One Orlando Alliance names former Alabama Representative as new executive director

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | The Board of Directors of One Orlando Alliance announced the selection of former Alabama Rep. Patricia Todd as the organization’s executive director in a press release May 1. The selection follows an extensive nationwide search that began in August 2017.

Todd becomes the first executive director for the One Orlando Alliance, a non-profit group of more than 30 LGBTQ organizations formed in the days after the Pulse shooting on June 12, 2016.

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Change.org petition calls for City of Orlando to create rainbow crosswalk

By : Rachel Dececco
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ORLANDO | The mass shooting at Pulse in downtown Orlando June 12, 2016 claimed the lives of 49 innocent citizens. Now a petition circulating online looks to turn an intersection near the nightclub into a spectrum of hope and remembrance.

The petition on the website Change.org calls for the city of Orlando to install a rainbow crosswalk at the intersection of South Orange Avenue and Kaley Street “to honor both the memory of the victims and the struggle of the survivors.” The S. Orange/Kaley intersection is the closest major intersection where Pulse is located.

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Pride Fund to End Gun Violence to launch Orlando campaign

By : Billy Manes
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As previously mentioned in Watermark, Washington, D.C., political action committee Pride Fund to End Gun Violence jumped into existence and immediate action following the June 12 Pulse shooting. The group, which claims, “It’s time to loosen the stranglehold that the gun lobby has on Congress and create the change we need to keep our communities safer,” is one of many philanthropic arms to this post-traumatic stress wake-up call. But it’s also one that could prove the most important on the political scale.

The Pride Fund is going straight to the root of the cause in a manner many organizations haven’t dared to do as of this date. “Pride Fund to End Gun Violence is America’s only LGBTQ organization dedicated to reforming our gun laws,” its press release reads. “Our Orlando community is central to our vision of electing pro-LGBTQ candidates who will act on sensible gun reforms to help prevent acts of senseless gun violence.”

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Downtown South businesses must make dollars out of senseless Pulse shooting

By : Nicole Dudenhoefer
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Orlando – About a month and a half after the Pulse nightclub shooting, Orlando is still tending to the emotional scars left behind by the tragedy. As the community tries to pick up the pieces, the financial struggles resulting from the June 12 massacre must also be battled.

While millions of dollars have been donated to numerous funds to help support the victims and their families, along with Pulse staff members who have been affected by the shooting, there is another group of people who may be in need of some financial relief as well: the businesses impacted by the Downtown South closure.

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Fun Home – A Benefit Concert for Orlando

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Fun Home – A Benefit Concert for Orlando

Show date: Sunday, July 24, 2016
Show times: 7 p.m.
Tickets start at $30.00
Walt Disney Theater

FUN HOME, the groundbreaking, Tony® Award-winning Best Musical, will play a one-night-only benefit concert performance at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts on Sunday, July 24, 2016. This performance will be a concert version of the musical to raise money for Equality Florida and the LGBTQ community of Orlando.

All nine of the show’s current Broadway onstage company members, including Tony® Award-winner Michael Cerveris, four-time Tony® Award nominee Judy Kuhn, 2015 Tony® Award nominees Beth Malone, and Emily Skeggs, Gabriella Pizzolo, Roberta Colindrez, Cole Grey, Zell Steele Morrow, and Joel Perez, along with the show’s Tony® Award-winning creators Lisa Kron (Book & Lyrics), Jeanine Tesori (Music) and Sam Gold (Director) will be in attendance.

100% of the net proceeds of this benefit performance will support the future work of Equality Florida, and the victims of the Pulse shooting. Half of the money raised will be distributed directly to victims and their families, and half will support Equality Florida’s work to end discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Hillary Clinton meets with families, friends of shooting victims, pays respects at Pulse

By : Jeremy Williams
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Hillary Clinton met privately with family members and friends of the Pulse shooting victims at Holden Heights Community Center July 22.

The meeting was followed by a roundtable discussion with members of the Orlando LGBT, Muslim and Latino communities including; Mayor Buddy Dyer, Commissioner Patty Sheehan, Equality Florida’s Ida Eskamani and Carlos Guillermo Smith, GLBT Center’s Terry DeCarlo, president of the Islamic Society Imam Muhammad Musri and Orlando SWAT commander Capt. Mark Canty.

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Have a Great Gay Weekend: July 8, 2016

By : Watermark Staff
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After a few weeks off, Great Gay Weekend is back to give you some ideas on how to make this the best possible weekend you can have.

While the events vary by type, style and time of day, they all have one thing in common: They all have heart, they all bring love and they are all about community. Enjoy your weekend Watermark readers. You deserve it.

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Jennifer Lopez, Lin-Manuel Miranda record new song for Pulse survivors

By : Jeremy Williams
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Global superstar Jennifer Lopez and Broadway’s golden boy Lin-Manuel Miranda have teamed up to record “Love Make the World Go Round,” a song honoring the Pulse shooting survivors.

Miranda posted a short video on Twitter July 4 teasing the collaboration saying, “[Jennifer Lopez] and yours truly went in on a tune… here’s a taste.”

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Puerto Rico unveils LGBT monument, memorial to Pulse victims

By : Jeremy Williams
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Puerto Rico has its first LGBT monument in the island’s history, which now is also a memorial to the victims of the Pulse shooting.

The monument is seven concrete pillars, each covered in colorful mosaics, and sits at the entrance of Sixto Escobar Stadium in San Juan’s Third Millennium Park, according to Noticel, a Puerto Rican publication.

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LGBT gun group memberships increase since Pulse shooting

By : Wire Report
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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) – Memberships have more than doubled in a national LGBT pro-gun rights organization since a gunman opened fire at Pulse nightclub, killing 49 people.

Pink Pistols Utah chapter President Matt Schlentz said Pink Pistols membership has grown from 1,500 to 4,000 since the shooting, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

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Chicago gun shop owner calls off raffle of AR-15 rifle for Pulse victims

By : Wire Report
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MCHENRY, Ill. (AP) – A suburban Chicago gun shop has canceled a raffle of a semi-automatic rifle to benefit victims of the Pulse shooting.

The Chicago Tribune reports Second Amendment Sports in McHenry, Illinois, called off the raffle following questions about whether it would be legal. Under Illinois law, only nonprofit groups may hold raffles.

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Police dispatcher calls from Pulse shooting released

By : wire report
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Orlando (AP) – Police dispatchers heard repeated gunfire, screaming and moaning from patrons of the Pulse nightclub who called to report that gunman Omar Mateen was opening fire inside the club, according to written logs released June 29.

The first call of “shots fired” came in at 2:02 a.m. and the caller reported “multiple people down.”

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