Who we are

RWF volunteers visiting Children at Project Safe Passage in Guatemala City, Guatemala.

RWF volunteers visiting Children at Project Safe Passage in Guatemala City, Guatemala.

Founded in 2000, Rainbow World Fund is the world's first and only all-volunteer, LGBTQ-based humanitarian aid organization. RWF works to help people affected by natural disasters, hunger, poverty, disease, oppression and war by raising awareness in, and funds from, the LGBTQ community to support both LGBT and non-LGBTQ people locally and around the world. RWF has donated nearly $4.5 million in humanitarian aid such as financial grants, food, water, medicine, medical equipment, and art and school supplies.

RWF is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization EIN: 94-3372560.

RWF’s mission is to promote peace, unity and hope by leading the LGBTQ movement in participating in humanitarian relief efforts.

RWF's aim is to promote world peace, unity and hope by helping people in need while increasing positive visibility of the LGBTQ movement. RWF serves those most in need, regardless of race, religion, political belief or sexual orientation.


Empowerment - RWF supports programs that foster rapid independence, self-reliance and self-determination while respecting cultural and community traditions.
Sustainability - RWF supports programs that can endure beyond Rainbow World Fund's involvement.
Peacemaking - RWF supports programs that promote tolerance and understanding of differences among people and cultures.
Measurable Impact - RWF supports programs that demonstrate consistent positive impact.

 Jeffrey A. Cotter - Founder-President
A psychiatric social worker specializing in trauma recovery and HIV/AIDS case management. Cotter practices in San Francisco, California. Cotter has worked in the HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ civil rights fields since 1987.
Education: Bachelor of Science, Management Information System, 1985, Old Dominion University; Masters of Social Work, 1990, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He was made a Distinguished Alumnus of Old Dominion University in 2011.

Michael Gray - Treasurer
Michael is a Certified Public Accountant who has been in private practice since 1989. He has served on Boards of San Francisco nonprofits for the past 25 years including Under One Roof since its start and Project Inform for 6 years. He has been committed to dealing with LGBTQ issues and the fight against AIDS for nearly thirty years. His duties are spelled out in our bylaws, and include attending meetings of our board of directors and voting on board decisions.
Education: Bachelor of Science, Accounting, Santa Clara University, 1977; Masters of Science, Taxation, Golden Gate University, 1983. 

Karen N. Kai - Secretary
An independent research and writing consultant, Kai is a community activist who has served on the boards of local, statewide and national Asian American, civil and human rights organizations. She is a former Chairperson of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and served as co-chair of its LGBTQ Advisory Board.
Education: Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, San Francisco State University, 1975; J.D., University of San Francisco, 1978.

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Joe Trummer - Board Member
Joe is a chemical engineer with a culinary background and works in research and development in the commercial food industry. Joe has served on the board (one year as president) of his 300 unit co-op apartment building in Chicago and contributed to several committees in their efforts to revitalize the Edgewater Beach Apartments. Joe is excited to be part of the Rainbow team and looks forward to expanding Rainbow’s efforts to help those in need.
Education: B.S in Chemical Engineering Michigan State University 1983, M.S. in Chemical Engineering Georgia Institute of Technology 1987.

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Javier Rivera-Rosales - Board Member
Javier is a native San Franciscan, born and raised in the Mission. He has over 8 years of experience working within the non-profit sector. Previously the Director of Positive Images, a non-profit serving the needs of LGBTQ+ youth and young adults, in Sonoma County. Program development, community/event organizing, and using love to balance the hate in our communities are a few of his skills. Some of his passions are: social justice through dance and spoken word, connecting with and nurturing mother nature, and providing space for others to be who they truly are.
Education: Bachelor of Science, Psychology, Deans Honors, Sonoma State University.

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Yew-Hoe Tan - Board Member
Yew-Hoe is a licensed architect with more than 27 years of experience with a special interest and passion for sustainable design. He has served on the Board at the Metropolitan Community Church of San Francisco. Born and raised in Malaysia, he has lived and worked in Latin America, where he learnt Spanish and has been a volunteer and supporter of Rainbow World Fund since 2006.
Education: Bachelor of Arts, major in Architecture, Magna Cum Laude. Washington University in Saint Louis. 1985, Masters in Architecture. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 1989

Jim McBride - Advisory Board Member
Jim brings to RWF more than 30 years of marketing, communications and fundraising experience. Jim is has been the Development Director of the AIDS Legal Referral Panel since 2003, and previously held positions with UCSF Alliance Health Project and Shanti. For profit stints include Bozell Worldwide, Design Media and The Ideas Group.
Education: Bachelor of Liberal Arts, General Arts & Sciences, Penn State University, 1981; Development Director Certification, University of San Francisco Institute for Non Profit Management, 1994.  

Lisa Capaldini, MD, MPH - Advisory Board Member
An Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at UCSF, Capaldini has been in private practice in Internal Medicine with an emphasis on care of people with HIV disease since 1988. Capaldini's areas of interest include quality of life, the doctor-patient relationship and treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders in the primary care setting.
Education:  Baccalaureate of Arts, History of Ideas, 1978, Williams College; Masters of Public Health, 1982, University of California, Berkeley; M.D., 1982, University of California, San Francisco.

Sister Jeannine Gramick, IBVM, PhD - Advisory Board Member
A reform-minded Roman Catholic nun, activist and co-founder of New Ways Ministry - helping LGBTQ Roman Catholics in the United States - Sister Jeannine began working with gays and lesbians in 1971. In 2000, Gramick and New Ways co-founder Father Robert Nugent were ordered by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (under then - Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, recently resigned Pope Benedict XVI) to cease ministering to gays and lesbians due to the Church’s teaching that same-sex relationships are sinful. While Nugent formally acquiesced to the decision by resigning from New Ways, Gramick respectfully set aside the order altogether. Gramick is the author of several books on LGBTQ Catholic issues. The documentary In Good Conscience details her journey of activism, the Vatican’s attempt to silence her and her decision to disregard that attempt.
Education: Doctorate in Mathematics Education from the University of Pennsylvania.