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Black Transgender Lives Matter

As the world recognizes International Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) on Wednesday November 20th closing out Transgender Awareness Week the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) continues to call upon members of the Black community to show up as accomplices in working to eradicate the epidemic of violence that haunts the lives of Black transgender & gender non-binary people. Kylar Boradus, NBJC Board & Black TAC member states, “Trans visibility is important to trans people & others. We have always been visible in society (cities) & not an anomaly. Trans visibility helps to educate & inform." Van Bailey, Black TAC member added, “Trans people have existed since the beginning of time. We are not new. We are not a trend. We are members of your families & communities. We exist & we are not going anywhere.” Carmarion D. Anderson, Senior Minister & NBJC, Black TAC member concluded, "Trans people have existed through their visibility since the beginning of creation. We cannot erase, ignore, or segregate anyone from this divine form of creation. Recognizing trans-visibility in the world is to recognize the presence of life in everyone, formed in inclusive love." In 2019 there have been 23 reported lives lost to senseless acts of anti-transgender, hate & violence. Of the transgender & gender non-conforming murders that have been reported, at least 20 of those were Black people. There were 19 Black transgender women & one Black gender non-conforming person with hopes & dreams & plans for the future that will not be realized. We mourn & celebrate those we have lost.
For More Info: nbjc.org
Joshua Lyon Talks New Edie Windsor Memoir (AUDIO)
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Trevor Gala Saving LGBTQ Youth

The Trevor Project the largest suicide prevention & crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people hosted their 2019 TrevorLIVE Los Angeles fundraising gala Sunday November 17th at The Beverly Hilton. This year’s honorees were Cybill Shepherd, Hayley Kiyoko & the PwC Charitable Foundation, Inc., which announced a $6 million investment in The Trevor Project’s mission. Zazie Beetz & Sasheer Zamata hosted the event that raised over $1.2 million. Jane Lynch presented the Champion Award to Cybill Shepherd who stated, “My sister did not have the support that these young people will be getting from this wonderful, wonderful organization; & so, I want to thank everyone here tonight, because we all have in our lives people that we would have liked to have saved. My sister lived the life she wanted to live, but she didn’t live it openly. Gladys Terry Shepherd, I thank you from the bottom of my heart, for the honor of being here tonight.” Amit Paley, CEO of The Trevor Project concluded, “There is still so much more to do. We recently put out research that there are more than 1.8 million LGBTQ young people in the US who seriously consider suicide each year. One day, we will reach every single one of those young people in crisis. But we’re not there yet & we don’t have the luxury of growing slowly. We are literally talking about life & death. That is why we need to build a global movement to end suicide among LGBTQ young people NOW." Sponsors of this year’s TrevorLIVE LA were the PwC Charitable Foundation, Inc. & Abercrombie & Fitch. In addition, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants serves as the official hotel partner; & AT&T was the official VIP Reception Sponsor.
For More Info: thetrevorproject.org
Joshua Lyon Talks New Edie Windsor Memoir (AUDIO)
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PFLAG To Honor George Takei

PFLAG National will honor actor & fierce LGBTQ advocate George Takei with the 2019 Betty DeGeneres Advocate Award. The award will be presented at the PFLAG Gives Thanks reception that takes place in NYC on Monday, November 18th. Takei stated, “I am proud & honored to receive the Betty DeGeneres Advocate Award from PFLAG, an organization that has done so much to move equality forward for LGBTQ+ people over the last 46 years. I’m especially grateful for their work within the API community & their commitment to supporting people of Asian & Pacific Islander descent with chapters dedicated specifically to those families.” The Betty DeGeneres Advocate Award honors a person who uses their visibility to help advance PFLAG’s vision of a world where diversity is celebrated and all people are respected, valued & affirmed inclusive of their sexual orientation, gender identity & gender expression. The award is named in honor of DeGeneres, mother of Ellen DeGeneres, a longtime member of PFLAG who has used her public stature to educate about the vital role PFLAG plays in providing parent, family & ally support & affirmation of people who are LGBTQ+. PFLAG National is strongly committed to elevating the voices of people of Asian & Pacific Island descent, particularly those who are or love someone who is LGBTQ+. Takei has long served as a beacon of hope for these PFLAG families, including those who participate in the PFLAG chapters in Southern California & New York dedicated entirely to this community PFLAG is the first & largest organization for LGBTQ+ people, their parents & families, & allies with over 400 chapters & 200,000 members & supporters.
For More Info: pflag.org 
LISTEN: Joshua Lyon Talks New Edie Windsor Memoir
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Memoir "A Wild & Precious Life" (AUDIO)

This week I talked with author Joshua Lyon about Edie Windsor’s memoir “A Wild & Precious Life” published by St. Martin’s Press. Lyon began collaborating with Windsor prior to her passing in 2017 & completed the memoir with cooperation from Edie’s spouse Judith Kasen-Windsor who provided Edie’s extensive archive of personal papers dating back to the 1940s. “A Wild & Precious Life” shares intimate fascinating details of Windsor’s personal life, career pursuits & loves from her adventures in Greenwich Village lesbian bars in the 1950s while pursuing a master’s degree in mathematics at NYU to her extensive work at IBM as well as her activist awakening & epic love affair with Thea Spyer. Edie met Spyer in the 1960’s & their partnership lasted 44 years until Thea’s passing in 2009. With the federal government refusing to acknowledge their Canadian marriage Windsor was then required to pay $363,053 in federal estate taxes on her wife's estate which led to the 2013 Supreme Court case United States v. Windsor that successfully overturned Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act leading to marriage equality becoming the law of the land in 2015. Edie found love again marrying Judith Kasen-Windsor in 2016 who stated, “With irreverent & unexpected stories this memoir chronicles the struggles and passions that drove her extraordinary life. It’s an important part of her legacy, a gift to all who will continue her message of hope, strength & courage. Edie proved that love does, in fact, win.” I talked to Joshua about what he hopes to accomplish with this book & his spin on our LGBTQ issues in this exclusive audio interview. LISTEN:
For More Info: us.macmillan.com
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Honoring Trans Day of Resilience

Ten trans & non-binary visual artists & poets of color from across the country have collaborated to honor Trans Day of Resilience (TDOR) by creating original artwork to celebrate their communities. The TDOR art project is an extension & re-imagining of Transgender Day of Remembrance that takes place on November 20th. The project’s goal is to expand the conversation towards honoring & supporting trans people while they are alive & not just in memoriam. Micah Bazant, Forward Together Artist in Residence stated, “Forward Together is honored to present this project to the world for the sixth year in a row. At a time when white supremacy & anti-trans oppression are killing trans women of color, we offer this art to share our vision of trans freedom. Trans communities of color have always existed & have always used art to survive. As the government tries to erase trans people from laws & policies, art & culture are especially critical. There is no way to erase the beauty and power of trans resistance.” Led by Forward Together a national women of color-led organization whose mission is to unite communities to win rights, recognition & resources for all families. The TDOR art project acknowledges how violence disproportionately impacts trans people of color. The art project simultaneously uses visual art & poetry to uplift trans power & resilience. Trans artists & poets of color are telling their own stories of resistance, hope & liberation. Everyday Heroes by Shea Coco.
For More Info: forwardtogether.org
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Trump & Pence Latest LGBTQ Attack

The Human Rights Campaign reacts to Vice President Mike Pence’s address commemorating National Adoption Month with a reminder of the Trump-Pence administration's track record of attacking our LGBTQ children & adults in the adoption & foster care systems. Alphonso David HRC President stated, “Trump & Pence relentlessly marginalize LGBTQ people & attempt to erase our existence. Their disturbing worldview extends into the adoption & foster care systems, where they support giving federally-funded foster & adoption agencies a license to discriminate against LGBTQ children & prospective parents, religious minorities & other vulnerable groups. LGBTQ youth are tragically overrepresented in foster care & this White House continues to exacerbate the marginalization, harassment & discrimination that LGBTQ youth in foster care & families face.” As we head into impeachment hearings Trump & Pence have proposed a federal regulation that would strip away nondiscrimination requirements & permit all HHS grant recipients, notably adoption & foster care agencies, to discriminate against LGBTQ people & in many circumstances religious minorities & women & still receive federal funding. As you remember in April we reported that HHS announced a proposed federal rule that would abandon data collection on the sexual orientation of youth in foster care & foster and adoptive parents & guardians in the Adoption & Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS). Just be aware as we head into 2020 that nothing is so bad that it can’t get worse.
For More Info: hrc.org
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LGBTQ People Attacked In Uganda

LGBTQ activists in Uganda confirmed that on Sunday November 10th an LGBTQ+ friendly bar in Kampala was raided & 125 people arrested & charged with drug possession, indicating an intentional & growing persecution of LGBTQ people in the country. Kasha Jacquelin, a Ugandan LGBTQ activist stated “The past has shown that it is difficult to prosecute anyone for being LGBT. Using trumped-up drug charges is a new & frightening tactic; one which is really hard to tackle & will make our battle even tougher.” Jessica Stern, Executive Director of OutRight Action International added, “The resurfacing of the anti-homosexuality bill in a country which already prescribes life imprisonment for same-gender relations could only have had one intention - to increase hate and stigma against LGBTIQ people, putting them at heightened risk of arbitrary detention & attack. That is exactly what is happening. The growing intensity of arrests, the clear targeting of an LGBTIQ friendly bar, makes it painfully clear that a witch hunt is being mounted against LGBTIQ Ugandans.” Persecution of LGBTIQ people has increased in Uganda in recent months, as rumors of the so-called “Anti-Homosexuality Act” which would impose the death penalty for same-gender relations have resurfaced. At least four people have been killed in suspected hate-motivated attacks. Arrests of LGBTQ+ people have also increased. Prior to the raid carried out on November 10th, 16 people were arrested & charged with “trafficking in persons” & “carnal knowledge against the order of nature” at the end of October.
For More Info: outrightinternational.org
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Revisiting ‘The Laramie Project’

Stetson Theatre Arts will present Moisés Kaufman’s “The Laramie Project” about Matthew Shepard who in 1998 was kidnapped, severely beaten & left tied to a prairie fence simply because he was gay. Shepard died days later as a result of his injuries. The play will run from Nov. 21st to 24th at Stetson University’s Second Stage Theatre located at the Museum of Art in Deland, Florida. Kaufman & fellow members of the Tectonic Theater Project conducted more than 200 interviews with residents of Laramie, Wyoming. The play is comprised of those first-hand accounts collected by the theatre company. Julie Schmitt, PhD, Director of this production & Creative Arts Department chair at Stetson University stated, “The play’s rehearsal & design process have been really unique and rewarding. Since a number of actors are playing well over eight parts, I have asked them to think of their different characters in relation to a long list of archetypal characters & we're working on finding different ways to embody those archetypes through physical & vocal characterization. It’s a challenge, but the students are up for it & it’s clear that this play means a lot to them. 'The Laramie Project' showcases a tragedy that is disturbingly prevalent today. Even though it has been more than 20 years since the death of Matthew Shepard, there are many moments in the play that really resonate with me & with fellow cast members. I feel that discussions about hate, empathy & compassion will always be relevant & the play certainly feels as though it is of this time."
For Info & Tix…
LISTEN: Cathy Renna On 20 Year Legacy of Matthew Shepard Events

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LGBTQ Representation On Television

For the 24th year GLAAD announced its Where We Are on TV report which analyzes the overall diversity of primetime scripted series regulars on broadcast networks & assesses the number of LGBTQ characters on cable networks & original scripted streaming series on Amazon, Hulu & Netflix for the 2019-2020 TV season. The 2019-2020 report found that networks met & exceeded with a record-high percentage of LGBTQ series regulars on broadcast television at 10.2% of all series regulars. This is up from last year’s 8.8% & the highest GLAAD has found since the organization expanded to count all broadcast series regulars 15 years ago. Also for the first time in this report’s history LGBTQ regular & recurring women on broadcast outnumber LGBTQ men. Of the LGBTQ regular & recurring characters on broadcast 53% are women & 47% are men. Sarah Kate Ellis, President & CEO of GLAAD stated, “Last year, GLAAD called on the television industry to increase the number of LGBTQ characters & more accurately reflect the world we live in & they responded by exceeding this challenge. At a time when the cultural climate is growing increasingly divisive, increased representation of LGBTQ stories & characters on television is especially critical to advance LGBTQ acceptance. Shows like Pose, Schitt’s Creek, Batwoman & Billions demonstrate that not only are LGBTQ stories & characters on TV becoming more diverse, but that viewers everywhere continue to respond with extreme positivity.” GLAAD uses the data from the Where We Are on TV report in work throughout the year to advocate leaders in the TV industry to include more diverse & substantive LGBTQ representations that accelerate acceptance.
For More Info: glaad.org
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UN Renews Independent Expert

The Third Committee of the UN General Assembly adopted the resolution presenting the Annual Report of the Human Rights Council without challenge to the extension of the mandate of the Independent Expert on protection against violence & discrimination on the basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (IE SOGI). Manisha Dhakal Nepali Human Rights Defender from Blue Diamond Society stated, “The tireless, sustained outreach efforts of civil society from the grassroots up was essential to this achievement. Over many years, we have worked together to build a truly global movement that queered the UN.” Jessica Stern, Executive Director of OutRight International concluded, “The Independent Expert plays a crucial role in documenting the discrimination & violence LGBTIQ people around the world face merely for who we love or the gender we are & express. The affirmation of this acute need by the Third Committee today, without challenge, is a reminder of the universality of human rights & a testament to the strength & resilience of LGBTIQ people everywhere coming out and standing up for our right to be who we are.” Victor Madrigal-Borloz has served as the UN Independent Expert on Protection against violence & discrimination based on sexual orientation & gender identity since 2018. Madrigal-Borloz is set to visit Sri Lanka in 2020 & has tabled 12 requests for as many countries to bring about a world free from violence & discrimination for all people, regardless of their sexual orientation & gender identity. OutRight is the only global LGBTIQ-specific organization with a permanent presence at the United Nations in NYC that advocates for human rights progress for LGBTQ people.
For More Info: outrightinternational.org
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LGBTQ Asylum Seekers Mobile App

Tech nonprofit Asylum Connect has launched the first-of-its-kind free mobile app for the tens of thousands of LGBTQ asylum seekers fleeing their homes for safer ground each year. Katie Sgarro, AsylumConnect Co-Founder & President stated, "Our free app instantly connects persecuted LGBTQ people with verified safe services & support. With today's launch, we have improved our platform's mobile accessibility & user experience at this pivotal moment for LGBTQ & immigrant communities." From leaving their dangerous home country to resettlement it is often a matter of life-or-death for our LGBTQ asylum seekers to be able to easily connect with legitimate & LGBTQ affirming lawyers & other direct service providers. LGBTQ asylum seekers & other LGBTQ populations (undocumented immigrants, homeless or isolated youth) use AsylumConnect as a free digital one-stop-shop referral site to meet their needs in all aspects of their lives, including: housing, legal, medical, mental health, education & employment. Lawyers & other direct service providers also use AsylumConnect to gather verified referrals. The AsylumConnect mobile app on iOS & Android offers an improved user experience. Since launching in 2016 AsylumConnect has connected over 11,000 unique users to verified LGBTQ & immigrant-friendly services in the U.S. & has been accessed in over 150 countries. AsylumConnect is a tech nonprofit providing the first & only digital resource platform for LGBTQ asylum. Next AsylumConnect will introduce enhanced map visualization, offline capabilities, new locations & an integrated private online community for LGBTQ asylum seekers.
For More Info: asylumconnect.org
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San Francisco Transgender Film Festival

Founded in 1997 the San Francisco Transgender Film Festival is the world’s first & longest running transgender film festival that takes place November 7th to 10th at the Roxie Theater in San Francisco, California. Shawna Virago Artistic Director stated, “We were founded at a time in 1997 when funders would not support transgender film festivals or filmmakers & so for years, we have had to survive & thrive on our transgender smarts, sweat & love from the community. The San Francisco Transgender Film Festival provides a powerful counter-narrative to the increasingly assimilationist world of transgender reality stars & celebrities. Hollywood gets it very wrong. Come see trans & gender-variant people telling our own stories.” From sexy shorts to inspiring animation, from gender-busting music videos to hard-hitting documentaries, SFTFF 2019 truly has something for everyone & all genders are welcomed to attend. SFTFF was founded in 1997 as the world’s first transgender film festival & is built upon grassroots, social-justice-seeking, anti-oppression principles. Originally a bi-annual festival, SFTFF expanded to an annual festival in 2003 by audience demand. This year’s Festival will feature films from more than a dozen countries around the world & will feature a closed-captioned. The San Francisco Transgender Film Festival (SFTFF) screens films that promote the visibility of transgender & gender variant people & challenge the mainstream media’s negative stereotypes of our transgender communities. They provide opportunities for transgender & gender variant media artists, build community through film & performance events & engage their audiences in cross-community dialogue.
For Info & Tix: sftff.org
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Palm Springs Stonewall 50 Exhibition

The Palm Springs Art Museum is presenting “Touching History: Stonewall 50” a new exhibition recognizing the 50th anniversary of New York’s Stonewall riots that sparked the gay liberation movement & laid the groundwork for the modern struggle for LGBTQ civil rights now through March 29th 2020. Louis Grachos the museum’s CEO & JoAnn McGrath Executive Director stated, “We’re excited to present this exhibition of work that is provoking, poignant & in many ways, celebratory." Rochelle Steiner, Chief Curator & Director of Curatorial Affairs & Programs added, “Palm Springs Art Museum is proud to present Touching History: Stonewall 50 to recognize this important moment in history. Together, the artists in Touching History honor the struggles & tenacity of the queer community, past & present, through drawing, collage & photography & visualize queer kinship & community through their works.” Organized by Associate Curator David Evans Frantz the exhibition brings together an intergenerational group of eight contemporary artists—Marcela Pardo Ariza, Stephen Barker, Robert Andy Coombs, Jess T. Dugan & Vanessa Fabbre, Jonathan Molina-Garcia, Kang Seung Lee & Joey Terrill—who explore queer kinship, care & community through the immediacy & intimacy of touch. The exhibition includes a selection of intimate collages by Joey Terrill, produced while the artist was active in Gay Liberation & Chicano activism during the 1970s. Marcela Pardo Ariza presents staged photographs of friends & collaborators interacting with life-sized images of everyday queer people. Kang Sueng Lee & Stephen Barker’s photographs covers the AIDS epidemic affirming the need for connection & community in the face of stigma & erasure.
For More Info: psmuseum.org
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LGBTQ Elders Stonewall Stories

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall StoryCorps has joined SAGE, the National LGBTQ Task Force, Griot Circle & GLSEN creating a coalition of partners preparing to launch Stonewall OutLoud a participatory initiative to gather the stories of LGBTQ elders before they are lost to history. Stonewall OutLoud will reach deep into LGBTQ communities across the country to ensure that as wide a collection of voices as possible are recorded & preserved. With special emphasis given to rural communities, communities of color & transgender elders, the initiative seeks to connect older & younger generations through the StoryCorps interview experience, preserve these stories for the future & share the voices of the LGBTQ community with a broad general audience through educational & broadcast partnerships. Dave Isay, President & Founder of StoryCorps stated, “We’re thrilled to be working with our partners over the month of June to ask the country to honor an LGBTQ elder with an interview & preserve this part of our history about which so little information exists. In the spirit of the Shoah project, which documented the stories of every living Holocaust survivor & Maya Angelou’s stirring words, ‘History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again,’ we hope that Stonewall OutLoud will be a beautiful, loving celebration of LGBTQ elders on this historic anniversary.” Each of these interviews will become a permanent part of American history at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.
For More Info: storycorps.org
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WIFVNE Presents “The Luring”

Women in Film & Video New England is presenting the New England Premiere of “The Luring” produced in conjunction with The 45th Boston Science Fiction Film Festival on Thursday November 7th at 7P at the Somerville Theater in Somerville, MA. A panel with director Christopher Wells, Director of Photography Amanda McGrady & cast member Rick Irwin follows the screening. “The Luring” is about a man tries to recover a lost memory by returning to his family’s Vermont vacation home where an unspeakable act took place leaving him institutionalized as a child. The film stars Rick Irwin (The Upside, The Good Doctor, Enough Said), Michaela Sprague ("Boardwalk Empire," "Smash," The Night Before), Dan Berkey ("Boardwalk Empire") & Molly Fahey ("Missed Connections") & Henry Gagliardi (The Grief of Others, 7th Secret). Cinematographer Amanda McGrady is a WIFVNE Member. "The Luring" won Best Thriller Feature Film at the Motor City Nightmares Film Festival. Wells stated, “I actually directed a few horror short films prior to this effort. I particularly love to create weird & dark films with a little sprinkle of humor. I see a lot of the same monsters with the same jump scares in the horror genre space & I wanted to be more original. I didn’t want to regurgitate what’s already been done. I respect filmmakers who make something that hasn’t been done before because at least they didn’t sell out. That being said, I also wanted to write a story that was actually interesting with character development, mystery & of course some weirdness.” Tickets for the New England Premiere of "The Luring" are $15.
WATCH TRAILER
 
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Trump Attacks LGBTQ Healthcare

Once again the Trump-Pence White House has proposed a federal regulation that would strip away nondiscrimination requirements & permit all Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) grant recipients, notably adoption & foster care agencies to discriminate against our LGBTQ community & in many circumstances religious minorities & women & still receive federal funding. Sharon McGowan, Lambda Legal Chief Strategy Officer & Legal Director stated, “HHS is charged with protecting the health & wellbeing of all people, but its actions today demonstrate once again its complete disregard for its mission. Today’s proposed rule rolls back critical protections against discrimination on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, gender identity & religion & in doing so, puts at risk some of the most vulnerable members of our communities, including LGBTQ people who are poor or experiencing homelessness; LGBTQ seniors & LGBTQ youth in out-of-home care, including foster children in need of loving families, people living with HIV & many others. Furthermore, HHS’s announcement that it will immediately cease enforcement of existing nondiscrimination protections, rather than adhering to the established procedures for changing regulations such as these, once again demonstrates the Trump administration’s utter disregard for the rule of law.” Alphonso David HRC President concluded, “The Trump-Pence White House has proposed a horrific federal regulation that would permit discrimination across the entire spectrum of HHS programs receiving federal funding. This would permit discrimination against LGBTQ people, religious minorities & women in programs related to foster care, adoption, HIV & STI prevention, youth homelessness, refugee resettlement, elder care programs & more. The Trump-Pence White House is relying on the same flawed legal reasoning they’ve used in the past to justify discrimination against LGBTQ people & other communities.”
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Cybill Shepherd To Be Honored

The Trevor Project, the world’s largest suicide prevention & crisis intervention organization for our LGBTQ young people announced Cybill Shepherd as the 2019 recipient of the “Champion Award,” which recognizes the outstanding support of an ally & their commitment to supporting The Trevor Project’s mission. The PwC Charitable Foundation, Inc. will be the recipient of the “20/20 Visionary Award” presented to corporations supporting LGBTQ inclusion around the world. Both will be honored at the TrevorLIVE LA fundraising gala, November 17th at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles, California. Shepherd stated, “For many young people in crisis, the affirming work of The Trevor Project can mean the world. In my work as an entertainer & activist & especially as a mother, I’ve seen the profound freedom that comes with giving someone permission to be themselves. I’m incredibly humbled to accept the ‘Champion Award’ at TrevorLIVE LA & will continue to stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community as an ally fighting for a more inclusive place for the next generation.” Amit Paley, CEO & Executive Director of The Trevor Project concluded, "Cybill Shepherd & the PwC Charitable Foundation consistently make a positive impact on the lives of LGBTQ people across the country & we're excited to honor their commitment to The Trevor Project & LGBTQ young people.” Zazie Beetz (Joker) & Sasheer Zamata (Saturday Night Live) will host the event with Jane Lynch & EJ Johnson as presenters & Grace VanderWaal will performer. They join previously announced “Youth Innovator Award” honoree Hayley Kiyoko.
For More Info & Tix: thetrevorproject.org
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Halloween Attack Of The Mogul Maniacs

In a time when white male mogul maniacs rule the land I can’t think of a scarier way to celebrate Halloween in 2019 then to take a look back over the last four decades & reflect on how someone like Trump became president of America “Land of the Free & Home of the Brave”. We haven’t had a woman rank this high in the corporate hierarchy in this country since Marjorie Post the socialite & entrepreneur of General Foods who also built Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida. Women need to rise up once again to the top tier of this phenomenon. The interesting thing is all four men have indulged in mainstream media. Trump would have never become president if it weren’t for his NBC/Comcast TV series “Celebrity Apprentice”. Bill Gates enhanced his position by creating MSNBC, Jeff Bezos dabbles in the media by buying the Washington Post & jumping into the streaming game with Amazon Prime Video & Mark Zuckerberg has taken social networking technology into the 21st century.  Now the saving grace of Gates, Bezos & Zuckerberg are their philanthropy efforts for many underfunded causes that can possibly move our country into a better place which brings us back to Trump who on Halloween 2019 is headed for an impeachment vote. So we’re all left wondering what will today bring, a Trick or Treat for our democracy. Let’s hope that in these very trying times that we wake up from our technical overload & get back to basics of compassion & empathy which is the only way that we can really move this country forward. To be continued…. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!
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Join WIFVNE At Mass Media Expo

Women In Film & Video New England will be one of the 34 exhibitors at the Mass Media Expo, Boston's premier annual film & media conference on Saturday November 2nd at WGBH Studios in Boston, MA from 10:30A to 6P. The event features keynote panels & talks with industry leaders in film & series production, digital content & marketing. This year’s keynote speakers are Jeff Rosica. CEO of AVID, Hope Hall Senior Advisor for Video at Warren for President & Lubomir Madolev, Supervising Producer, Mustache Agency. The Expo conference & talks are held in 4,000 sq ft of industry exhibitions from the latest camera & lighting technology to media startups & educational resources & immersive media experiences. The Expo also showcases short film programs curated by Independent Film Festival Boston. Get ready to network with over 500 industry members throughout the day providing a unique opportunity for industry professionals to connect & experience the latest trends & movements in the industry. Join WIFVNE today & get 30% off general admission passes. WIFVNE was founded in 1981 by eleven women all Boston-based media professionals that came together to form the New England chapter of Women in Film. WIFVNE is a member of an umbrella group of Women in Film & Television International (WIFTI) with a global network comprised of some 44 Women in Film chapters worldwide and more than 13,000 members dedicated to advancing professional development and achievement for women working in all areas of film, video and other screen-based media.  In this exclusive podcast Alecia Orsini, President of WIFVNE talks about what this relevant organization hopes to accomplish to advance women in the film industry. LISTEN:
 
For More Info: womeninfilmvideo.org
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Celebrity Cruises Soirée REAF Event

Celebrity Cruises will host the second annual Soirée on the Bay on Wednesday November 13th an exclusive fundraising event aboard their luxurious Eclipse ship benefiting the local LGBTQ community from 5:30P to 8:30P. Celebrity Cruises celebrates Love & Diversity all year long & across their fleet & has been honored as Most Gay-Friendly Cruise Line. The event will benefit the Richmond/Ermet AID Foundation (REAF). Scott Clifton, Area Market Director Celebrity Cruises stated, “Celebrity Cruises prides itself on giving back to the communities it serves. As the first cruise line to host a same gender wedding, a partner of MeetMeOnboard.com & winner of the Annual CRUIZIE award among others, we continue to uphold our devotion to our LGBTQ guests. It has been our honor to partner with charities like REAF to raise funds & awareness in the San Francisco Bay Area. We look forward to hosting everyone on our gorgeous ship, The Eclipse.” Ken Henderson, Executive Director, REAF added, “We are excited to be the beneficiary of this event for the second year in a row & proud to have Celebrity Cruises as our ongoing official cruise partner. Last year, Celebrity went all out to make sure this sold-out party was first class all the way & our guests have not stopped talking about it. The fact that we can use this party to also bring attention to the 3 other charities we will be recognizing is just icing on the cake.” Honored guests include Okan Sengun, Founder of the LGBT Asylum Project. This exclusive evening will have underwater-themed entertainment, live music, dancing, & special guest appearances/performances including Franc D’Ambrosio.
For More Info & Tix…
LISTEN: Gretchen Wylder Talks New Comedy Series “These Thems”

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Gretchen Wylder Speaks OUT (AUDIO)

This week I talked with Gretchen Wylder the creator & writer of “These Thems” an award-winning intersectional queer digital comedy series. “These Thems” directed by Jett Garrison is a 7 episode fully narrative series that follows the lives of a newly out lesbian making up for lost time, a non-binary educator intent on training the straights, a transgender man who is comfortably in the closet & a lovelorn gay best friend. With many people living beyond the gender binary identities very few explicitly non-binary characters are represented in mainstream media. Non-binary gender identity may be one of the least understood labels falling under the LGBTQ+ umbrella simply because it’s also one of the least visible. Wylder is among the very few writers & show creators paying consideration to non-binary identities & gender non-conformity that’s moving the needle for accurate depiction. “These Thems” set in NYC tells the story of Gretchen played by Wylder who after realizing she may be a lesbian befriends non-binary dog walker Vero (Victoria “Vico” Ortiz) who decides to stop training dogs & start training the straights. Vero takes Gretchen under their wing & introduces Gretchen to the queer world as she navigates what it's like to be newly out at the age of 30. Vero's childhood friend Asher (Shaan Dasani) isn't out as trans at work & is faced with the decision to out himself when an opportunity for an LGBTQ account pops up. Gretchen's gay best friend & roommate Kevin (Nick Park) is looking for love & may have found it in Asher. I talked to Wylder about what she hopes to accomplish with “These Thems” & her spin on our LGBTQ issues in this exclusive audio podcast. LISTEN
For Info & Watch Video: thesethems.com
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AG Maura Healey Honored (VIDEO)

The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition honored Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey with the Appreciation Award at their 22nd annual fundraising event the Lesbians & Friends LGBTQ Dance Party For Prevention. Cheryl Osimo MBCC Executive Director stated, "Attorney General Healey has worked tirelessly for the citizens of Massachusetts across so many important issues. We admire all that she has accomplished & continues to work towards on behalf of her constituents.” In accepting the award Attorney General Healey stated, “I am grateful that you have come together as a community to support the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition in their mission of breast cancer prevention…I am particularly grateful for MBCC’s Executive Director Cheryl Osimo, who has been raising awareness & providing education about this issue since day one…I would also like to take to this opportunity to tell you that you are not alone in this fight. As part of the effort for prevention, we need everyone at the table, public officials, scientists, the medical community & citizens. To solve this crisis, we have to tackle it from all angles. I am incredibly humbled by your recognition tonight & inspired by your dedication to this cause.” In Massachusetts, breast cancer incidence rates are 12% higher than the national average which estimates that 1 in 8 U.S. women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. MBCC is the only breast cancer non-profit working closely with a research & sister organization Silent Spring Institute to investigate preventable environmental causes of the disease. This work is funded through annual fundraising events like the Lesbians & Friends Dance: A Party for Prevention. WATCH VIDEO
For More Info: mbcc.org
LISTEN: Cheryl Osimo Talks MBCC Annual Party For Prevention

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Equality Florida To Honor Nikki Fried

Equality Florida Institute will present its highest honor “The Voice for Equality Award” to Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried at their 17th Annual Equality Florida Broward Gala that takes place on Saturday November 9th at The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Nadine Smith Equality Florida Executive Director stated, “Fried has sent a strong message that Florida is open to all – that every consumer, resident & visitor should be treated fairly, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. We are thrilled to present Commissioner Fried with our highest honor at Equality Florida's Broward Gala." Florida State Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith concluded, “In the history of our state, no cabinet-level official was ever willing to officially implement protections for LGBTQ employees. Commissioner Fried did the right thing & should be applauded.” The Voice for Equality Award is bestowed annually on an individual who, with courage, passion & unwavering commitment move us closer to full equality. Past recipients include Congressman Ted Deutch, Greg Louganis, Martina Navratilova, Jim Obergefell & Jazz Jennings. A highlight of the gala will be the annual State of the State address by Equality Florida’s co-founder & CEO, Nadine Smith. The evening will be emceed by NBC 6 celebrity host, Roxanne (Roxy) Vargas. There will be culinary delicacies, smart cocktails & a live auction featuring a fabulous 14-day China River cruise donated by Whisper Travel, a specially commissioned painting entitled “Equality” by Susan Clifton & a silent auction. Musical entertainment will be by jazz artist Ashley Pezzotti & dancing with DJ Karin Ward.
For More Info & Tix: eqfl.org
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California LGBTQ Leaders Summit

Nearly 150 LGBTQ community leaders will gather in San Francisco for the Equality California Institute's fifth annual Fair Share for Equality policy event Friday, October 25th at the UCSF Mission Bay Conference Center. Equality California Institute is the educational arm of Equality California, the nation's largest statewide LGBTQ civil rights organization. California Secretary of State Alex Padilla will deliver a keynote address at approximately 1P during which he will make an announcement about LGBTQ voters & the 2020 election. Labor & civil rights icon Dolores Huerta will also deliver a keynote address at approximately 1:30P & California State Controller Betty Yee will speak at a 5P post-convening reception. Assembly members David Chiu (D-San Francisco) & Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) will speak on a 2P panel about policy & budget priorities for the 2020 legislative session. Some of the topics discussed will include: mental health, transgender civil rights, immigration, safe & supportive schools & HIV & AIDS. Equality California Institute’s Fair Share for Equality brings together LGBTQ progressive, business & community leaders, elected officials & issue experts to discuss the disparities in health & well-being that LGBTQ people continue to face & to ensure that a “fair share” of resources is dedicated to California’s LGBTQ community. Equality California is the nation’s largest statewide LGBTQ civil rights organization. They bring the voices of LGBTQ people & allies to institutions of power in California & across the United States, striving to create a world that is healthy, just & fully equal for all LGBTQ people. They advance civil rights & social justice by inspiring, advocating & mobilizing through an inclusive movement that works tirelessly on behalf of those they serve.
For More Info: eqca.org
LISTEN: Cheryl Osimo Talks MBCC Oct 26th Party For Prevention

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Boston LGBTQ Weekend Events

This is a fabulous weekend for LGBTQ events in Boston. First on Thursday October 24th John Hancock Employee Resource Groups & Boston Spirit Magazine are presenting “Breaking the Double Pane Glass Ceiling” with an inspiring & empowering discussion with Boston’s prominent LBTQ women leaders as they discuss their personal journeys breaking through to the top of their various fields. Panelists include, Beth Chandler, President & CEO, YW Boston, Elyse Cherry, CEO of BlueHub Capital, Valerie Stone, Vice Chair for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion of the Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) & the panel will be moderated by Sue O'Connell. The event is sold out but we’ll be covering it for OUTTAKE MEDIA. Then on Friday October 25th the GLAD Spirit of Justice Award Dinner takes place at the Boston Marriott Copley Place honoring Chai Feldblum Civil, Disability & LGBTQ Rights Legal Pioneer. Then on Saturday October 26th is the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition 22nd annual fundraising event the “Lesbians & Friends LGBTQ Dance Party For Prevention” honoring Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey via video that takes place at The Inn at Brookline at 1200 Beacon Street in Brookline, MA. Then on Sunday October 27th is “Honoring Our Lesbian Founders” celebrating the founders & members of seven Boston area lesbian organizations from 1P to 3P at the Brookline Senior Center at 93 Winchester Street in Brookline, MA. Also on Saturday & Sunday Pink Martini will be performing their silver jubilee tour bringing a night of old favorites & new collaborations spanning the band's 25 year career at the Berklee Performance Center in Boston, MA. So we’re looking forward to being exhausted & inspired from this whirlwind LGBTQ weekend.
For More Info & Tix: mbcc.org
LISTEN: Cheryl Osimo Talks MBCC Oct 26th Party For Prevention

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