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New Book Celebrates Jeanne Manford

As we kick off LGBTQ History Month PFLAG National has brought 13 celebrities together to share a special reading of the new American Psychological Association (APA) children’s book The Mother of a Movement: Jeanne Manford—Ally, Activist & Co-Founder of PFLAG written by Rob Sanders & illustrated by Sam Kalda. Celebrity readers included Dan Bucatinsky, Michael D. Cohen, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ilana Glazer, Meena Harris, Jessica Hecht, Chef Melissa King, Alec Mapa, Max Mutchnick, Kumail Nanjiani, Avi Roque, Daphne Rubin-Vega & Amy Schneider have lent their voices & their affirmation of LGBTQ+ people in the video reading The Mother of a Movement. Brian K. Bond, Executive Director of PFLAG National stated, “In some ways, 2022 was made for people like Jeanne Manford, who was a teacher, a mother & a person who was unable to passively allow government officials to harm her LGBTQ+ child – or anyone else’s. Alongside her LGBTQ child, she founded a movement rooted in love, affirmation & that all LGBTQ+ people deserve dignity and respect. PFLAG National is very proud to partner with the American Psychological Association to tell Jeanne Manford’s story in this way and in this moment.” Frank C. Worrell, PhD, President of the American Psychological Association concluded, “APA's children's books help younger readers navigate life’s challenges & serve as a voice for those who have been marginalized for their differences or shamed for being their true selves. Psychological research has shown that stigma based on sexual orientation can affect children & adolescents & lead to depression, anxiety & self-harm. Mother of a Movement is a beautiful story demonstrating the positive impact of family love, acceptance, inclusion & belonging.” 

Out Boulder County To Honor JVA Inc

Out Boulder County has announced that they will award JVA, Inc. with their 2022 Corporate Changemaker Award in recognition of their full commitment to LGBTQ inclusion demonstrated by their work on employment policies & to create a welcoming & affirming workplace culture. Tom Soell, one of the firm’s principals & Shane White, project engineer will accept the award at the 2022 Gayla on Saturday October 8th at the St. Julien Hotel Terrace in Boulder, Colorado. Mardi Moore, Executive Director of Out Boulder County stated, “JVA, Inc. is deeply committed to LGBTQ equality & inclusion & it shows in their practices as an employer & commitment as a responsible community member. They are a rarity in the corporate & engineering sector. Many LGBTQ people feel unsafe at work making openly affirming & inclusive employers like JVA, Inc. critical.” JVA, Inc. is an engaged & active corporate community leader who participates in community efforts to support LGBTQ people in the Boulder Community & beyond. In addition to Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) representing Young Professionals & their Women’s Innovation Network, JVA, Inc. recently established a LGBTQ ERG that recognizes & enhances diversity & inclusivity for the LGBTQ & Non-Binary communities & allies. For over 25 years Boulder County has been the location for The GAYLA. The evening brings together hundreds of local community members, government officials & non-profit & corporate partners to fundraise to support the services & programs that Out Boulder County provides to the LGBTQ+ community in Boulder & beyond. This year’s Gayla will include remarks on mental health & addiction from songwriter & performer Paul Williams. Williams has won an Oscar, three Grammy Awards, two Golden Globe Awards & has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. 

From The Dinah Red Carpet (AUDIO)

This week I talked with 19 celebrities at The Dinah in Palm Springs, CA. We had a blast chatting with these fabulous women about their music, what they hope to accomplish with their work & how they cope in these challenging times. First I talked with singer-songwriter Cassidy King, then singer-songwriter Riela followed by entrepreneur Nik Kacy who was attending The Dinah for the 20th time. Next Jeopardy! winner Amy Schneider talked about how she would like to see more federal protections for our LGBTQ community. Content provider Breanne Williamson chatted about her first feature film after her short "Coming Out" gained over 2 million views. Then I caught up with Rose Garcia from the Showtime hit “The Real L Word” about the importance of LGBTQ visibility. Next 80s pop icon Taylor Dayne who headlined the Black & White Ball talked about her music & upcoming projects. Then I chatted with Mariah Hanson founder & producer of the 31st Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend who was with her partner Maureen Vanderpool. Next was Canadian rapper Haviah Mighty followed by rapper Siya & then queer pop sensation Zolita. Then I chatted with Cuppie, Haley Grable & Brianna Murphy the stars of “Tampa Baes” the Amazon Prime lesbian reality series. Next up was singer-songwriter IV4 who has signed with Warner Records followed by Siena Liggins who is one of Billboard’s Top Ten new LGBTQ artists of the year. Then DJ Alex D talked about spinning at The Dinah followed by the fabulous artist Melanie Posner who also appears on the hit series “Tampa Baes”. We concluded our coverage with singer songwriter Fletcher who headlined The Hollywood Party & just released her debut album “Girl Of My Dreams” on Capitol Records. LISTEN  

Annual AIDS Walk Boston 37th Year

The 37th annual AIDS Walk Boston takes place both in-person & virtually on Sunday October 2nd at DCR’s Carson Beach in South Boston. The site opens at 8A with the program beginning at 9A & walkers set out at 10A. It’s a 5K route by the seaside to raise much needed support for vital HIV care & services at Fenway Health & AIDS Action. Ellen LaPointe Fenway Health Chief Executive Officer stated, “AIDS Walk Boston brings us together as a community that is united in our shared commitment to ensuring that people living with HIV & AIDS are able to get the care & services they need & to ending the epidemic. This wonderful event, which started in 1986, enables Fenway Health to deliver on our deep commitment to address the disproportionate impact of HIV on traditionally underserved populations including BIPOC people, men who have sex with men, transgender people & people who inject drugs. We are incredibly grateful to the walkers & volunteers who join us every year to raise essential funds for HIV care & services & to raise awareness about HIV. We will walk together until HIV/AIDS is a thing of the past.” Massachusetts Department of Public Health reports that more than 23,000 people are living with HIV in the state. Inequitable healthcare structures cause HIV to continue to disproportionately affect Black & Latinx populations, men who have sex with men & transgender women. Prayer Ribbons a project commemorating lives lost to HIV/AIDS & anti-LGBTQIA+ violence will be on display with Provincetown artist & creator Jay Critchley assisting attendees in adding the names of loved ones. Drag queen Luna Cruz & Cliff Notez will entertain the crowd. 

LGBTQ Palm Center Bids Farewell

After 24 years of researching LGBTQ military service bans the Palm Center will shut its doors Friday September 30th leaving behind a legacy of inclusive policy for our LGBTQ Americans who serve or seek to serve their country in uniform. Dr. Aaron Belkin, Palm Center Founder & Director stated, “Creating & leading the Palm Center has been the pleasure, pride & honor of my life. We worked with brilliant & generous partners, allies, center staff, veterans & service members to show that facts matter, that discrimination undermines our country & that equality makes it better. I’ll be forever grateful for this opportunity to help make the world a little more just.” Admiral Mike Mullen added, “Few organizations figured out how to move the needle on military opinion so effectively as the Palm Center. Its research & policy guidance were invaluable in showing that inclusive service was not complicated & would not harm readiness. The Palm Center reframed the national conversation over LGBT military service, using facts & research to conclusively demonstrate that inclusion makes our armed forces & our country, stronger.” Admiral Al Steinman concluded, “Through its research & outreach the center demolished the idea that LGBT service members would diminish our nation's military readiness, helping pave the way for the repeal of ‘don't ask, don't tell’ & removing the transgender ban.” Though the Palm Center is shutting down day-to-day operations they’ve launched a new website that showcases its accomplishments as well as lessons learned about successful strategies for using research to inform public opinion & achieve social change. 

LGBTQ Horizons Foundation Gala Event

The Horizons Foundation Gala takes place Saturday October 1st at the iconic Fairmont San Francisco Hotel. Horizons is celebrating another year of creating a world where all LGBTQ people live freely & fully. It's a hybrid event so you can attend in person or live stream from your home. This year they’re honoring Chicana Activist Olga Talamante with the Visionary Award & Levi Strauss Foundation with the Leadership Award. Olga Talamante became the first executive director of the Chicana Latina Foundation in 2003 & serves on the boards of the National Center for Lesbian Rights; El Concilio of San Mateo County & the Friends of the Commission on the Status of Women. She is also active with GELAAM, a Latino LGBTQ organization in San Mateo County & with the Latino Forum of the San Francisco LGBT Center. Horizons is the world’s first community foundation of, by & for LGBTQ people that invests in LGBTQ nonprofits, strengthens a culture of LGBTQ giving & builds a permanent endowment to secure our community’s future for generations to come. This fabulous gala event will begin at 6P PST with a reception followed by dinner at 7:30P PST & close with an after party at 9P PST with DJ Ome. Horizons has fought against homophobia, transphobia, racism, sexism & gender inequality for over 40 years. They honor our histories & all those who fought for our communities & simultaneously created a foundation for future generations of LGBTQ people. At the event there will also be a raffle & your ticket will give you a chance to bid on several exciting packages. 

New Film The Black Community & AIDS

The National AIDS Memorial has released its latest mini-documentary “The Black Community & AIDS” the 7th film in its oral history project. The film chronicles the personal stories of nearly two dozen survivors & advocates from across the U.S. who are thriving, sharing their hopes & struggles about the HIV/AIDS epidemic & its disproportionate impact on the Black community. The film opens with powerful words from Phill Wilson, Founder of the Black AIDS Institute who states, “My grandmother used to say, ‘When white people get a cold, black people get pneumonia’ & so I thought…if white people are getting the plague, what in the hell are we going to get?” John Cunningham National AIDS Memorial Chief Executive concluded, “This mini-documentary speaks to the work of the National AIDS Memorial in addressing the impact of HIV/AIDS in the Black community & the issues of stigma, discrimination & otherism that still exist today, four decades into this epidemic. We are so appreciative to the survivors & advocates featured in this film who shared their stories & whose work is helping make a difference in changing the statistics and helping to finally curb the disproportionate impact of this epidemic in the Black community.” “The documentary was recently featured at several major film festivals & HIV/AIDS events throughout the country including Frameline, SF Queer Film Fest, New York City Black Pride, Positive Living Conference & Atlanta Black Pride. The film will also be shown as part of the National AIDS Memorial Change the Pattern initiative that is partnering with Southern AIDS Coalition & Gilead Sciences to bring the AIDS Memorial Quilt to the South as a teaching tool with Quilt displays & programming to reimagine the fight to end HIV. WATCH  

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New Book Celebrates Jeanne Manford

As we kick off LGBTQ History Month PFLAG National has brought 13 celebrities together to share a special reading of the new American Psychol...

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