board of Directors and the new executive director, Robert K. Burns. Burns is a dynamic man, and committed soldier in our community. When he’s not in Philadelphia, he’s advising the nation on best approaches to prevent HIV infections among Black gay and bisexual men. He also finds time to serve as a DJ within the Ballroom and House circuit, and at Shampoo Nightclub.

The open house is scheduled for Thursday, October 7, 2010 from 6-8 pm. COLOURS is located at 112 N. Broad Street  in Philadelphia.