The Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center and Sixth Avenue present the West Coast Premiere of
“Crisply funny!” -The New York Times “At once poetic, political, sad, funny, timely, complex and compassionate.” -Chicago Tribune A fierce and funny new work from the playwright and producers of Hit the Wall, about the chaotic final days of an urban public high school, Exit Strategy is a riveting, edge-of-your-seat drama from a vital new voice in American playwriting.
Los Angeles LGBT Center The Village at Ed Gould Plaza Davidson/Valentini Theatre 1125 N. McCadden Place Los Angeles, CA 90038 2
September 29 – November 5 Fridays & Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 7 p.m. Previews September 26, 27, 28 at 8 p.m.
lalgbtcenter.org/theatre or call 323-860-7300
Marketing & Communications Staff Christopher Artalejo-Price Creative Services Coordinator
Ari DeSano Website Manager
Melantha Hodge Project Manager
Digital Communications Manager
Chief Marketing Officer
Creative Services Coordinator
Creative Services Coordinator
Creative Services Manager
Contributors Lisa Allen
Lorri L. Jean
CEO, Los Angeles LGBT Center
Faye Sadou Photographer
Richard E. Settle Photographer
Marki J. Knox, M.D., Board Co-Chair
Tyler Cassity, Treasurer
Kin Cheng Carolyn A. Dye Susan Feniger Annie Goto, Secretary Dean Hansell Ian Harvie
Ride. Love. Live. OH, YES, YOU CAN DO AIDS/LIFECYCLE!
Loren S. Ostrow
Learning Volumes HOW THE CENTER IS ENSURING LGBT HISTORY IS INCLUDED IN SCHOOL LESSONS
Green Thumbs Up! THE CENTER’S YOUTH GROW THROUGH COMMUNITY GARDENING
WITH SENIOR SERVICES’ RACHEL HERNANDEZ AND VOLUNTEER STEVEN MARTIN
The Buzz JOIN OUR CONVERSATION ON SOCIAL MEDIA
CEO Letter WE CAN’T GIVE UP NOW
Board of Directors
David J. Bailey, Board Co-Chair
Transparent and Centered ACTOR AND COMEDIAN IAN HARVIE JOINS THE CENTER’S BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Messages from the Resistance OUR COMMUNITY RESPONDS
Good Fellas WHY ONE COUPLE IS LEAVING A LEGACY GIFT TO THE CENTER
Why I Give BY JONATHAN SLAVIN
Peter Paige Jayzen Patria Frank Pond Eric M. Shore Bruce Vilanch
Subscriptions Vanguard is published quarterly by the Los Angeles LGBT Center, a nonprofit corporation. 1625 N. Schrader Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028, Voice 323-993-7400 • TDD 323-993-7698. Copyright 2017, Vanguard. All rights reserved. Printed in the USA. Publication of the name, quotation or photograph of a person in articles or advertising is not an indication of the sexual orientation or the HIV status of such person. Moving, getting duplicate mailings, or wish to be removed from the Vanguard mailing list? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SUMMER OF HATE
We Can’t Give Up Now
CEO Lorri L. Jean @LorriLJean
ifty years ago our nation captivated the imaginations of people around the world when the Summer of Love blossomed in San Francisco. Over the last few months, we’ve again captivated people across the globe, but this time many have watched with shock and revulsion as the person who is supposed to be the revered Leader of the Free World helped to usher in a Summer of Hate. In the waning weeks of summer our President struck blow after blow against love, against reason, against decency, and against justice. He kept the lies and the oppression coming as he summarily pronounced—contrary to all evidence and to the surprise and dismay of top military leadership—that transgender people would no longer be allowed to serve because they were a burden and a disruption. This was followed by his Department of Justice intervening in two very different LGBT civil rights cases in which the government was not a party to file briefs asserting that LGBT people are NOT protected by civil rights laws and that it is perfectly legal to discriminate against us. In the most recent case, the Department of Justice joined a group designated by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a hate group in defending anti-LGBT discrimination, essentially arguing for a constitutional right to discriminate against gay
people! The agency that is supposed to enforce equal justice under the law is now fighting to ensure that LGBT people are denied justice. The Prevaricator-in-Chief continued his appalling conduct as he attempted to defend the racist, neo-Nazi, murderous mob that disrupted the quiet community of Charlottesville, equating them with people who have laid their lives on the line to f ight for civil rights and even calling some of them “very f ine people.” I guess that’s what can happen when white supremacists are allowed to be appointed to important positions in the White House. But you don’t have to be a white supremacist to take terrible actions. In another betrayal of our nation’s students (following her February rescission of protections for LGBT school kids), Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced in September that her department is already rolling back 2011 guidance intended to address and prevent sexual assault in schools. In perhaps the cruelest edict of the summer, President Trump frightened hundreds of thousands of young people by calling for an end to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and telling them to prepare to leave the country. At least 36,000 of actual DACA participants are LGBT,
who could be sent to countries of which many have no memory and where their very lives are at risk from governments or societies that persecute LGBT people. Sadly, these examples are only a few of the deeply harmful actions taken by the new Administration. That the horrors in and after Charlottesville happened in the midst of Trump’s other harmful actions is no accident. There is not the slightest doubt in my mind that our President’s bombastic, divisive, xenophobic, and misogynistic rhetoric, both in the campaign and afterwards, has emboldened the racist, neo-Nazi forces that descended upon Charlottesville. As these professed racists have said, for the f irst time in contemporary history, they feel that they have the support of our President. Whether Trump genuinely supports them or is just pandering to them is irrelevant. It’s wrong. WHAT DO I REALLY THINK? President Trump is a disgrace. He is an embarrassment to our country and a danger to our community. Moreover, I believe he is a threat to the progress of American civil society. My opinion has nothing to do with partisan politics. Everyone knows I’ve been an equal opportunity critic of the previous three Presidents when criticism was warranted. But Trump is in an alarming category all his own. I’ve been f ighting for LGBT rights since 1979 and I have never been as worried as I am today. Never have the stakes been so high and the potential for damage been so great.
WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT? I wish I had an easy answer. The Center Board of Directors is in the process of exploring whether the Center should play a greater role in both trying to stop the carnage that threatens our community and ensuring that people who would destroy all that we’ve worked for are no longer elected to off ice. I know that the majority of Americans—regardless of how they voted last November—are better than this. I know that decent Republican and Democratic elected leaders must come together and say “Enough!” It’s time for a new kind
Despite how overwhelming it may feel, we must act and keep acting–f ighting every attempt of Trump and his Administration to harm our people and retreat from vital American values of fairness, freedom, truth, integrity, and liberty and justice for all. We’ve made enormous progress in striving for an America that lives up to the promises upon which it was founded, and we can’t afford to lose ground now. We can resolve to bury an agenda that seeks to divide and hurt people, and focus on continuing our progress toward a more perfect union.
We must GET INVOLVED—donating our time first and foremost and also our money—and urging all of our family and friends to do the same. of moral courage and leadership that puts aside more traditional partisan rancor in the interests of the Republic. The rest of us rank-and-f ile folk must also come together across all categories that have too often divided us. And we must ACT. I don’t just mean simply marching and posting on social media (although that’s important too). We must GET INVOLVED—donating our time f irst and foremost and also our money— and urging all of our family and friends to do the same.
Get Social THE CENTER’S SOCIAL MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS
2 4 1
ALL THAT GLITTERS
COSMETICS FOR CHANGE
More than 2,000 people turned out for the inaugural Glitter Run through Hollywood, celebrating the power and beauty of Southern California’s diversity.
In partnership with celebrity hair stylist Andrew Fitzsimons, the Center launched the nation’s first trans cosmetic donation drive. Fitzsimons brought some of his friends to the launch at the Center.
Had a great time at the #GLITTERRUN to help support the Los Angeles #LGBT Center! I should get this crap off by Christmas! @DGComedy Dana Goldberg
A Glitter And Be Gay morning for @TheGlitterRun Proud to support the incredible and vital work of the @LALGBTCenter & it was a blast! @ActuallyEmerson Emerson Collins
This morning we joined the @LALGBTCenter for its inaugural #GlitterRun in Hollywood. LA won’t let hate become normalized. @RepJimmyGomes
Proud of my love @andrewfitzsimons for marking his 30th birthday with the launch of a vital initiative…This program acts a bridge, accepting beauty and wellness products as donations, and distributing them to organizations that work with trans women and gender nonconforming folk. @JanetMock
I’m so speechless I can barely write this caption! Today was one of those days for the books with @constancezimmer at the @lalgbtcenter event for @andrewfitzsimons’ new trans cosmetic donation program!
A TOUR’S WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS
DONATING FOR A DIFFERENCE
Ben Cory Jones, writer and producer for Insecure stopped by the Center with Master of None star & Emmy nominated actress Lena Waithe.
Actress Michelle Trachtenberg (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and TV host Sydne Summer were among many who donated clothes for the Center’s youth members.
We had the pleasure of touring the Los Angeles LGBT Center yesterday. And it was ah-mazing. The work they are doing in LA is remarkable, especially for LGBT homeless youth and LGBT people of color. We’re getting more involved and they can always use more support. Go to lalgbtcenter. org to find out how. Thanks to the entire staff for hosting us for the afternoon. #LGBT #Pride #lalgbtcenterforhomelessyouth #LALGBTCenter @BenTheWriter
So excited to have dropped off 14 bags with @SydneSummer to @LALGBTCenter today!! Tons of clothes and accessories that will hopefully help! @RealMichelleT
JOIN the CONVO
For even more Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram interactions like these, plus all the latest LGBT community news, local highlights, and original content, find us on social media at: @LALGBTCENTER
We’d love to hear from you.
@AngelicaRoss Fall 2017
FROM THE GROUND UP HOW A NEW COMMUNITY GARDEN PROJECT IS HELPING THE CENTERâ€™S YOUTH LEARN TO TREASURE WHAT THEY SOW, WITH SUPPORT FROM THE JOHN N. CALLEY FOUNDATION AND CHEF SUSAN FENIGER.
few, if any, of the youth at the Center’s Youth Center knew there was a community garden just a few blocks away. But longtime Center volunteer Shawn Kravich was very familiar with the Mansfield Community Garden—and its close proximity to the Center sparked an idea. The young attorney with a green thumb recognized a ripe opportunity to teach youth how to grow their own fruits, vegetables, and herbs, and learn some life skills in the process. Since late spring, Kravich has been spending two mornings a week at the garden with increasingly large groups of youth who have come to consider the space a haven. “I’ve just been amazed at how many of these young people have taken to gardening,” said Kravich. “They all seem to genuinely love coming here and being outdoors and appreciating the fresh air. They have their own plots, plant their own seeds, and ultimately pick their own fruits and vegetables.” The program that Kravich has designed divides larger plots into smaller, individual spaces. This allows the youth to have spaces of their own to express themselves. “So many of these young people have been abandoned by their families. Many of them are experiencing homelessness and they don’t really have much of their own,” he added. “For them to have a plot they can take care of and have a sense of ownership over, it is pretty remarkable.” A small rainbow flag proudly stands at one end of the Center’s plot where there are carrots, peppers, corn, cilantro, tomatoes, artichokes, mint, basil, jalapeños, sage, lavender, and even some beautiful sunflowers growing. Participants make their own plant selections, take care of their own seedlings, and then share what they’ve learned and grown with the rest of the group. “I really enjoy getting the chance to come out here a couple of times a week to just get a little bit of an escape from the craziness of Hollywood and Los Angeles,” says 22-year-old Q. “It’s a really nice experience to just have a little slice of nature in the city to grow something.” Levon, 22, is at the garden nearly every day watering his sage and any other plants
NTIL THIS SPRING
in the plot that may look dehydrated. “I feel good being at the garden. I’m from the South and we have lots of trees and open spaces and I’m used to that,” he said. “There’s not as much of that here in Los Angeles. I love nature, seeing little bugs, the progress of the plants–the whole process of nature.” “I love the idea of harvesting–it’s way better than store-bought,” added Levon. “They’ve taught us that patience is a virtue. It’s a hope kind of thing.”
additions to a wide range of programs and services offered by the Center to LGBT and questioning youth, many of whom are experiencing homelessness in L.A. Kravich is also executive director of the John N. Calley Foundation, which has the mission of creating opportunities for unrecognized, talented youth. The foundation is funding the youth gardening program. The gardening program has caught the attention of many, including chef, restaurateur, and Center Board Member Susan Feniger.
I really enjoy getting the chance to come out here a couple of times a week to just get a little bit of an escape from the craziness of Hollywood and Los Angeles
• (Above, l-r) Chef Theodore Leaf, Center volunteer Shawn Kravich, and Center Board Member Susan Feniger at the Mansfield Community Garden.
Pea, 22, has grown giant sunflowers in the garden and learned some important lessons along the way. “I’ve learned how you can bring life to things with love and water,” he said with a laugh. “When you put time and love into things, you can make even better things for other people. You can grab all the vegetables and fruits and just make anything.” Such passion from the participants and an eagerness to learn is what Kravich was hoping for when he heard about this community garden that was without staffing or resources. “A garden in many ways is sort of a microcosm of the real world,” he observed. “In order to make a garden thrive, you need to show up, you need to be patient, and you need to work hard. And that’s what these kids are doing day in and day out.” The garden is one of the newer
At the garden on a late August afternoon, Feniger joined Kravich and fellow chef Theodore Leaf to give more than a dozen youth a two-hour cooking demonstration using the produce they had grown. Feniger picked tomatoes, cilantro, green peppers, jalapeños, corn on the cob, basil, and other ingredients to show the youth how to make fresh salsa and other dishes. “We’re going to make a salad with the mint and the basil,” she told the group gathered around. “When you’ve got a garden and you’re cooking at home, you don’t have to follow any rules. If you like it and it tastes good, it’s the perfect dish.” “You don’t have to have a lot of land to have a garden,” added Feniger. “You can have a little pot and grow tomatoes and mint. You don’t need to have a plot.” But for now, they do have a plot even if some of them don’t have a home. “It’s beautiful to have a place to go that’s quiet, calm, and safe, and where there’s a community of people around,” Feniger said after completing the cooking lesson. “This program is so nurturing.”
HAVEN’T BEEN ON A BIKE IN YEARS? NO FUNDRAISING EXPERIENCE?
AIDS/LIFECYCLE IS ABSOLUTELY FOR YOU (REALLY)!
WE DON’T EVEN HAVE BIKES.
ONTIVEROS’ FIRST AIDS/LifeCycle moment was in 2013, welcoming friends to Los Angeles at the finish line of their seven-day ride from San Francisco. “I was just so moved by everything that was happening, I knew I had to be a part of it,” said Albert, 31. “I signed up right on the spot, despite not having been on a bike since I was a teenager.” He then went home to convince his husband, Abraham Torrico, to sign up as well. “My first reaction was, ‘We don’t even have bikes. How are we going to do this?’” The Los Angeles-based couple, who met when they were both 12 and have been married since 2009, soon discovered that AIDS/LifeCycle’s “fully supported ride” starts as soon as you sign up. From finding bikes in their price range to appropriate training rides, the AIDS/LifeCycle staff and community helped guide the first-time riders through the entire process. “They really help you through any of the fears you might have about getting started,” said Abraham, 32. “Even after my first training ride, I thought there’s no way we’re going to be able to do this for seven days. But, we kept at it, little by little. We gradually increased our mileage. Then we added in some hills. Before you knew it, we were doing 80 to 100 mile rides.” “All credit goes to the AIDS/LifeCycle staff and our training ride leaders– they took such great care of us. If it wasn’t for their support, we would have been defeated after our first training ride,” added Albert. “They were convinced that we could do this, and that made us believe it too.” Rob Brouillard of San Diego signed up for his first AIDS/LifeCycle in 2013 after seeing a postcard at the Starbucks where he worked. “My friends were staggered by the idea that I would even walk to my mailbox, much less ride a bike that far,” said Rob, 36. “I didn’t know anybody connected to the ride and I really didn’t have an idea what I was in for.” Rob had little more than a 1981 Schwinn that weighed more than 40 pounds, one jersey, two pairs of shorts, and $3 in his pocket when he arrived in San Francisco to start the ride. By the time he got to the Day 1 lunch stop, he knew he had made the right decision. “If there were any shreds of any stigma I had about the LGBT community, they just melted away in this big bucket of love,” said Rob, who is heterosexual. “When I got to Los Angeles and then back home, I was losing my mind about how much it changed my LBERT
BUT, WE KEPT AT IT, LITTLE BY LITTLE... BEFORE YOU KNEW IT, WE WERE DOING 80 TO 100 MILE RIDES.
Above and Opposite Page: Members of Team Cretins.
life. It was the closest thing I’ve ever had to a genuine religious experience.” Rob came back to ride the next year, this time as co-captain of Team Cretins, who have gained prominence for doing the entire ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles on fixed-gear, or single speed, bicycles. “We don’t really do it necessarily to add a physical challenge. It was just that most of us didn’t own road bikes, so one-gear bikes were the only bikes we had,” said Rob. “It really shows that anyone, and everyone, has a place on AIDS/LifeCycle.” The inclusiveness of the AIDS/LifeCycle community is a point that’s also important to team Brown Brakers co-captain Noris Chavarría. “We were excited to create a space to represent people of color from the community and people who might be interested but either didn’t know much about the ride or were intimidated by the mileage or fundraising,” said Noris. Noris and his teammates did outreach through word-of-mouth at local community events and venues like diners and bars. “I try to have people learn to enjoy cycling. Inevitably they fall in love with the sport, even if it starts with learning how to ride a bike,” said Noris. “Fundraising can be really intimidating, especially for first-time riders. But, a beautiful thing happened this past year. After Brownies reached their fundraising minimums, team members redirected funds to the next person who needed them most. It all happened organically. If you wanted to experience AIDS/LifeCycle, we were going to get you there. Fundraising was a team effort.”
READY FOR MORE AIDS/LIFECYCLE? CHECK OUT EXTENDED CONTENT INCLUDING MORE ‘WHY I RIDE’ INTERVIEWS AT
CUPCAKES AND COCKTAILS
HILE THERE’S AMPLE support to help each rider raise the $3,000 minimum, lack of fundraising experience–or an outright aversion to it– is often given as a reason to not register. To help each participant reach– and more often exceed–the fundraising minimum, a large part of a new rider’s AIDS/LifeCycle onboarding focuses on fundraising tools and tips. The most important tip: be yourself. Really. For Albert and Abraham, that meant cupcakes. The couple has owned a cake decorating business for many years and Albert also taught cake design at Pierce College. “I realized that I had this large group of people in my life who we’ve met professionally or at school, and I was looking for a unique way to get them all in one room to tell them about what we were doing and how they could help,” said Albert. Their answer: Cupcakes & Cocktails, the couple’s annual fundraiser held at a local bar and centered around a four-hour cupcake decorating class. There are also cocktails, of course, and raffle prizes. Last year the couple raised $1,900 through the event. “Having the fundraising goal gave us a chance to be creative,” said Albert. “We’re not raising money just for research; we are raising money to help people who are living with HIV and AIDS right now. No matter how far we’ve come with medicine and prevention, it doesn’t matter if people can’t access it, and these medications can be so insanely expensive. That’s why it’s crucial to continue to do events like AIDS/LifeCycle.” The couple now trains as part of team Cyclepaths, which has a fundraising goal of $150,000 for AIDS/LifeCycle 2018. “We differ in ages, fitness levels, and come in an array of shapes and sizes,” said Albert. “We celebrate that we are people of color and we encourage each other to embrace what makes you...you!” And, after his second year on the ride, Albert became part of the AIDS/LifeCycle staff that had helped him so much. “This ride is where I belong, whether I’m riding my bike with my Cyclepaths or recruiting new cyclist for AIDS/LifeCycle, I get the most joy out of sharing this experience with others,” said Albert. For Rob and Team Cretins, community fundraising is vital. Each season, every member does an individual event along with four or five unique team fundraising events, which include everything from tattoo parties to alley-cat races at local bike shops. Since they started riding, the team has raised more than $217,000. “I always tell people that the ride is the icing; it’s the reward for working hard all year,” said Rob. On Team Cretins, a self-described punk rock team, this means focusing on why the awareness raised by participating in AIDS/LifeCycle is still so important. “For us, being punk rock has always meant that you get involved politically with anyone who needs help. A huge part of our team’s goal is to smash stigma in the straight community. We love this cause,” said Rob.
Above: Members of team Cyclepaths. Opposite Page: Members from teams SheSpoke and Brown Brakers.
OUR BODIES ARE A CANVAS.
N IMPORTANT PART of every participant’s AIDS/ LifeCycle journey, up to and including the week of the ride, is raising awareness about HIV and AIDS. For some riders, the message extends onto their kits–the jersey and shorts that cyclists wear. “Our bodies are a canvas and our kits were an opportunity to create something that brought a group of people together to raise awareness and provide education in a different way,” said Lola Catero, 31, who helped designed the kits with Cliff Warren for team SheSpoke for AIDS/LifeCycle 2017. “In thinking about the design, we realized how many women, and particularly women of color, have been and continue to be impacted by HIV and AIDS.” To amplify their message, SheSpoke joined with team Brown Brakers to bring awareness to the fact that women and people of color are disproportionately affected by HIV. “Most of the feedback on the ride was ‘how do I get one of those kits?’ which was heartening. I think people liked that we were pushing the community to think even more about social justice, even when it is already a community doing service work and fundraising for an important cause,” said SheSpoke co-captain Megan Shutzer.
I THINK PEOPLE LIKED THAT WE WERE PUSHING THE COMMUNITY TO THINK EVEN MORE ABOUT SOCIAL JUSTICE.
PEOPLE TELL YOU THAT YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL EVERY DAY.
EFORE MY FIRST RIDE , people would talk about the ‘love bubble’ and it sounded so corny,” said Albert. “Then we got there, and it hit me. This is what they are talking about: for seven days, people care for one another the way you want the whole world to be throughout the year. It’s magical.” “The ride has as many kinds of teams and participants as there are colors in the rainbow. What’s rad is that all these different people connect and have this amazing week together,” Rob added. On Day 6 of his second ride, Rob’s co-captain, who is heavily tattooed including the entirety of his face, broke down crying. Rob asked him what was wrong. “He was crying because it was the first time in forever that he had gone six days without someone saying a bad thing to him about how he looks. In fact, he was getting compliments about how beautiful he was,” Rob said. “On the ride, people tell you you’re beautiful every day.”
JUNE 3-9, 2018
SAVE $25 CODE: VANGUARD AIDSLIFECYCLE.ORG
Take 5 STEVEN MARTIN Minutes
HOMETOWN Huntington Beach, CA
GET TO KNOW CENTER STAFF MEMBERS & VOLUNTEERS
YEAR STARTED AT THE CENTER 2017
VOLUNTEER POSITION Advocate, Leadership LAB
I FOUND A PASSION FOR ADVOCACY.
When I was watching the votes come in the night of the presidential election, one thing became very clear: the fight for health care was now real and my life was on the line. I was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia about a year and a half ago, and I’m still alive because of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Last spring, I heard about the Center’s March Mobilization, where we could fight attempts to repeal the ACA. Before coming to the Center, I was feeling hopeless and was just looking to matter in the world. Through volunteering, I found my way out of those negative thoughts. The shared experience of the group has really helped me rebuild a new self-image, one I thought my cancer had taken from me. Together, we contacted thousands of voters in key states to help save the ACA. Civic engagement turns out to be a skill that I’m quite fond of exercising. Through the Center, I’ve found a lifelong passion to help my community through advocacy.
RACHEL HERNANDEZ HOMETOWN Los Angeles, CA YEAR STARTED AT THE CENTER 2015 STAFF POSITION Resident Services Coordinator, Senior Services
I FIGHT FOR LGBT SENIORS TO AGE WITH PRIDE. Our LGBT seniors have lived through some of the toughest challenges our community has faced. They fought for so long to love freely; now I fight for them to be able to age with pride. Witnessing LGBT older adults loving freely and openly has changed my life. One of my favorite moments was after a donor gave our seniors access to a filming of Wheel of Fortune. One of our clients was having a hard time getting around and needed to catch his breath, so we sat on a bench and spent the next two hours just talking and getting to know one another. We laughed, we shared stories, and he cried, telling me what it’s like to not have any family by his side because of his sexual orientation. The next day he stopped by my office, gave me a hug, and handed me a bag. In it was a small teddy bear and a handwritten note of thanks, which I still treasure. For me, we can never thank our LGBT seniors enough.
S ally Rid
e s A r lace e o r e P BT H i g ht f u l s G L R om How g Th e i r a s sro l n i C t s t Ge n iaâ€™ l i fo r a C in
STRONAUT SALLY R IDE is already in textbooks for becoming the first U.S. woman in space. But elementary school students in California will soon learn an additional detail about the woman who twice traveled in the Orbiter Challenger: she was a lesbian.
They’ll also learn about Harvey Milk, the civil rights leader who was the first openly gay elected official in the history of California, and about Charley Parkhurst, a California stagecoach driver who was born female in 1812 and lived as a man. “We’re not rewriting history. We’re telling history for the first time,” said Center OUT for Safe Schools Coordinator Krystal Torres-Covarrubias. “We’re giving students the opportunity to access a rich volume of history that includes key moments and people that have been strategically omitted from textbooks because they’re LGBT-related.” This effort stems from California’s FAIR Education Act, which passed in 2011 with support from the Center. The law requires the inclusion of the political, economic, and social contributions of LGBT people, people with disabilities, and people of diverse ethnic and cultural groups, including Native Americans, African AmeriHarvey Milk cans, Asian Americans, Mexican Americans, and more. The Center is part of a coalition of LGBT organizations that have been vigorously advocating to ensure the FAIR Education Act is fully implemented and that education in California is the most inclusive in the United States. Students will begin to see LGBT-related content in second grade through depictions of family diversity, like a story about a girl with two dads. It’s a simple lesson to show that there are many types of families. In addition to lessons about Ride, Milk, and Parkhurst, LGBT-related content for students in grades K-8 will also include: • Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court case that led to marriage Ja mes O b ergefell (fore grou equality becoming legal n d , mid dl e) in all 50 states. • Bayard Rustin, the gay man who was the chief organizer behind The Great March on Washington in 1963 that culminated in Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous I Have a Dream speech. • The Mattachine Society, one of the earliest gay rights organizations in the U.S. that was founded in 1950 in Los Angeles. • The Daughters of Bilitis (also called DOB or the Daughters), the organization formed in San Francisco in 1955 which was the first lesbian civil and political rights organization in the U.S. • The role of two-spirit individuals in some native cultures, prior to colonization.
Data published every two years by GLSEN points to LGBT-inclusive curriculum as having a positive impact on grade point averages and a student’s ability to go to college. It’s particularly vital when you consider that LGBT students report higher rates of bullying and harassment, higher rates of suicide and attempted suicide, and higher absenteeism because they are scared of going to school and being bullied. “LGBT students will no longer have this storyline that people like them never succeeded,” said Torres-Covarrubias. “It’s important for LGBT students to see themselves reflected in history and be able to say, ‘Hey! These people are like me and they were amazing, wonderful people. They made huge contributions to society and had a place to be in the world.’” The inclusion of LGBT-related history can have a positive and enlightening impact on non-LGBT students as well. “By telling the truth about the lives and accomplishments of LGBT people, everyone will start to realize that LGBT people have been around for a very long time,” said Torres-Covarrubias. “We would not be who we are now without this diversity.” While passing the FAIR Education Act in California was a major triumph, it was only the beginning. Implementing it fully could take several more years. “I think there’s a false narrative that says ‘we won, it’s over.’ That’s just not the case in education policy,” explained Torres-Covarrubias. “There are going to be some districts like Los Angeles Unified School District that will be great. We’ve been working closely with them for many years and they’re great on LGBT issues. But you’ll have some districts that are so small it will be harder to find out if they’re complying. There will be teachers who push back and there will be districts that push back, even though it’s mandated as part of policy.” Right now, the FAIR Education Act Implementation Coalition is working to ensure that LGBT-related content is included in all the appropriate history and social science materials. But it’s an ongoing battle. “We reviewed all the programs that were submitted and found that many of them either did not have enough LGBT content or had no LGBT content,” said Torres-Covarrubias. “We are working to ensure that the Instructional Quality Commission does not approve any textbooks that are not compliant or that they force some of the publishers to be compliant before they get approval.”
Photo courtesy of Amazon Studios.
From A Open Mic to Open Heart MEET COMEDIAN IAN HARVIE, THE CENTER’S NEWEST BOARD MEMBER
Top Left: Harvie on Transparent with Gaby Hoffmann. Directly Above: Harvie on stage during his comedy special May the Best Cock Win.
LL EYES ARE ON I AN H ARVIE , the Center’s newest addition to its Board of Directors. The stand-up comedian, who made his acting debut in Amazon Studios’ critically acclaimed Transparent, credits the Center’s Transgender Health Program for helping him become the man he is today. “If it had not been for the Center assisting me with my transition and hormone therapy, I don’t know if I would be where I am today,” said Harvie. “The Center helped me affirm who I am on the outside and made me feel better on the inside. The Center is also where my comedy career started to take off.” Harvie was starring in a television show on the Logo channel when he performed at an LGBT comedy festival at the Center’s Renberg Theatre. Harvie, who’s unafraid to joke about his upbringing in rural Maine and his transition, also landed a gig touring with the comic and Center-supporter Margaret Cho. “I’ve had the pleasure of coming out twice in my lifetime,” Harvie explains during his routine. “The first time I came out to my parents, I was a girl. I simply told
them, ‘I like girls.’ The second time I came out to my parents, I said ‘Mom, Dad…I still like girls, and I want to be a dude.” While challenging the traditionally macho world of stand up comedy and proving that laughter cuts across all gender identities, Harvie uses his time on stage to inspire others. “I understand firsthand what it feels like to not be able to see yourself in someone else,” said Harvie, who lives in the San Fernando Valley with his partner, Sarah, and their two dogs. “I am an out, proud, happy trans man—and I want to help other trans and gender non-conforming people feel like they exist in the world.” Harvie hopes to expand that message while helping create brighter futures for others as a Center board member. “The Center is the largest—and one of the oldest—LGBT organizations in the world. It is a beacon of hope and a refuge for people who need assistance, health care, or community. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that legacy?”
I am an out, proud, happy trans man—and I want to help other trans and gender nonconforming people feel like they exist in the world.
We Persist We Resist
SNAPSHOTS OF THE CENTER’S ONGOING RESISTANCE AND POLICY ACTIONS
“MY HEART DROPPED.” Transgender Army Reservist and Center staffer Rudy Akbarian at a press conference following President Trump’s tweeted intention to ban transgender individuals from serving in the U.S. military. Read more at VanguardNow.org/ban.
“THERE IS NO LONGER ANY QUESTION ABOUT HOW THIS PRESIDENT AND HIS ADMINISTRATION FEEL ABOUT LGBT PEOPLE. THEY WANT TO DENY US EQUAL PROTECTION OF THE LAW, THEY WANT TO SEND US BACK INTO THE CLOSET, THEY WANT TO STOP US FROM OCCUPYING OUR RIGHTFUL PLACE AS FULL AND COMPLETE MEMBERS OF AMERICAN SOCIETY.” Center responds to President’s intent to ban transgender individuals from serving in the U.S. military. Read more at lalgbtcenter.org/ban.
“WHEN THIS ADMINISTRATION TELLS THESE YOUNG PEOPLE TO ‘GO HOME,’ THEY ARE CHOOSING TO CRUELLY IGNORE THE FACT THAT THEY ARE ALREADY HOME.” Center denounces President Trump’s decision to end DACA. Read more at lalgbtcenter.org/DACA.
“WHEN THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES APPOINTS SENIOR ADVISORS AND CABINET MEMBERS WHO HAVE A HISTORY OF TACIT— AND SOMETIMES OUTRIGHT— SUPPORT OF WHITE SUPREMACIST AND 'ALT-RIGHT' PHILOSOPHY, THIS LAYS THE GROUNDWORK FOR THIS TYPE OF HATRED.” Center condemns domestic terrorism in Charlottesville. Read more at lalgbtcenter.org/charlottesville.
“WE STAND NOT ONLY WITH OUR LGBT BROTHERS AND SISTERS, BUT WITH ALL IMMIGRANTS WHO HAVE COME HERE TO ESCAPE POVERTY, DISCRIMINATION, AND VIOLENCE IN THEIR HOMELANDS.” Center supports Senate Bill 54, the California Values Act, which seeks to prevent state and local resources from being used to harm immigrants. Read more at lalgbtcenter.org/SB54.
The Los Angeles LGBT Center is extremely grateful for the support of the following new Sustaining Donors and Circle of Life members.
Bill Frew* Michael Koch & Andrew Kohler*
Bruce Daitch* Brian Huff* Sunil Nayar* Hillary Carlip & Maxine Lapiduss Joe Lorenzo Patrick O’Brien*
GOLD CIRCLE $6,000-$11,999 Daphne Dennis & John Given* Brent Habeck & David Cruz Kevin McCormick Michael Wolfson
STERLING CIRCLE $3,600-$5,999 Gerhardt Felgemaker & Jim Hill* Kristin Flickinger* Derek Hamilton* Jeffrey Kaplan Robin Ogilvie* Marcie Post, Angelia Bella, & Colin Finnila James Rayton* Stella Theodoulou, Ph.D. & Marti Harlow* William Thompson & Jack Vincent*
SILVER CIRCLE $2,400-$3,599 Anonymous Perry Brown* William P. Moore*
For information about Planned Giving or becoming a Sustaining Donor, please contact:
SILVER CIRCLE $1,500-$1,799 Mark Anderson Pamela Brooks & Angela Brooks Honorable Ron S. Galperin & Zachary R. Shapiro Leigh Hough Eric Lo Gary McNamara Cynthia Robertson, M.D.
CIRCLE OF LIFE Michelle C. Bonilla Thomas G. Rogillio Keith W. Endersen Frank H. Williams Robert P. Bergstein & Raul C. Cobian Kenneth Delalcazar Robert Loving Mark Denton
CIRCLE OF LIFE IN MEMORIAM Emily L. Gochis Donor list as of September 1, 2017 *Indicates an increase in membership level. ^Indicates a multiyear pledge.
Jennifer Dawson Director of Major Gifts email@example.com 323-993-8932
Erwin Sáenz Major Gifts Associate firstname.lastname@example.org 323-993-8939
Frank Stasio Senior Director of Planned Giving email@example.com 323-993-7690
REALIZE THE POWER OF A GIFT. Making the Center part of your legacy in your will is the most important contribution you can make to the organization. Ways to give include wills and living trusts; beneficiary designations; charitable gift annuities, remainder trusts, and lead trusts; memorials and tribute gifts; and real estate. By including the Center in your estate plan or making another type of planned gift, you help ensure a strong and vibrant future for the Center as we build a world where LGBT people thrive as healthy, equal, and complete members of society.
LEARN MORE AT LALGBTCENTER.ORG/LEGACY.
Good Neighbors, Now and for the Future HOW ONE COUPLE IS HELPING PROTECT THE CENTER’S FUTURE
EFFREY FISCHER AND JAMES VAN BEEK live just a few blocks from the Center’s Village at Ed Gould Plaza and the future site of the Anita May Rosenstein Campus. But the couple’s decision to include the Center in their estate plans by becoming Circle of Life members is about • James Van Beek and Jeffrey Fisher at The Glitter Run in August. more than being good neighbors. “While I am close to my family, the family relationships. In the process I with the Center since the early 1990s. traditional notion of leaving my estate found myself reliving anti-gay actions I’ve While in law school he was funded by a to them no longer makes sense to me,” experienced through the years. I revisited grant to work on the Center’s Legal Sersaid Van Beek. “What what it was like for me vices team supporting a youth law project. does make sense is to It was his first professional legal experience. to grow up gay and empower the legacy of “AIDS was ravishing our community closeted until my midthe LGBT community and the law project was an eye-opener for 30s, and then remain now and in the future.” closeted in the work- me,” recalled Van Beek, 49. “My social “Dark times compel place,” said Fischer, life as a gay man was a handful of friends us more frequently 54, who worked for looking out for each other, particularthan not to fight for 25 years in the invest- ly when someone got sick. It truly was our rights,” he addamazing to see how some simple advice or ment industry before ed. “But including the even small acts of service provided by the leaving to renovate Center in my estate and manage his real Center made a big difference in people’s plan is not about fear, lives. This showed me what we could do estate properties. it is really about hope.” together in effective and meaningful ways “I do not want the The couple, toas a collective community.” next generation of gether for seven years, Fisher added, “The work being done LGBT individuals to has donated to and by the Center is vital. It gives us a structure go through what I, and attended Center events to build our community around. It’s a proso many others, have for years. But the 2016 gone through,” he said. tector of our rights, but is also a forum to presidential election and subsequent threats “At a minimum I felt that leaving my estate celebrate our diversity across generations to LGBT equality inspired them to step up to LGBT organizations is a good first step… and to exchange knowledge, lend a hand, that commitment. and receive support when we need it.” with more to come.” “I had no choice but to reflect on my Van Beek, an attorney who works in life and evaluate my core beliefs and the health care industry, has been involved
We do not want the next generation of LGBT individuals to go through what we, and so many others, have gone through. Including the Center in our estate plan is not about fear, it is really about hope.
Free Saturday Morning Meditation
Join the Center’s one-of-a-kind education and empowerment program, presented exclusively for the trans* community. More than 840 trans* individuals have already joined the Trans* Lounge. Why haven’t you?
9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Join a supportive and non-denominational meditation practice. Learn to raise your gaze beyond finite understanding and explore the vastness of our infinite being.
Admission: Free (Donations accepted.)
Location: The Village at Ed Gould Plaza
Information, days, times, class updates, and schedule changes, at
How does Trans*Lounge work? • Sign up online for free. • Review and rate our library of workshops, groups, labs, and events. • Your feedback determines our schedule. • RSVP first for the programs you rated highest.
Sign up at translounge.org
. LEAD the way.
Become a role model and leader today! The Center is expanding our social networking groups and we need your help! We are seeking fluent Spanish speakers, people of color, gender non-conforming, and transgender folks to join our team of facilitators. Training provided; no experience necessary.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 323-993-7732.
AA Happy Hour Tuesdays–Fridays, 6:15–7:15 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 – 24
Coming Out Workshops for Women
Al-Anon Gay Focus Thursdays, 7:30–8:30 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 V
V Alcoholics Anonymous: It’s Come to This Mondays, 6:15–7:15 p.m. Canceled Dec. 25
Call 877-OUT-4-LIFE for recorded information and instructions for enrollment. More information at comingoutla.org.
V Gay & Lesbian CODA Tuesdays, 8–9 p.m.
V Marijuana Anonymous Wednesdays, 7:30–8:30 p.m.
To RSVP, email seniors@ lalgbtcenter.org or call 323-860-5830. Alzheimer’s LGBT Caregiver Support Every 2nd & 4th Thurs., 10:30 a.m.–Noon Canceled Nov. 23
Gay Men’s Prostate Cancer Support Group Every 1st & 3rd Tues., 7–9 p.m. Sponsored by Cancer Support Community Benjamin Center. Call 310-314-2555 or visit CancerSupportCommunity BenjaminCenter.org M
V OA Thursdays, 7:30–8:30 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 V Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous Thursdays, 6:15–7:15 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 V Sexual Compulsives Anonymous Mondays, 8:45–9:45 p.m. Wednesdays, 7:30–8:30 p.m. Saturdays, 10:30–11:30 a.m.
UA: Artist in Prosperity Tuesdays, 6:15–7:15 p.m. V
L.A. Leather Coalition Every 1st Thurs., 7–9 p.m. V
LGBT Adult Special Needs Support Group Every 2nd Wed., 6–7:30 p.m. V
M-Powerment: Kiki Casual gathering for gay/bi men of color ages 18-29 to discuss safer sex, community building, and HIV awareness and education. Oct. 9 and 23, 5–8 p.m. Nov. 13, 5–8 p.m. Dec. 11, 5–8 p.m. L
V Women’s AA Wednesdays, 8:45–9:45 p.m.
Peer-Led Groups Village Readers An LGBT reading and discussion group Every 1st Wed., 7:30–9 p.m. V
Oct. 4: Adam by Ariel Schrag Nov. 1: Eleanor and Hick: The Love Affair That Shaped a First Lady by Susan Quinn
M-Powerment: Rated M Monthly workshop for gay/bi men of color ages 18-29 to discuss safer sex and healthy relationships. Every last Mon., 5–8 p.m. Canceled Dec. 25 V
Positive Images HIV+ Men’s Forum Mondays, 1–3 p.m. Wednesdays, 7–9 p.m. Thursdays, 6–8 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 and Dec. 25 Call 323-860-7384 to RSVP L
Dec. 6: The Cosmopolitans by Sarah Schulman Jan. 3: Days Without End by Sebastian Barry H 30+ Lesbian Chat Meet women outside of the bars Every 1st & 3rd Fri., 7:30–9 p.m.
V Art Lab Fridays, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. V Bereavement Support Group Tuesdays, 1–3 p.m.
Bears L.A. Every 3rd Mon., 7–10 p.m. V
V NA: Heartbeat of Recovery Mondays, 7:30–8:30 p.m. Canceled Dec. 25
The Village 1125 N. McCadden Place
Coming Out Workshops for Men Safe, nurturing workshops for anyone who is facing their own coming out process.
For more information about Senior Services classes, please call 323-860-7322 or visit facebook.com/50pluslgbt.
V Crystal Meth Anonymous Saturdays, 9:15–10:15 a.m.
V Bingo 1–2:30 p.m. Call 323-860-5830 for dates
Senior Groups (cont.) V Opera Screening 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Call 323-860-5830 for dates V Silver Sensuality for Women Every 1st Mon., 11 a.m.–12:30 p.m. V Thursday Hikes Thursdays, 9:30 a.m. Canceled Nov. 23
Valley Social and Networking Group Thursdays, Noon–1:30 p.m. Metropolitan Community Church 5730 Cahuenga Blvd., North Hollywood Call 323-860-5830 Canceled Nov. 23 V Veteran’s Support Group Every last Tues., 1–3 p.m.
Chair Yoga with Master Lakshmi Wednesdays, 11 a.m.–Noon V
V Chi Gong & Tai Chi Mondays, 11 a.m.–Noon Canceled Dec. 25 V Financial Chat 3–5 p.m. Call 323-860-5830 for dates V HIV+ 50+ Men’s Drop-In Support Group Thursdays, 1–3 p.m. Canceled Nov. 23 V Housing Supportive Network Every 2nd Thurs., 11 a.m.–Noon
Life Connections 21+ meets 50+ 1–3 p.m. Call 323-860-5830 for dates V
V Lunch for Everyone Call 323-860-5830 for dates and times
Men’s Drop-In Support Group Wednesdays, 10 a.m.–Noon V
V Movies for Everyone Call 323-860-5830 for dates and times
Social Networking Groups H Bi-osphere* Explore and discuss the many shades of today’s diverse bisexual community Every 2nd & 4th Mon., 8–9:30 p.m. Canceled Dec. 25 H HERstories* A gathering place for all LGBT women who want strong community and great conversation Mondays, 8–9:30 p.m. Canceled Dec. 25 H Men’s Speakeasy* Great conversation for gay, bisexual, and trans men Tuesdays, 8–9:30 p.m. H Transgender Perceptions* Conversation & communitybuilding for transgender and gender non-conforming people Fridays, 8–9:30 p.m. Canceled Dec. 24
* Groups may not welcome late arrivals.
V Queers & Questions Every 2nd Mon., 7–8 p.m.
McDonald/Wright 1625 N. Schrader Blvd.
Highland Annex 1220 N. Highland Ave.
Offices on Las Palmas 1111 N. Las Palmas Ave.
Empty = Offsite
News and notes from the Center’s life-changing and life-saving programs and services THAT’S SO GAY.COM Valued at $6.9 million, the iconic internet domain Gay.com was donated to the Center by VS Media and Flirt4Free after the Center won the company’s “Gay.com Charity Challenge.” VS Media acquired Gay.com last year and wanted to donate it to an organization that would provide the greatest support for the LGBT community. “We believe the Center’s efforts with the domain will have a massive impact on the organization’s charity and the LGBT community not only in Los Angeles but everywhere,” said Flirt4Free President Gregory Clayman. Gay.com currently redirects visitors to the Center’s newly launched blog Vanguard, which shares stories related to the Center’s work and mission. Check it out at gay.com or VanguardNow.org. The Center is currently engaged in discussions regarding other uses for the domain.
READY, (OUT)SET, ACTION! Hollywood’s next big director could be at the Center now. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association, best known for hosting The Golden Globes, awarded a $50,000 grant to OutSet: The Young Filmmakers Project, a collaboration between the Center’s LifeWorks program and Los Angeles’ Outfest LGBT film festival.
OutSet provides LGBTQ youth with hands-on instruction in a fully-supported filmmaking environment with professionals in the entertainment industry serving as mentors. Films completed by OutSet participants are screened at Outfest and the Center’s Models of Pride LGBTQ youth conference. The grant ensures that OutSet will be funded for the next five years.
For more info, visit lalgbtcenter.org/outset.
BE BOLD, BE PROUD, BEDAZZLED More than 2,000 participants of all ages, sizes, races, cultures, sexual orientations, and gender identities sparkled in the Center’s inaugural Glitter Run, a 5K fun run/ walk traversing Hollywood. Along the iconic route, participants passed through seven “glitter stations” that gently coated them in non-toxic, washable glitter. After collecting their medals at the finish line, runners/walkers reveled in a Dazzling Dance Party. “We have learned through decades of our LGBT movement that the most effective way to overcome the hateful forces is to persevere and to have fun while we’re doing it,” said Center CEO Lorri L. Jean. “To laugh, to love, to camp it up. And that’s what we did– with seven colors of glitter.”
See and read more from this year’s event at vanguardnow.org/ glitterrun.
WORK IT! Using the Center’s innovative Transgender Youth Employment Toolkit as a guide, more than 100 caseworkers from the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles County received employment training to expand career opportunities for trans youth. Mayor Eric Garcetti spearheaded the series of trainings to help connect public and nonprofit partners to empower LGBTQ youth as they prepare to enter the workforce. “Young transgender people face significant challenges in entering the workforce and finding meaningful career pathways. Many of them who cannot attain employment face the risk of becoming homeless,” said Center Director of Children, Youth & Family Services Simon Costello. “This indispensable training to case managers and career advisors will help empower trans youth in becoming equal and complete members of society.”
A NEW DIRECTOR IN TOWN Kiera Pollock, M.S.W. has joined the Center as Director of Senior Services. Originally from New York, Pollock has more than 15 years of social services leadership experience during which she created and implemented a variety of multidisciplinary collaborative programs, including a child advocacy center, special victims center, and a comprehensive crime victims program. In her new role, Pollock, who holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from Fordham University, will oversee services and activities for the more than 3,700 Center senior clients as well as Triangle Square, the nation’s first affordable housing complex for LGBT seniors. Welcome, Kiera!
For more info about Senior Services, visit lalgbtcenter.org/seniors.
Analysis and insight from the Center’s staff on current issues and events facing our community President Trump’s Twitter announcement that he would ban transgender individuals from serving in the military was met with outrage by the Center and activists who gathered at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza for a hastily arranged news conference that was covered by nearly every local TV station and major media outlet.
The Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles became the first consulate or embassy of the U.S.’s neighbor to the south to require all of its employees to attend an LGBT sensitivity training, which was conducted jointly by the Center, GLAAD, and Lambda Legal, as reported by the Los Angeles Times:
A new Center outreach program is helping to identify people experiencing homelessness in West Hollywood and connect them with the Center’s services, including medical, mental health, and addiction recovery services, provided by staff who specialize in caring for LGBT people, as reported by Wehoville:
As part of Pride Month, YouTubers Ingrid Nilsen and Cat Valdes highlighted how the Center helps the community across generational and cultural divides, as discussed with Center staffer Melantha Hodge on the Ladies Who Lunch podcast:
As reported by KABC-TV, Center staffer Rudy Akbarian said:
MELANTHA HODGE MARIANA MARROQUIN Anti-Violence Project Manager, Legal Services
RUDY AKBARIAN Education and Employment Specialist, Children, Youth & Family Services
Excerpt: “The Center works daily with Latino LGBTQ clients, many of them from Mexico, who have experienced harassment, violence, or discrimination. Even though there are laws in California that protect LGBT people, the reality is
JAKE WEINRAUB Mental Health Clinician, Health & Mental Health Services
Excerpt: “I see myself as the referral person, the initial contact person. Unfortunately, a lot of people I talk to are using drugs or suffering from more significant mental health issues. It’s really about these repeat encounters and building these relationships over time. There’s so
Project Manager, Marketing & Communications
Excerpt: “It’s moving when you actually meet the people that our organization helps. Whoever is in the L.A. area that may need assistance, whether it’s help with coming out, or dealing with depression, or if you know anyone who’s homeless, or any seniors that are struggling, the Center is definitely a place that they can seek help.”
Excerpt: “I enlisted in the military because I love my country, because I wanted to become a part of something greater than myself. The military has empowered me to channel the strengths that I never knew I had. There is
we still see people discriminated against,
Watch the full interview at
Read the full article at
Read the full article at
Listen to the full interview at
nothing about us being trans that makes us incapable of completing missions.”
many from within their immigrant communities. With this training, the Mexican Consulate is setting a good example.”
much stigma about receiving mental health care and what that means.”
Cosmetic Donation Launch (1, middle) Celebrity hair stylist Andrew Fitzsimons, posing with UnREAL cast members (left) Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman and (right) Constance Zimmer, launched his unique project for members of the beauty industry to donate unused personal hygiene and cosmetic products, benefiting clients of the Center’s Transgender Economic Empowerment Project and other local trans-related organizations. Held at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, other luminaries included (2, l-r) trans activists and actresses Angelica Ross, Jen Richards, and Isis King, and a special performance by (3) RuPaul’s Drag Race Gia Gunn. To learn more about the Transgender Economic Empowerment Project, visit lalgbtcenter.org/TEEP.
L50+ Black & White Dance Held at Pickwick Gardens in Glendale, the Center's Senior Services hosted its annual event with amazing women—among them (4, left) Darlene Quinn and guest, and (5, right) Hermina Ban and guest. Everyone enjoyed the great music and (6) dancing.
To learn more about Senior Services, visit lalgbtcenter.org/seniors.
Out Under the Stars: Clue Hosted by the Center’s Young Professionals Council and Los Angeles Women’s Network, the summer outdoor film screening included a special visit from (7, middle) original Clue cast member Lesley Ann Warren, surrounded here by film aficionados (l-r) Mark Gaddis, Jason Conover, Dudley Beene, and Marcus Dockter. (8) Other guests feasted before the sold-out screening at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, including (9, l-r) Fabian DeGarbo, Tim Kline, Joe Gonzalez, Ben Fingeret, and Andrew Rubey. To learn more about the Young Professionals Council, visit lalgbtcenter.org/YPC. To learn more about the Los Angeles Women’s Network, visit lalgbtcenter.org/LAWN.
Sustaining Donor Dinner The Center honored its most generous donors and their guests at an annual fete held at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, including (10, l-r) Steven Blunt and David Tolbert; (11, l-r) Ed Imparato, Arthur Macbeth, and Bob Stiefel; and (12, l-r) Jennifer and Faith Ehrman.
To learn how to become a Sustaining Donor, visit lalgbtcenter.org/SD.
GED Graduation (13) Youth members of the Center’s Youth Education Program were recognized for their accomplishments by members of the West Hollywood City Council, including (l-r) Mayor John Heilman, Councilmember Lauren Meister, Center Youth Education Supervisor Mandy Litwin, Mayor Pro Tempore John J. Duran, Center Youth Education Coordinator Skylar PerezGrogan, Councilmember John D’Amico, and Councilmember Lindsey P. Horvath. Photo by: Richard E. Settle.
Circle of Life Luncheon 15
Held at At the P venue in Hollywood, the Center celebrated its Circle of Life members and their guests, including (18, l-r) Center Board Members Ian Harvie and Jayzen Patria, actor Jason Stuart, and Center Board Member Bruce Vilanch; and (19, l-r) Center Board Member Eric M. Shore and Rae Latt.
YPC: Queens (20, left) With moderator Jason Wimberly, the Center’s Young Professionals Council hosted a fascinating panel discussion featuring some of Los Angeles’ drag performers who are making a living—and a difference—in the LGBT community, among them (l-r) Gia Gunn, Katya, Mayhem Miller, Rhea Litre, and Sasha Colby. To learn more about the Young Professionals Council, visit lalgbtcenter.org/YPC.
Glitter Run (14) RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant Manila Luzon’s performance jumpstarted the Center’s inaugural 5K fun run/walk, with (15, 16, 17) more than 2,000 participants of all ages celebrating Los Angeles’ diversity and bedazzling the streets of Hollywood.
Distinguished Visitors at the Center To learn more about the Center’s vital programs and services, several notable guests took a tour of the Center, among them (21) Co-CEO of WME | IMG and Vanguard Award honoree Ariel Emanuel with Center CEO Lorri L. Jean. (22, l-r) Elizabeth MacKay, Center Director of Policy & Community Building Dave Garcia, Aurélie Brown, and Anne-Catherine Briand-Fortin from the Québec Government Office in Los Angeles. (23, middle) United Kingdom Member of Parliament Stewart McDonald and his boyfriend (right) Gordon Hawthorne, pictured here with (left) Center Director of Children, Youth & Family Services Simon Costello.
Before AIDS/LifeCycle, there was the California AIDS Ride which debuted in 1994 and benefited the Center (then known as the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center) and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation. Participants crossed the finish line (far left) in the business district of Century City, and Ken Thomason (near left), known to many today as the iconic Chicken Lady, was then a mere ‘chick.’ Join Chicken Lady and thousands of cyclists and volunteer Roadies on AIDS/LifeCycle 2018, scheduled for June 3-9! Visit aidslifecycle.org and use code VANGUARD for $25 off the registration fee. Images courtesy of ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives Fall 2017
WHY I GIVE
Why I Give Jonathan Slavin
ROWING UP GAY IN Pennsylvania during the ‘70s and ‘80s, I seriously thought there was something wrong with me. I didn’t have many LGBT role models to look up to other than Terry Sweeney, the f irst openly gay cast member of Saturday Night Live. After moving to Los Angeles, I made it my mission—as cheesy as it sounds—to make this world a better place for the future generations of the LGBT community. Earlier this year, I signed up to be a mentor through the Center’s LifeWorks program because, no matter how much love and support LGBT youth receive from their families and friends, there’s still a sense of longing—a sense of feeling left out in life—when you don’t have anyone you can relate to in your life. If I want my community to stay alive, I must do my part—no matter how big or small—to enhance the lives of LGBT youth. I want them to have an amazing life, and I want them to have it right now. My aff inity for the Center really dates back more than two decades when AIDS ravaged our community and the Center was at the forefront of the f ight against the disease. I participated in my f irst AIDS/LifeCycle in 2001. It was
something I wanted to do for several years after watching my friends cross the f inish line and witnessing the unforgettable Riderless Cycle Ceremony. My husband Michael and I lost countless friends to the disease—Michael’s former
If I want my community to stay alive, I must do my part—no matter how big or small— to enhance the lives of LGBT youth. partner died from AIDS-related complications—so I rode in memory of them. I never would have predicted that— just a few months after biking 545 miles from San Francisco to Los Angeles—I would someday be riding again for my brother Avi. I vividly remember how Avi broke
the news to us. My parents and I were on our way to Palm Springs. From the rear view mirror, I watched my dad’s face suddenly become pale as he spoke with Avi over the phone. Not only was he positive, he was already sick. I actually tried to convince Avi to move from Florida to Los Angeles because I knew the Center could help save his life by giving him the tremendous, compassionate care that he needed and the access to vital medications at low or no cost. Predating the Affordable Care Act, my brother struggled for years to pay for his meds and his regular blood tests out of pocket. Gratefully, my brother is not just alive, but is doing well. But, upon ref lecting on the hardships my brother had to endure to receive care in Florida, I’ve realized how lucky I—you—we are to be living in a city that has a welcoming place like the Center. As the world’s largest LGBT organization, the Center clearly is doing something right. And I will continue to be on the right side of history with the Center.
Slavin, a three-time AIDS/LifeCycle participant, returns this fall in the ABC sitcom Speechless. Register for AIDS/LifeCycle 2018, scheduled for June 3–9, by visiting aidslifecycle.org. For more information on how to become a mentor, visit LifeWorksLA.org.
Justice for all. lalgbtcenter.org/lgbtrights
McDonald/Wright Building 1625 N. Schrader Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90028