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NewFest New York LGBTQ Film Festival

NewFest’s 32nd edition of the New York LGBTQ Film Festival signature event is going virtual & will take place October 16th through October 27th with more than 120 new films accessible to ticket holders nationwide via NewFest’s on-demand platform. The festival will kick off with the New York City premiere of Francis Lee’s highly anticipated AMMONITE starring Academy Award-winner Kate Winslet & Academy Award nominee Saoirse Ronan. Winslet will also present Lee with the festival’s inaugural World Queer Visionary Award ahead of the special drive-in screening taking place at the Queens Drive-In at Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The festival will close with the virtual New York premiere of Faraz Shariat’s Teddy Award-winner NO HARD FEELINGS. David Hatkoff NewFest’s Executive Director stated, “With the Presidential election right around the corner & a Supreme Court seat now open, it is more urgent than ever that queer stories be told and celebrated. We can’t wait for audiences around the country to view these incredible films & hopefully be inspired to raise their own voices in pride & protest on November 3rd & beyond.” Nick McCarthy NewFest’s Director of Programming concluded, “This year’s line-up channels themes that inform our community & society at large while confronting the edges of democracy & celebrating our strong history of LGBTQ ancestry that broke barriers before. By highlighting portraits of hometown heroes & unsung global icons, celebrating the clear fact that All Black Lives Matter, standing up for the visibility of our LGBTQ siblings around the world & encouraging intergenerational dialogue within our community, our 32nd annual program will raise human spirits by uplifting our diversity of voices.” LISTEN: Cheryl Osimo Talks MBCC Event Honoring Lily Tomlin

MBCC To Honor Lily Tomlin (AUDIO)

This week I talked with Cheryl Osimo, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition about their 23rd annual premier fundraising event the Lesbians & Friends LGBTQ Dance Party For Prevention that takes place virtually on October 24th from 7P to 9P via Zoom. This year MBCC will feature a special guest appearance & award presentation to long-time environmental activist, comedian & actress Lily Tomlin. The MBCC Environmental Activist Award will be presented to Ms. Tomlin in acknowledgment of her passion & work on many environmental issues. Osimo stated, “We are constantly inspired by trailblazers like Ms. Tomlin who have fearlessly & relentlessly paved the way of putting the greater good of our planet & families first. Including her in MBCC’s history of individuals dedicated to making a positive impact in the world is thrilling news.” The online event will also include laughs with guest comedian Karen Williams & dance lessons with OUT to Dance's Liz Nania where you can learn to dance the cha-cha, rhumba, salsa or merengue with no partner needed. DJ Shelly Cullen will be spinning the tunes throughout the virtual event with a Silent Auction that will run from October 17th through October 24th. 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 upcoming virtual Lesbians & Friends LGBTQ Dance Party For Prevention. Tickets to attend the virtual event for adults are on a sliding scale of $15, $30, or $45 with tickets for students $10. I talked to Cheryl about what she hopes to accomplish with her work at MBCC & her spin on our LGBTQ issues. LISTEN  

For More Info & Tix: mbcc.org

Barrett Anti Choice & Anti LGBTQ Stand

Three years ago we urge the Senate to oppose the confirmation of Amy C. Barrett to the U.S. Court of Appeals because of her position against a woman’s right to choose & her deeply held opposition to marriage equality & LGBTQ civil rights. Now three years later we urge the Senate to upheld U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg deathbed wish not to fill her seat until after the election in November. Against a woman’s right to choose Barrett has stated, “The framework of Roe essentially permitted abortion on demand & Roe recognizes no state interest in the life of a fetus. Republicans are heavily invested in getting judges who will overturn Roe.” Then on marriage equality Barrett joined a letter in 2015 voicing her belief that marriage is between a man & a woman & she is strongly endorsed by anti LGBTQ hate groups including the Heritage Foundation, Southern Poverty Law Center& the Family Research Council among others. Sarah Kate Ellis GLAAD President concluded, “If confirmed, Amy Coney Barrett will be a vote to undermine hard-won rights critical to all LGBTQ people, women & immigrants. Health care, reproductive rights, our legal rights to marry who we love or not be fired for who we are, are all at risk. Anti-LGBTQ activists supporting Barrett are wrongly claiming she is being targeted for her religion, when the focus is on her record. Barrett has voted against access to abortion, she has spoken out against LGBTQ rights, she would be the deciding vote to take away health care for millions in the middle of a deadly, out-of-control pandemic. Confirming Barrett will drag America backwards. We cannot allow her to represent President Trump’s bigotry & bullying at the Supreme Court for decades to come.”

Inside Out LGBTQ Film Festival Events

Inside Out Canada's largest LGBTQ Film Festival championing innovative LGBTQ filmmakers from around the globe announced it will open its 30th annual festival with the drive-in premiere of the hotly anticipated David Bowie biopic “Stardust” on Thursday October 1st at the Ontario Place Drive-In at 955 Lake Shore Blvd W in Toronto, Ontario. In addition to that two additional drive-in events will take place including a special preview presentation of ”Jump, Darling” an offbeat family drama starring Oscar-winner Cloris Leachman & Thomas Duplessie takes place at Ontario Place on Friday October 2nd & the Ottawa Drive-In event will be “Ahead Of The Curve” chronicling the life of the best selling lesbian culture magazine Curve will take place at the Drive-In Experience Ottawa at Wesley Clover Parks on Saturday October 3rd. Inside Out’s digital platform will be available October 1st to October 11th through Inside Out's new AppleTV & Roku apps launching October 1st. Audiences will be able to customize their own watch lists & schedule from the comfort of their own homes using their home entertainment systems. Andria Wilson Inside Out’s Executive Director Andria Wilson stated “In 30 years of LGBTQ film exhibition, we’ve never seen an edition of Inside Out quite like this. These past 6 months have necessitated innovation, imagination & collaboration as our teams & festival colleagues around the globe have adjusted our models to this moment. What we’re sharing with you today is the result of that internal & external journey, which has been guided by our mission to elevate the works of LGBTQ filmmakers & connect them with our diverse communities.” 

Out & Equal Virtual LGBTQ Summit

This year’s Out & Equal 2020 Summit is going virtual from October 5th to 9th & with Trump’s new Executive Order expanding a ban on racial sensitivity training to federal contractors it is crucial to tune in to where our LGBTQ community stands in the workplace moving forward. Erin Uritus, CEO of Out & Equal Workplace Advocates stated, “This Executive Order is a perfect example of unchecked power, of weaponized privilege & of dog whistles that inflame racial tensions -- the very practices that these trainings are meant to eliminate. We in the LGBTQ community know what it's like to be discriminated against & to have the lessons of our lived experience denied by those who hold power. Today, we commit to the members of our community & others targeted by this order -- be they Black, Indigenous, or other people of color, or women -- we will stand together to fight for equality. Our first reaction to the president’s action is to state the simple the truth of what President Trump's thought police would deny us: America has a race problem. White people have unearned privilege. Men have unearned privilege & this needs to change. In 10 days, we will host the largest LGBTQ workplace conference in the world. The Out & Equal Workplace Summit brings together more than 70% of the Fortune 1000 companies to learn how to confront bigotry & racism & build cultures of belonging. President Trump should come. He could stand to learn a thing or two.” This year's Summit will leverage all of the assets of digital mediums & offer enhanced capacity for connection, career development & expertise sharing. There will be speakers, performers, workshops & more. For More Info: outandequal.org

LGBTQ Transforming Care Conference

The Equitas Health Institute will host their fifth 2020 Transforming Care Conference on LGBTQ & HIV Health Equity virtually from October 14th to 16th. This year’s theme is “The Invisibles” & will feature over 30 presentations including live plenary speakers & breakout sessions that address the gaps in health & social service provision for lesbians, bisexual & pansexual people, trans men & women, non-binary people, LGBTQ people living with disability or mental illness, queer people of color, asexual people & Black & Latina cis women. The Transforming Care Conference is known for the unique opportunity it has provided for professionals & community members to come together learn not only from research & best practices but from each other’s life & healthcare experiences. The Equitas Health Institute delivers exceptional LGBTQ+ culturally competent healthcare education & training, engages with LGBTQ+ patients, works with community-based organizations & supports regional LGBTQ+ health research efforts. The Equitas Health Institute focuses on reducing health disparities in our LGBTQ community as the education, research & community engagement arm of Equitas Health. The Equitas Health Institute delivers exceptional LGBTQ culturally competent healthcare education & training, engages with LGBTQ patients, works with community-based organizations & supports regional LGBTQ health research efforts. Established in 1984, Equitas Health is a regional nonprofit community healthcare system & as a federally designated Community Health Center it is one of the largest LGBTQ & HIV/AIDS serving healthcare organizations in the United States with 19 offices in 13 cities Equitas Health serves tens of thousands of patients in Ohio, Kentucky & West Virginia each year through patient-centered, integrated & cutting edge services including primary & specialized medical care, pharmacy, dentistry, behavioral health, HIV/STI treatment & prevention, PrEP/PEP, Ryan White/HIV case management, care navigation, advocacy & other community health initiatives. For More Info..

Connecticut Virtual LGBTQ Film Festival

Out Film CT announced their lineup for the 33rd annual Connecticut LGBTQ Film Festival that runs October 2nd to 10th with the virtual festival to include over 100 films plus 3 Drive-In events at Parkade Cinema in Manchester, CT. Shane Engstrom Out Film CT Festival Director stated, "As in recent years, we received hundreds of submissions from LGBTQ filmmakers from across the United States as well as around the globe. In keeping up with the massive cultural shifts this year with the pandemic & the Black Lives Matters movement, we have assembled our most diverse & inclusive festival ever plus launched a virtual platform to allow everyone across Connecticut & surrounding states to enjoy the best of LGBTQ cinema safely." In addition to feature-length films & documentaries the 33rd Connecticut LGBTQ Film Festival will include a greatly expanded slate of short films with 2 Gay programs, 2 Lesbian programs, a Trans/Non-Binary short program, Youth & International shorts & there will be all-new programs of Drag/Cross-Dressing, Bisexual, Queer People of Color & Documentary shorts. There will also be an inaugural program of "Connecticut Connections" shorts featuring films with filmmakers, actors or locations associated with the Nutmeg State. Out Film CT’s mission is to entertain, educate & promote community through the exhibition of LGBTQ film. Connecticut’s largest LGBTQ cultural event holds a special place in the state’s cultural landscape, bringing the community together to introduce, celebrate & rediscover the ideas & values that make the LGBTQ community unique. Out Film CT also presents the monthly Queer Thursdays film series in partnership with Cinestudio usually shown on the second Thursday of each month. For More Info & Tix...

Mary L Trump Joins LPAC Virtual Event

LPAC (Lesbian Political Action Committee) whose mission is to build the political power of LGBTQ women will be hosting a special virtual conversation with Mary L Trump on Thursday September 24th at 5P EST via Zoom led by LPAC Board Member Hilary Rosen. Stephanie Sandberg LPAC’s Executive Director stated, “Mary L Trump pulls no punches in her book “Too Much & Never Enough: How My Family Created The World's Most Dangerous Man”. You know she'll be equally candid when she joins LPAC this Thursday September 24th 5P EST for conversation (an LPAC fundraiser).” Mary L Trump concluded, “As you may know, I wrote a book about my uncle that was published this summer. In it I described the ways in which Donald is a danger not only to our country but also to the survival of democracy. With that in mind, I will do whatever I can to ensure not only that Donald is voted out of office, but that progressive candidates are elected to federal, state-wide & local office. Our recovery as a nation will depend on our having leaders who prioritize equality & justice. As a progressive & an out gay woman, I've chosen to partner with LPAC because I believe strongly in its mission to elect queer women who share those values & I'm committed to helping the organization have maximum impact from now until November 3rd & beyond.” The event is hosted by Nikki Barua & Monica Marquez, Diane DiCarlo & Jeanne Leszczynski, Diane Felicio & Jan Donley, Phillip Goldberg, Jennifer N. Pritzker, Colleen Sullivan, Shari Weiner & Joanna Hochman. Event Patrons Co-Chairs are Mary L Trump, Laura Ricketts & Brooke Skinner Ricketts with sponsors Ron Bailey & Bill Edwards, Sue Reamer & Christy Webber. For Info & Register… 


LGBTQ Campus Pride Goes Fully Digital

Campus Pride the leading national educational organization for LGBTQ & ally college students has announce that it has permanently taken its operations fully online to virtually meet the needs of LGBTQ college students across the country. The decision comes after the national nonprofit which is dedicated to building future LGBTQ leaders & creating safer college communities for LGBTQ people adapted its staffing model & all in-person programming during the summer & fall to an online format. Shane Windmeyer Campus Pride Executive Director stated, ““This year has changed all of us. We decided to listen & allow it to change us for the better. When faced with a challenge, you adapt & create new opportunities. Campus Pride, since it was founded, has always embraced the use of technology to mobilize communities & create safer spaces. This latest move to go completely digital is a throwback of sorts to the way we started out, with staff & volunteers working together remotely & without a physical space to call our own for several years. The decision is also consistent with our brand, which has always been able to adapt nimbly to meet the changing needs of LGBTQ young people.” Tom Elliott, Chair of the Board for Campus Pride concluded, “Today’s announcement is a preview into the many exciting developments that are to come for Campus Pride as we enter into our 20th year in 2021. We have started to imagine what things will look like post-pandemic & we believe there will be a growing need for connecting with LGBTQ college students virtually. Campus Pride remains steadfast in our mission to build future leaders & create safer communities & this decision to go digital is the best way to accomplish this.”                      For More Info: campuspride.org

 

LGBTQ Community Mourns RBG Passing

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a champion & consistent voice for fairness for women, for LGBTQ Americans, for people living with HIV & for correcting racial injustices. Rea Carey Executive Director National LGBTQ Task Force stated, "Today we have lost a giant of justice, a champion for equality & progress. Justice Ginsburg was an American hero & pioneer, a voice for so many marginalized people, leaving behind a legacy of courage, tenacity & historic impact in creating a better country & a better world for all of us. We are all so grateful for all Justice Ginsburg has done for LGBTQ people, for women, for our ability to control our own bodies, for all that seek to move freedom forward in this country." Imani Rupert-Gordon, Executive Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights added, “Justice Ginsburg was a warrior for freedom & justice & we were honored to fight alongside her. That struggle is more important than ever. We will celebrate her life & grieve her loss. But above all, we will honor her legacy by continuing her fight.” Kevin Jennings Lambda Legal CEO concluded, “Throughout her entire legal career, including her 27 years on the Supreme Court, Justice Ginsburg fought for the rights of those on the margins. From her time as a lawyer with the ACLU Women’s Rights Project to her years on the Supreme Court, Justice Ginsburg spoke with a clear & strong voice against inequality & gender discrimination. A long-standing ally of the LGBTQ community, her unwavering support, both on & off the bench, was a testament to her commitment to equality for all people.” U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Rest In Peace we will continue your work.

Campus Pride Board Chair Tom Elliott

Campus Pride the national nonprofit dedicated to building future leaders & creating safe college communities for LGBTQ people has elected Tom Elliott as their new Board of Directors Chair. Shane Windmeyer, Executive Director of Campus Pride stated, “I am overjoyed that the Board of Directors elected Tom Elliott as the Chair. Since he joined the Board more than a year ago & became the Board Secretary shortly after, Tom has been a tremendous resource for me & the organization & I am eager to see how Campus Pride grows under his leadership.” Tom Elliott stated, “This is a pivotal moment for Campus Pride & yet in the middle of a global pandemic that altered the course of history & injected uncertainty in our lives, our mission remained the same. At Campus Pride, we aim to build future leaders & create safer communities for LGBTQ young people. We didn’t stray from that. Next year is the 20th Anniversary of Campus Pride’s founding, which presents a significant opportunity for us to implement a new strategic vision for the organization. It is an opportunity for us to re-align with the mission of the organization, as we see fit. It is an opportunity for us to develop new programming, or retool existing programming, that meets the needs of LGBTQ young people where they are today & in the future.” Elliott was a graduate of Campus Pride’s leadership camp in 2007 while he was a student at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Elliott is a founding partner of Acacia Consulting Group a strategic communications, public relations, and marketing agency based in Chicago, Illinois. For More Info: campuspride.org

Harbor To The Bay Cyber Friday Event

Harbor to the Bay’s 18th annual Cyber Friday is September 18th with their goal to raise $18,000 & for every $1 donated an additional $1 up to $18,000 will be donated to the H2B General Fund by Tim Stein in honor of Wayne Fette. Jim Morgrage, Harbor to the Bay President stated, “Tim has been a very generous sponsor of many of our participants & teams over the past 17 years & came on board as sponsor of the event last year. Tim in memory of his loving husband Wayne Fette set up a scholarship program for first time riders as a way of helping to grow our event, BTW it is NOT too late to apply for this year. Tim called me a couple weeks back saying, ‘I know things are very hard for Harbor to the Bay this year & I want to do more!’ So we worked together & Tim has made a challenge to all of our participants that if we can raise $18,000 on our 18th Cyber Friday on September 18th he will match that allowing us to raise $36,000 in a 24 hour period.” So far his year’s Harbor to the Bay virtual ride that has raised over $97,000. Rather than riding 125 or 68 miles together participants are encouraged to engage in whatever activity is safely accessible to them. This might mean several short bike rides doing 125 jumping jacks or dancing for 68 minutes so everyone is encouraged to get involved in a way that challenges themselves & promotes health. The H2B General Fund are divided 100% between their 4 beneficiaries; AIDS Action, AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod, Community Research Initiative & Fenway Health as they continue providing critical care during the ongoing pandemic. For More Info: harbortothebay.org


Lambda Literary Virtual LGBTQ Festival

The 4th annual Lambda Litfest will go virtual this year & run from October 5th to 9th celebrating & defending Black LGBTQ Lives. Each night of the festival is centered around timely topics vital to Queer Black art-making including, including Politics & Activism, Black Aesthetics & Writing in Hollywood. The opening night will set the stage by bringing panelists Jordyn Jay founder of Black Trans Femmes in the Arts Collective, novelist George M. Johnson & others together for a discussion on Black Joy. The week will cap off with a discussion of Sex & the Body featuring Brontez Purnell, KOKUMO, Randa Jarrar & others. Additional featured speakers include Juliana Huxtable, Darnell Moore, Ianne Fields Stewart, t’ai freedom ford & many more. All events are free & offer audiences the opportunity to listen & engage in discussion via Zoom with some of the most crucial voices working today. Lambda LitFest is a program of Lambda Literary the nation's leading LGBTQ literary organization whose mission is to nurture & advocate for LGBTQ writers elevating the impact of their words to create community, preserve their legacies & affirm the value of their stories & lives. Lambda Litfest resists the oppressive nature of a white supremacist, ableist, cisgender & heteronormative world by creating a space that uplifts & celebrates Black, Indigenous & POC folks in the LGBTQ community. This virtual event is supported in part by an Arts Grant from the City of West Hollywood as well as support from the California Arts Council & the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.
For More Info: lambdaliterary.org
LISTEN: Rea Carey Talks LGBTQ Task Force Virtual Agenda
 

Pentagon HIV Policy Goes To Court

Lambda Legal & the Modern Military Association of America (MMAA) have asked a federal district court to bar the Trump Administration & the Pentagon from discriminating against people living with HIV by denying them the opportunity to enlist, deploy or commission as an officer. In a hearing on two related lawsuits before the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on September 14th lawyers argued the Pentagon’s categorical bar to the enlistment, deployment or commissioning of people living with HIV is unconstitutional & asked the court to order the Department of Defense to allow servicemembers living with HIV to deploy & to serve as officers. Scott Schoettes, Counsel & HIV Project Director, Lambda Legal stated, “Today, we asked the court to recognize what the government refuses to acknowledge, that people living with HIV are as capable, safe & healthy to serve in the military as any other person. It is discriminatory & unconstitutional to deprive these servicemembers from serving their country because of outdated science & continuing prejudice. It’s unacceptable that even in the face of tremendous medical advances, the Trump Administration is erecting new barriers to the military service of people living with HIV. These discriminatory actions deny important career opportunities & perpetuate stigma.” In the two lawsuits Roe & Voe v. Esper & Harrison v. Esper Lambda Legal & MMAA joined by pro-bono co-counsel Winston & Strawn LLP represent two Airmen facing discharge & a member of the D.C. Army National Guard being denied a commission just because they are living with HIV.
For More Info: lambdalegal.org 
LISTEN: Rea Carey Talks LGBTQ Task Force Virtual Agenda

LGBTQ Task Force Goes Virtual (AUDIO)

This week I talked with Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force about their upcoming virtual events & how The Task Force is adjusting to the new normal in these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic. To begin with the 24th annual National LGBTQ Task Force Gala will stream virtually on Saturday October 3rd beginning at 8P EST in lieu of the customary gala held in Miami Beach, FL. This year’s theme is “The Power of US” which will focus on celebrating progress for LGBTQ people & their families. It will also emphasize the critical work of the National LGBTQ Task Force as they work to ensure that our LGBTQ community is counted through their “Queer the Census” campaign & the critical need to "Queer the Vote" in the upcoming election. The National LGBTQ Task Force Gala online event will be hosted by Latrice Royale of RuPaul’s Drag Race fame & the evening will include video messages from Pete Buttigieg, Alan Cumming, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, Sam Champion, Jai Rodriguez of the original “Queer Eye” cast & George Takei among others TBA. The National Task Force Gala virtual event will also be more accessible nationally & globally for supporters & members of the Task Force family with no fixed ticket price this year so any donation will get you in. So put on your tux or your sweatpants & join in the fun that helps support this fabulous organization. The next virtual events after the gala will be “Queering Racial Justice Institute” on October 10th, 2020 & the Creating Change Conference from January 27th to 31st, 2021. I talked to Rea about what she hopes to accomplish with The Task Force, their upcoming virtual events & her spin on our LGBTQ issues. LISTEN

 
For More Info & Tix: thetaskforce.org

Equality California Equality Awards

Equality California is presenting the first ever virtual Golden State Equality Awards tonight Sunday September 13th at 6P PST. This fabulous event is going online to celebrate our community's achievements & honor the inspirational leaders whose selfless work helps create a world that is healthy, just & fully equal for all LGBTQ people. Robbie Martin, Equality California Director of Development stated, “From the most powerful woman in the country to TV & movie stars & from an All-WNBA player to an award-winning drag queen, each one of them has a special message just for us tonight!” This year's Golden State Equality Award recipients include Pete & Chasten Buttigieg receiving the Equality Trailblazer Award, the Equality Visibility Award goes to Disclosure the Netflix Original Documentary & the Ally Leadership Award will be presented to Norman Lear. There will be a Special Tribute to Rep. John Lewis with US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi & Angelica Ross will host the event. Musical performances will be provided by Melissa Etheridge, Shea Diamond, Alex Newell, Robin S, Rufus Wainwright & Betty Who. Special guests include Laverne Cox, Gloria Estefan, Rita Moreno, Bob The Drag Queen, Sam Feder, Chelsea Gray, Keiynan Lonsdale, Tig Notaro, Conrad Ricamora, Amy Scholder & Zachary Quinto. This historic virtual event will start with regional pre-show programs celebrating LGBTQ & allied communities in Sacramento, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles & Palm Springs. Then everyone will come together from across California & beyond to highlight pro-equality champions & enjoy exclusive performances.
For More Info & Tix: eqca.org
Listen: Film "Surviving The Silence" Before Don’t Ask Don’t Tell 

Wonder Women Tech Virtual Summit

Wonder Women Tech (WWT) Foundation, the nonprofit org dedicated to empowering women, girls, people of color, the LGBTQ community, the underrepresented & diverse communities in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math) are presenting their first Virtual Summit Diversity Career Fair & Expo that takes place September 16th to 19th. Lisa Mae Brunson, CEO of Wonder Women Tech stated, “We are excited to continue to revolutionize Wonder Women Tech & all the experiences we are bringing people by taking the summit & network online & offering scholarships for tickets. I want women, people of color & all underrepresented groups to feel they have a community supporting them, deeply committed to their success & growth to become changemakers.” The Virtual Summit Diversity Career Fair & Expo will include a mix of amazing speakers, innovative workshops & networking opportunities. Embracing the unprecedented COVID-19 landscape the summit will provide interactive experiences & inspiring speakers now accessible for everyone no matter where they are located from students to professionals including those with disabilities. The 2020 Wonder Women Tech Virtual Summit will feature over 100 speakers including Alexandria Butler, Founder of Sista Circle: Black Women in Tech, Fireside Chat with Dr. Ellen Ochoa, Former Astronaut & first Hispanic Woman in Space, Fireside Chat with Barbara Whye, Global Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer at Intel, Keynote Speech from Dr. Lisa Coleman, Senior VP for Global Inclusion & Strategic Innovation for NYU & Andromeda Peters, Miss United States 2018 to name a few. Wonder Women Tech (WWT) seeks to create a shift in diversity & inclusion within STEAM industries & entrepreneurialism by offering revolutionary content & impactful discussions & producing year-round programming & national & international conferences.
For Info & Tix: wonderwomentech.com
Listen: Film "Surviving The Silence" Before Don’t Ask Don’t Tell 

Pentagon New Transgender Ban Rules

The Pentagon has issued new instruction entitled “Military Service by Transgender Persons & Persons With Gender Dysphoria” dated September 4th that replaces a temporary directive that reinstated the ban under President Trump last year. A new 40-page handbook outlines for commanders how the ban is supposed to work & attempts to justify why transgender troops should be banned on the basis of questionable assertions. It claims that “special accommodations for medical conditions requiring sustained medical intervention” would threaten deployability, readiness & lethality even though a panel of military professors debunked the Pentagon’s misleading claim that equal treatment for transgender troops is “special” treatment stating that “There were no ‘special accommodations’ provided to individuals with gender dysphoria” in the inclusive policy that was put into effect in 2016. Aaron Belkin, Director of the Palm Center stated, “Donald Trump’s continued attacks on transgender Americans who are putting their lives on the line for this country illustrate a consistent pattern of a commander in chief increasingly isolated from his own military. Instead of honoring & supporting our troops, he is targeting them for discriminatory treatment, just as he has reportedly denigrated military members over many years. The guidance issued last week doubles down on a ban that deprives the military of qualified personnel & which military leaders & scholars have repeatedly indicated has no credible rationale.” For the record General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff testified that there were “zero reports” of problems with the inclusive policy for transgender troops that was in effect for nearly three years a claim echoed by all the service chiefs. The Palm Center is an independent, non-partisan research institute that conducts scholarly analysis of U.S. military personnel policy with an emphasis on LGBTQ populations.
For More Info: palmcenter.org
Listen: Film "Surviving The Silence" Before Don’t Ask Don’t Tell 

Windy City Times Goes Digital Only

Chicago's only LGBTQ newspaper Windy City Times will move to a digital-only format starting in October. The Sept. 30th edition marking the paper's 35th anniversary will be its last print issue however their website will continue to be updated regularly. Tracy Baim who was one of the original founders in 1985 along with Jeff McCourt, Bob Bearden & Drew Badanish purchased Windy City Times in 2000 & became Windy City Times publisher. Baim who is majority owner of WCT joined the Chicago Reader as publisher in 2018. Her longtime staff took over WCT including Publisher Terri Klinsky, Executive Editor Andrew Davis, Managing Editor Matt Simonette, Art Director Kirk Williamson, Director of New Media Jean Albright & bookkeeper Ripley Caine. Tracy Baim stated, "I am very sad to see the print edition go away. Our staff, freelancers & drivers have given so much to Windy City Times over the years. I thank the team for really working hard to sustain WCT. Hundreds of people worked at & supported this company through so many difficult times. Windy City Times is not closing, but losing the print paper is painful. We know many people prefer the print model, but the economics are just not sustainable." Windy City Times was among only about two dozen weekly or biweekly LGBTQ newspapers left in the U.S. to hold on to print during the decline in advertising & support of newspapers in recent years but COVID-19 & its impact on the paper's core entertainment advertisers meant continuing a print paper was just not feasible. The Sept. 30th final print edition of Windy City Times will be a special collector's edition revisiting the last 35 years of its publication.
For More Info: windycitymediagroup.com
Listen: Film "Surviving The Silence" Before Don’t Ask Don’t Tell 

I'm From Driftwood Virtual Celebration

Celebrating eleven years of LGBTQ storytelling “I'm From Driftwood” is presenting a virtual event on September 16th from 7P to 8P EST on Facebook Live. This free fundraising event will feature a piano performance & chat with David Raleigh with a performance by Daphne Always & stories & interviews with Pearl Bennett, Arwyn Heilrayne & Pennsylvania State Representative Brian Sims to be hosted by Phil aka Corinne & Alex Berg. The event will kickoff the org’s 11th year anniversary fundraiser with a goal of raising $11,000 in 11 days & it's a Triple Match Fundraiser so for every $1 donated will be tripled. Nathan Manske, I'm From Driftwood Founder & Executive Director stated, “After being delayed twice due to global events, I'm From Driftwood has a new date to celebrate its 11-year anniversary on Wednesday, September 16th! We would love for you to join in the celebration from the comfort of your own home. We're going to have a Facebook Live event that will be jam-packed full of entertainment, including stories, performances & interviews with previous storytellers. Our message for 11 years has been to send a life-saving message to LGBTQ people everywhere: You are not alone. That message is more important now than ever before. This free event will be the kickoff to our 11-year anniversary fundraiser with a goal of raising $11,000 in 11 days. And here's the incredible news...it's a Triple Match Fundraiser made possible thanks to Tito's Handmade Vodka matching every dollar donated up to $11,000 & two generous donors matching the other $11,000. I look forward to celebrating with you on September 16!”
To RSVP...
Listen: Film "Surviving The Silence" Before Don’t Ask Don’t Tell 


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