The Gala – now in its third year – celebrates the contributions of high-profile straight allies who are moving equality forward for their LGBT friends, family, and colleagues in their fields. Through their words, actions, and (often unique) voices they are making the case that equality is an issue for everyone.
This year’s class of awardees once again proved that standing up for what’s right can come in a multitude of different forms and expressions. We heard from Lynn DeStasio at MetLife who proved that inclusion at work is a job for us all (and, based on our gift bags, it seems that Snoopy is in on the conversation, too). Wrestler Hudson Taylor taught us that people don’t need a family connection to support LGBT equality – they just need to see it as the right thing to do. Charlaine Harris (the creator of the Sookie Stackhouse series on which HBO’s series TRUE BLOOD is based) made the simply powerful point that writing her stories is just one more way to help correct the wrongs of inequality. And Rosie Perez fearlessly and in a way that is quintessential Rosie called on everyone to shed their prejudices and speak out.
Oh…and if that wasn’t enough, we had the hysterical comedian and writer Carol Leifer emceeing the show, the amazing Broadway Boys serenading us, and a spectacular and memorable performance from Grammy winner Michael Feinstein.
It was a great party, but more importantly, it was an amazing evening to honor everyone who is changing the face of what equality is. And if, by chance, you weren’t able to join us, there will be another opportunity in April 2012. In the meantime, don’t forget that you can start becoming more engaged by visiting www.straightforequality.org and learning more about the training programs that we’re offering.