About Us

The Phoenix Center was founded on April 1, 2001 by a group of LGBT teens wanting to create a safe place to meet. For a while they met in a garage and later met at a church. It was then that the 501-c-3 was formed. Eventually they moved to a building at Laurel & 2nd St. and in 2005 bought their current home at 109 E. Lawrence Ave. Since that move, services and groups have expanded extensively.



The mission of the Phoenix Center is to serve as Springfield’s LGBTQ Community Center and provide the highest quality of HIV/AIDS prevention and education to the community as a whole.


  • Jonna J Cooley PhD, Executive Director
  • Ruth Ann Bertram, Education Coordinator
  • Anthony McDonald, Housing Case Manageradvocats work hard for LGBT clients in springfield illinois
  • Nick Bond, MA LPC, Director of Youth Services
  • Tiffany Williams, yOUTh Group Facilitator
  • Cory Blissett, MA, yOUTh Group Facilitator
  • Brennen Bradley, MS, yOUTh Group Facilitator & TranSupport Groups Facilitator
  • Queenie & Mini, AdvoCATs

Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce

Not-For-Profit Executive Director of the Year in 2016!









  • Duane Williams, President
    • Untangled, Owner / Licensed Cosmetologist
  • Maggie Cluck, Vice President
    • School Teacher, District 186
  • Brian Sylvester, Treasurer
    • Vice President, Security Bank
  • Surae Dangerfield
    • Client Representative
  • Kathryn Eisenhart JD
    • Retired UIS Professor, Private Practice Attorney
  • Ryan Greenier
    • Vice President – Head of Corporate Communications / Investor Relations, Horace Mann
  • Megan Poole
    • Social Services, Springfield Clinic
  • Paul Staab
    • Funeral Director, Staab Funeral Home
  • Nancy Thompson
    • Fitness Specialist, Springfield Wellness Center
  • Jean Winn
    • Director – HR Finance, Horace Mann Educators


  • Phil Giger, Walgreens
    • (Board President 2002-2005)
  • John Kerstein, Prairie Property Solutions
    • (Board President 2005-2011, 2014-2015)