tcpride

Twin Cities Pride announced last week its slate of Pride Award winners as well as the 2015 Pride Grand Marshal.

Image via andreajenkins.webs.com
Image via andreajenkins.webs.com

Transgender activist, poet, and playwright Andrea Jenkins, will serve as Twin Cities Pride Grand Marshal. Jenkins was recently awarded a Bush Fellowship, a Fellowship in the Cultural Community Leadership Institute at Intermedia Arts, and named a fellow in the Many Voices Fellowship at the Playwrights Center. She is the board chair of Intermedia Arts, and co-curates the Queer Voices series at Intermedia. She recently served policy aide to Minneapolis City Council Member Elizabeth Glidden where she initiated and helped develop the the Minneapolis Transgender Issues Work Group and produced the first Transgender Summit in the city. Recently, Jenkins took on the role of Oral Historian of the Transgender Oral History Project at the Tretter Collection at the University of Minnesota.

Past Twin Cities Pride Grand Marshals include: Minneapolis Police Chief Janeé Harteau and former Minneapolis mayor R.T. Rybak (2014), former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe (2013), Lynx guard Seimone Augustus and fiance LaTaya Varner (2012), Anne Phibbs, Director of the GLBTA Programs Office at the University of Minnesota (2011), Gilbert Baker, designer of the LGBT pride flag (2009), former Minnesota Civil Liberties Union director Matt Stark (2008), and bisexual and transgender author Debbie Davis (2000)

juliedaffyd

Twin Cities Pride awarded the Lifetime Champion of Pride Award to Julie Dafydd. As The Column’s Keith Pederson wrote of Daffyd last year:

You may know her from a long-time commitment to raising funds and awareness as a royal on The Imperial Court of Minnesota. Or perhaps you recognize her from her years of writing ‘Consider the Source’ for Lavender Magazine. Maybe you know her from her countless performances on stage. But, after my last visit with the wonderful Julie Dafydd, I think it is safe to say that few know her as the young boy growing up in Soderville, Minnesota. Julie has stripped away the veil of privacy in her one woman play entitled “Soderville” in which she plays herself both today and in her past. … In [the show], she brings us back to the earliest years of her life and describes what it was like. Soderville was written for the stage by director Scott M. Rubsam after spending hours with Dafydd recording her to recapture her upbringing and transition.

aarpmn

Twin Cities Pride awarded the 2015 Corporate Champion of Pride to AARP Minnesota. TC Pride notes:

AARP has partnered with Prime Timers MSP, Pride and Little Brothers-Friends of the Elderly to create an area at Pride called Boomer Town. This area is focused on the seniors/elders of the GLBTQ community who have given so much of themselves. Without the work and dedication of those GLBTQ seniors/elders who had the courage to stand up for all GLBTQ folks, we would not be at this historical place as a community. The GLBTQ community doesn’t always appreciate the work of the seniors and elders and Boomer Town is an effort to address this issue.
We at Pride are aware of the issues faced by GLBTQ seniors, and are committed to working together to help seniors find the resources and support they need.

outfrontpride

Twin Cities Pride awarded the 2015 Community Champion of Pride to OutFront Minnesota. TC Pride notes:

For almost three decades, OutFront Minnesota has been advancing equity for LGBTQ people and families throughout our state.
In 2011, OutFront co-founded Minnesotans United for All Families.
In 2012, they worked with coalition partners and community members to defeat proposed constitutional amendments that would have limited the freedom to marry and restricted voters’ rights.
In 2013, they lobbied at the Capitol with other supporters to win marriage equality for same-sex couples.
Last year, OutFront advocated with the Safe Schools for All Coalition to pass the Safe & Supportive Minnesota School Act, anti-bullying legislation, which provides protections LGBTQ youth.
OutFront also worked with the Minneapolis Trans Workgroup to raise awareness and support for the City Council’s vote to change three local ordinances so that local bars and restaurants do not need to designate single user restrooms by sex, making access easier and safer for trans people.
We’re proud to call OutFront Minnesota partners and friends, and look forward to honoring them as the 2015 Community Champion of Pride!

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Andy Birkey
Andy Birkey has written for a number of Minnesota and national publications. He founded Eleventh Avenue South which ran from 2002-2011, wrote for the Minnesota Independent from 2006-2011, the American Independent from 2010-2013. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, The Star Tribune, The Huffington Post, Salon, Cagle News Service, Twin Cities Daily Planet, TheUptake, Vita.mn and much more. His writing on LGBT issues, the religious right and social justice has won awards including Best Beat Reporting by the Online News Association, Best Series by the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and an honorable mention by the Sex-Positive Journalism awards.

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