1355: The Sandy, Utah Rainbow Flag Revolution – Willy & Kristy Donahoo and Cynthia Phillips
October 19, 2020
For the past two years a predominantly LDS neighborhood in southeastern Sandy, Utah (known as “Autumn Ridge”) has been flying an unusually large number of rainbow flags during PRIDE week to show their support for fellow LGBTQ community members. Last week, a faithful, non-LGBTQ-affirming Latter-day Saint neighbor in this community sent a somewhat self-righteous, pretentious, and cowardly letter to his/her fellow LDS neighbors, questioning their faithfulness to the LDS Church due to their flying of these rainbow flags. In response, a wonderful, faithful LDS Church member and neighbor named Cynthia K. Phillips penned a courageous, thoughtful response to this letter, which can be accessed here.
Today we interview the two founders of the “Project Rainbow” initiative in the Autumn Ridge section of Sandy, Utah: Kristy and Willy Donahoo. We also interview Cynthia Phillips, who is an active, believing member of her local LDS ward, and who fervently supports this initiative.
Kristy Donahoo is a financial advisor and partner with Ray LeVitre CFP at Net Worth Advisory Group. Much of Kristy’s career spanned over 20 years in executive management positions in Northern California/Silicon Valley with high tech and early internet companies. When she relocated to Utah, she was personally recruited by Utah’s Governor Michael O. Leavitt to lead the state’s hosting and business development programs for the 2002 Olympics. She later went on to teach in a highly regarded private Utah school prior to becoming a financial advisor. Kristy and her husband moved to Utah from California about 20 years ago. They enjoy Utah for its people, the four seasons and proximity to their four adult children. She and her family enjoy beach time in California and Hawaii during summers and snow sports during Utah winters. Kristy serves on the Advisory Board of the John Williams Encircle Home in Salt Lake City, a resource center for at-risk LGBTQ+ youth and their families.
William Donahoo is an attorney with Donahoo & Associates, PC representing clients in civil litigation matters including labor and employment, class actions and complex litigation. Prior to working in the legal sector, William has over 20 years of senior executive experience in the software, technology and internet sectors. William holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science, a Master of Business Administration and was admitted to the California Bar after successfully completing California’s Legal Apprenticeship program and passing the California Bar in 2018. He is admitted to practice in California State courts and various United States Federal courts. In addition to being a member of the Orange County Trial Lawyers Association, the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles and the California employment Lawyers Association, William serves with his wife Kristy on the Advisory Board of the John Williams Encircle Home in Salt Lake City, Utah, a resource center for at-risk LGBTQ+ youth and their families. William lives in Utah with his wife and four children.
Cynthia Phillips has been a teacher and administrator in secondary schools for the past 35 years during which she has taught Latin, History, English Language Arts, and Ancient Greek. Cindy is currently a secondary teacher at the Weilenmann School of Discovery, a public charter school located in Park City, UT, where she also served as the Executive Director for many years. During her career, she has never allowed administrative assignments take her fully out of the classroom because teaching and students are her love and passion. Prior to her administrative and teaching positions at the Weilenmann School, Cindy was an administrator and teacher at the Waterford School, a private school located in Sandy, UT. Cindy is currently a member of the governor-appointed Utah State Charter School Board, a member of the Utah Professional Practices Advisory Commission, a member of the Lone Peak Hospital Board in Draper, UT, and a former member of the Northeastern Utah Educational Services Board. Cindy holds a BA in Latin from Brigham Young University, an MA in Classics from Tufts University, an MA in History from the University of Utah, and she is currently a PhD candidate in Comparative Languages and Cultural Studies at the University of Utah. Cindy and her husband, Greg, reside in Sandy, UT and Heber, UT. They have five children and fourteen grandchildren.