The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival turns 30

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Police officers and protesters far outnumbered patrons during the inaugural Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) in 1990.

It was the result of animus and interest surrounding one of the earliest publicized LGBTQ gatherings in downtown Tampa. While details surrounding TIGLFF’s founding are scarce, early accounts advise leaders from the Tampa Bay Gay Men’s Chorus, Bay Area Human Rights Coalition and Tampa Bay Business Guild formed the festival for two purposes.

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PHOTOS: TIGLFF launches 30th year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) kicked off its upcoming 30th celebration with its annual launch party at the historic Rialto Theatre Sept. 12.

The party was first organized 12 years ago by TIGLFF Co-President Ed Lally. It has since become the festival’s largest fundraiser.

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Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival launches 30th year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: TIGLFF 29’s launch party in Sept. 2018. Photo by Ryan Williams-Jent.

TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) will kick off its 30th annual celebration with its launch party at the Rialto Theatre Sept. 12 from 7-9:30 p.m.

The festival’s launch party is an annual tradition first organized 12 years ago. TIGLFF Co-President Ed Lally, who has chaired the event since its inception, calls it the organization’s largest fundraiser.

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Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival auditioning executive director

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) is hiring an executive director ahead of the organization’s 30th annual celebration.

“Be yourself, out and proud as the new executive director of the Tampa Bay International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival,” TIGLFF shared via social media. “We are seeking a dynamic, forward thinking leader to help grow the film festival into the coming decade.”

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TIGLFF names co-presidents for 30th year

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) has named 2018 board members Mariruth Kennedy and Ed Lally as co-presidents for the organization’s 30th year.

TIGLFF, one of the largest and longest-running festivals of its kind, exists to showcase a selection of compelling film and video by, for or about the LGBTQ community. Its 29th celebration entertained audiences with over 30 selections Oct. 5-13.

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PHOTOS: TIGLFF launches 29th year in Tampa Bay

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The Tampa Bay International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival (TIGLFF) kicked off its 29th year with a launch party at The Vault Sept. 13.

“This year the TIGLFF board and staff have recommitted to making the festival for the community,” event co-chairs and board members Ed Lally and Rob Adkins shared ahead of the celebration. “The festival was founded for the community to come together, and while times have changed and access to LGBTQ+ film has expanded, the annual festival is still a time to view world-class cinema together with friends old and new.”

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Baker action: Opponents of former mayor Rick Baker sound off on his equality record

By : Samuel Johnson
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ST. PETERSBURG – We will go forward; we’ve come too far to go back. This was the overarching sentiment of some 20 LGBTQ advocates at a press conference in Saint Petersburg May 11. They gathered on the front steps of City Hall to voice their concerns about ex-St. Pete mayor, Rick Baker, and his announcement that he is entering the city’s mayoral race for this year.

Ed Lally is a St. Pete resident who works with Equality Florida. He was on hand for the event, brandishing a “Rick Baker Never” sign. Lally didn’t mince words in his assessment of Baker. “He’s not a man for equality for the whole community. I don’t trust the guy and would never vote for him. … His prior actions with the LGBT community would rate a big fat F,” he says.

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And your 2017 St. Pete Pride Grand Marshals are…

By : Staff Report
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Just as in the last few years, St. Pete Pride gave the responsibility of choosing the 2017 St. Pete Pride Grand Marshals over to the people, and this year you did not disappoint.

After counting up all of the votes, St. Pete Pride announced the winners at a ceremony earlier this month.

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Equality Florida celebrates two decades of making change happen for our LGBTQ community

By : Billy Manes
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“Does this look OK?”

There are yachts. There is a breeze. There is Charlie Crist’s condo out of the corner of the eye. But on this day in St. Petersburg, March 22, there is only one figure that absolutely matters, and she’s sitting on a tree close to Cassis American Brasserie, posing for her cover shot.

Nadine Smith is the force behind most LGBTQ measures that have changed Florida’s societal landscape. Her calm tones weighted by heavy thoughts have come to define the nature of Equality Florida, the organization she formed with Miami’s Stratton Pollitzer 20 years ago. She played rugby at the Air Force academy, she says, but she didn’t know where the score would go thereafter.

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EQFL’s Feb. 22 Tampa Gala on track to break records

By : Steve Blanchard
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Tampa – If ticket sales continue to go as they have the last few months, Tampa is poised to set records with its fundraising totals at this month’s Equality Florida Gala. The Feb. 22 event, held at The Vault on Franklin St., could easily raise $225,000. But that doesn’t mean organizers wouldn’t appreciate adding more to the coffers.

“All of the money goes to the same bucket,” explained Ed Lally, Equality Florida’s Central Florida Corporate and Development Manager. “All of the money raised at all of our galas goes to our program services. A bulk is used for educating the public on our objectives and how we can achieve them. The most exciting thing is that we now have this marriage equality lawsuit filed, and there’s quite a buzz over it. Money is needed to fuel that suit as it makes its way through the courts.”

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