St. Petersburg – For the fourth year in a row, St. Pete Pride is asking the community of Tampa Bay to select its grand marshals. On March 8, the organization revealed its 2015 nominees and the community has until March 27 to make their selections.
Those nominees are selected by the board of St. Pete Pride and each has made significant contributions toward LGBT rights in Tampa Bay and in the state.
There is also the return of “Community Grand Marshal” and this year’s nominees in that category are The Rainbow Recovery Club, Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County and the West Coast AIDS Foundation.
In years past, individual grand marshal nominees were divided by gender. This year, individual grand marshals are non-gender identified and community members can select any three deemed worthy of the position.
The nominees for individual grand marshal for 2015 are Larry Biddle, Nick Janovsky, Ashley Brundage, Rev. Dr. Candace Shultis, Frank Hay, Nancy Greenlees, Kevin Johnson and Frank Clemente.
Biddle is chair of Equality Florida’s 2015 Equality Florida Greater St. Petersburg Gala and director of Metro Wellness and Community Center’s new LGBT Welcome Center. He is also a past executive director of the Tampa International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.
Nick Janovsky, public relations director for Smith & Associates, is a veteran in politics and has worked for 10 years on various political campaigns. He is a mentor to political science students and is the author of the book Gay: A New Path Forward.
Ashley Brundage is a highly regarded personal and business relationship banker for PNC Bank in Tampa. She was hired into her current role after transitioning and has since become a spokeswoman for transgender issues within and outside of the LGBT community. She has been married to her wife, Whitney, for 12 years and the two are raising their sons, Bryce and Blake. Brundage is also the president of the Tampa Bay Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.
The Rev. Dr. Candace R. Shultis is the senior pastor at King of Peace MCC in St. Petersburg. She holds a baccalaureate degree from the University of Massachusetts and a Masters and Doctorate from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. She was called to pastor at King of Peace MCC in December of 2007.
Frank Hay is best known as the founder and director of the Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps, or ROTC. The color guard and bugle corps is a staple at Pride events and fundraisers and has helped raise money for a number of organizations. Twelve years after founding the group, ROTC now performs across the state and the country.
Nancy Greenlees is a long-time member of the Hillsborough County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus and has been in Tampa Bay since 1975. She has been involved behind the scenes in a variety of social, economical and environmental movements. She is a member of Crescendo and a volunteer at TIGLFF and Community Tampa Bay.
Kevin Johnson is a St. Petersburg native, bartender and active fundraiser for the AIDS Service Association of Pinellas. He contributesthrough extreme couponing and donates 95% of the items he purchases to ASAP’s food pantry.
Frank Clemente is a part owner of ConceptBait and has volunteered for or helped almost every LGBT organization in Tampa Bay. His designs have been used by Equality Florida, TIGLFF, Metro Wellness and more.
The community is welcome to vote for the nominees at StPetePride.com. Voting continues until 11:45 p.m., Friday, March 27.