Daniel J. Downer is a community activist and advocate, facilitator, and public speaker with a long history of advocating for Black and Brown LGBTQ+, racial, and social movements in Central Florida.
For the past decade, Daniel has combined his lived experience with his educational and professional expertise to create movements in Central Florida addressing diversity, health equity, inclusion, and racial and social equity.
Daniel currently serves as the Executive Director of The Bros in Convo Initiative, a Black Queer-led community organization in Orlando educating and empowering gay and queer individuals of color through comprehensive health education, linkage, and peer support. He also is a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Consultant for The Equality Institute, a boutique DEI firm providing relevant, impactful, and comprehensive solutions to organizations to help build and strengthen their strategy to infuse diversity and inclusion into the culture, enhancing outcomes for everyone.
He sits on the Board of Directors of RAHMA, a Black Muslim-led organization addressing HIV/AIDS in faith communities through education, advocacy, and empowerment. The Grants Committee of Contigo Fund, is a philanthropic effort to strengthen and network existing agencies and to identify and support grassroots efforts that advance Latinx and LGBTQ causes and the intersection of these two communities. And the Board of Directors of One Orlando Alliance, a vital support network for LGBTQ+ organizations in Central Florida. Daniel is the co-creator and Advisory Council Member of the Black Boardroom Leadership Institute, a one-of-a-kind leadership training program that brings together both nonprofit organizations and leaders with a goal to guide culture change and create an ideal environment of inclusion of diverse voices in service to boards.
In acknowledgment of his commitment to health, racial, and social equity, Daniel was honored by GLAAD in 2018 with the Rising Star Award, in 2019 The Red Door Foundation Leadership Achievement Award, and in 2020 The Demetrick Brown Humanitarian Award by Metro Inclusive Health and one of Watermark's Most Remarkable Persons in Central Florida. And the 2021 Recipient of The Orlando Trailblazer Award at the annual Harvey Milk Breakfast & LGBT+ Center Diversity Awards.
Daniel has consistently fought to break down systemic barriers for Black LGBTQ+ and other marginalized communities while fostering meaningful connections, mutual learning, and coalition. Daniel firmly believes in creating a Central Florida where all are welcomed and affirmed and those most marginalized are brought closer to justice and liberation.
"Daniel's ability to translate complex concepts and dynamic storytelling truly helped our grantee partners in identifying ways to reach the next level."
Central Florida Foundation