Kevin Jennings named CEO of Lambda Legal

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Kevin Jennings is the new CEO of Lambda Legal. Photo courtesy Jennings.

Longtime LGBT rights advocate and former Obama administration official Kevin Jennings will become the CEO of Lambda Legal, the organization announced Monday.

“Being Lambda Legal’s CEO is a dream job that anyone would love to have, and I am thrilled to be stepping into this role at such a critical time for Lambda and our nation,” Jennings said in a statement. “From my childhood as the son of a Southern Baptist preacher to when I became a member of the Obama administration, I’ve known what it’s like to be the target of hateful, anti-LGBT bullies, but those attacks only made me more determined to challenge them.”

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Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade launch LGBTQ shirt line

By : Lora Korpar
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ABOVE: Gabrielle Union, Dwayne Wade and their family. (from Instagram)

Actress Gabrielle Union and basketball star Dwayne Wade are showing support for their son by launching a line of LGBTQ-inclusive T-shirts.

The couple is partnering with clothing company YnG DnA to create the limited-edition shirts, reading “Please Remain Inclusive and Dedicated 2 Equality.”

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‘Riverdale’ to receive award from LGBTQ education group GLSEN

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: “Riverdale” cast. (Photo from Facebook)

LOS ANGELES (AP) | The cast and creators of “Riverdale” will receive an award from a gay rights education group for the show’s portrayal of LGBTQ relationships in a high school setting.

The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) announced Sept. 9 that “Riverdale” will be honored with its Gamechanger Award. The group cited the show’s “groundbreaking storytelling about LGBTQ relationships” as why it was chosen to receive the honor.

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Octavia Spencer to be honored by GLSEN with Inspiration Award

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: Octavia Spencer. (From Wikimedia Commons)

LOS ANGELES (AP) | Octavia Spencer will be honored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network with its Inspiration Award at a gala later this year.

The group known as GLSEN announced Aug. 13 that the Oscar-winning star of “Hidden Figures,” “The Shape of Water” and “The Help” will receive the honor at the group’s Respect Awards, presented in October in Beverly Hills, California.

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Disney earns perfect score on HRC workplace equality report

By : Lauren Lee
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ORLANDO | The Walt Disney Company earned a perfect score of 100 on the 2019 Corporate Equality Index (CEI). The CEI is a national survey administrated by the Human Rights Campaign that evaluates corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality.

“We are committed to creating and sustaining a welcoming environment for all our employees,” said Latondra Newton, senior vice president and chief diversity officer of The Walt Disney Company, in a post on the company’s website. “We are proud of our longstanding commitment to LGBTQ workplace equality and recognize that we thrive when all people are valued and encouraged.”

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Idaho LGBTQ youth feel unsafe at school, survey shows

By : wire report
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) | Most of the Idaho youth who took part in a national survey of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer teenagers say they regularly hear homophobic remarks at school.

The Times-News reports the findings consistent with the national results of GLSEN’s 2017 “National School Climate Survey.” The organization was previously called the Gay and Lesbian Independent School Teachers Network but now goes by the acronym, which organization members pronounce “glisten.”

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Luke Blankenship: St Pete Pride Executive Director

By : Scion Crowder
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Scion Crowder

Luke Blankenship started college wanting to work in LGBTQ advocacy, and shortly after found himself running the largest Pride organization in the state of Florida: St Pete Pride.

Luke was named executive director (ED) in May, making him the youngest ED of a Pride organization in the country. He joined St Pete Pride five years ago as a general volunteer and since then worked as logistics coordinator, parade director, development director and now ED. He oversees the day-to-day operations in collaboration with the board of directors and oversees sponsorships, financial strategy, event planning, magazine production, the social media presence and maintains local government and city relations. Luke is constantly working towards becoming a better person and ED. He may be young but he is continuing to educate himself by attending leadership seminars and is currently in the process of becoming a certified nonprofit ED.

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Halsey slams Victoria’s Secret for transphobic comments

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the national LGBT media association
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Halsey performed at the 2018 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, which aired on Dec. 2, but the 24-year-old singer followed up her performance by criticizing the brand’s transphobic controversy in an Instagram post.

The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show was filmed in November in New York City. Ed Razek, chief marketing officer for Victoria’s Secret’s parent company L Brands, made some controversial comments about diversity among the underwear label’s models in a November interview with Vogue.

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Yara Shahidi urges fight against ‘identity blind narrative’

By : wire report
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LOS ANGELES (AP)| Yara Shahidi brought the crowd to its feet at the GLSEN Respect Awards as she warned against an “identity blind narrative” in the struggle for acceptance of all.

“We should all feel deserved and supported in expressing our right to being our whole selves, limited by nothing regardless of ethnicity, gender, identity, sexuality, ability, religion or any other identity that we choose,” the 18-year-old “grown-ish” actress said Oct. 19 at a ceremony in Beverly Hills, California. “More than that, the common spaces we must maneuver through should be safe spaces in which our presence and existence are inherently valued.”

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GLSEN Tampa Bay announces third annual fundraiser

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Education network GLSEN Tampa Bay has announced that “Breaking the Silence,” its third annual fundraiser for Tampa Bay youth, will be held at Jackson’s Bistro in Downtown Tampa Sept. 29.

“GLSEN Tampa Bay’s mission is to create safe and affirming schools in Hillsborough County as every student, in every school, should be valued and treated with respect,” the organization’s announcement reads. “GLSEN believes that all students deserve a safe and affirming school environment where they can learn and grow.”

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Yara Shahidi, Ellen Pompeo to be honored by GLSEN group

By : wire report
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LOS ANGELES (AP)| Yara Shahidi will be honored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network for her advocacy for girls’ education at a gala later this year.

The group known as GLSEN announced Wednesday that the “grown-ish” star will receive its Game Changer Award at its Respect Awards, presented in October in Beverly Hills, California. Shahidi has advocated for gender parity in science, technology and engineering fields.

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Brendon Urie donates $1 million to support LGBT youth

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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Panic! at the Disco frontman Brendon Urie has teamed up with GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) to establish GSA (Gender & Sexuality/Gay-Straight Alliance) clubs in high schools across America.

“For years my fans have inspired me with their determination and creativity as they have created a safe and inclusive community,” Urie said in a statement. “I felt the time had come for me to join them boldly, to bring that energy and power to bear on the huge challenges facing our whole society.”

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