Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-04-24
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Indivisible Aurora, Nicole Maines honored at HRC Chicago gala
by Liz Baudler
2018-10-28

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

      More Photos


Amidst the usual fundraising and celebration were on the table, Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) Chicago's Oct. 27 gala at the Marriott Downtown perhaps had a more somber tone than usual. Speakers often referenced the day's earlier news of the mass shooting incident at the Tree of Life synagogue in their remarks as a reminder of why activism like theirs was important to support.

The hundreds of well-dressed guests adorned their faces with masquerade masks, in keeping with the pre-Halloween theme of "Equality Unmasked." After a pre-dinner reception and perusal of the many silent-auction items donated by Chicago-area businesses, organizations and artists, the crowd filed into the ballroom for the main program.

Gala co-chairs Penelope Garcia and Tory Mitchell opened the evening by highlighting HRC's work throughout the year, including video headlines of some of the Trump administration's actions against LGBTQ equality.

Deena Fidas, director of workplace equality for the national HRC, talked about the organization's grassroots campaign to turn out voters for the Nov. 6 midterm election, which she called the largest in the organization's history.

"These are the most critical votes America will cast in decades," she said, and referred to the record number of LGBTQ candidates as "not just a blue wave, but a rainbow wave."

According to Fidas, 30,000 voters have been registered by HRC volunteers, but she still encouraged the room to "bring out the vote and take people with you."

She also mentioned that a history-making 609 businesses received a score of 100 percent on the Corporate Equality Index, which is in its 16th year.

Federal Club Xavier Esters shared his personal story about his and his trans aunt's coming out as an example of the kind of people HRC's work helps protect. After dinner, lesbian comedienne Dana Goldberg ran a spirited live auction peppered with political humor. And American Idol finalist Kimberly Locke closed the evening with a selection of her songs, crediting the LGBTQ community with making her a success.

Indivisible Aurora, who brought the state's second-largest city its first-ever Pride Parade, received a Community Leadership Award. The organization's LGBTQ director, Gwyn Ciesla, recalled her surprise when she learned the city where she'd lived for 11 years hosted no formal Pride events. "I assumed, as an introvert, I missed it," Ciesla joked.

Despite some initial opposition, Ciesla called the inaugural parade a success. With 3,000 marchers, she said the group had to turn people away. The group is planning a two-day event with speakers and a 5k run for next year. In addition, Ciesla highlighted the need of suburban Pride events for those who can't make it to Chicago.

"It's important to see events like this in your hometown," she said, and left the stage to a standing ovation.

Currently starring as TV's first trans superhero, Dreamer, on the CW show Supergirl, actress Nicole Maines was once part of the first lawsuit to ensure proper trans bathroom usage in schools. Maines, who received an HRC Visibility Award at the gala, called being the first trans superhero on TV "very scary," as she's terrified of letting down young fans who might see themselves in her character.

Yet she was moved by the outpouring of love and support fans showed her as she assumed the role. Admitting to rage and despair when she read the recent New York Times article about the Trump administration's attempts to redefine her identity, she thanked her mother and her family for helping keep her grounded throughout the years. While she called the progress her community has made "fragile," Maines also sounded notes of defiance and hope.

"We cannot be erased by policy," she said to cheers. "We cannot be torn down by rhetoric. When faced with adversity, a person goes into fight or flight mode. The Trump administration assumed we would choose flight, and they were wrong. The LGBTQ community is one of fighters ... and we will be here long after he's gone."

More than $30,000 were raised for the organization's super PAC ( political action committee ).


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Center on Halsted's 'Human First' gala set for May 4 2019-04-24 - Center on Halsted's 'Human First' gala set for May 4 Center on Halsted is hosting its annual signature event, the Human First ...


Gay News

Pride events planned in Aurora, Buffalo Grove, Woodstock, Highwood, Joliet 2019-04-24 - Buffalo Grove Pride Parade happening June 2 The Buffalo Grove Pride Parade will take place Saturday, June 2, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. ...


Gay News

Nominations sought for 30 Under 30 Awards 2019-04-24 - Windy City Times is seeking to recognize 30 more outstanding LGBT individuals ( and allies ) for its annual 30 Under 30 Awards. ...


Gay News

Lambda Legal hosts annual Bon Foster event 2019-04-20 - Lambda Legal's tagline at its annual Bon Foster event on April 18 at Morgan Manufacturing was "We're Here." The annual celebration is ...


Gay News

Reports: Indivisible Aurora raising funds for 2019 Pride Parade 2019-04-17 - The Indivisible Aurora organization, which last year organizing that city's first Pride Parade—and which last week abruptly cancelled the 2019 parade, citing lack ...


Gay News

Safe-schools group holds annual 'Night of Noise' fundraiser 2019-04-17 - The Illinois Safe Schools Alliance held its third annual Night of Noise fundraiser—titled "Onward and Upward"—on April 14 at the Haymarket Pub and ...


Gay News

International LGBTQ refugee organization holds local fundraiser 2019-04-16 - On April 11, the international LGBTQ organization Rainbow Railroad launched a fundraising campaign at a benefit party held at the home of Phil ...


Gay News

Chicago House brunch and fashion show May 5 2019-04-16 - Chicago House's Annual Spring Brunch and Fashion Show will take place Sunday, May 5, in the Winter Garden at the Harold Washington Library, ...


Gay News

Bon Foster gala April 18 2019-04-15 - The Bon Foster gala—Lambda Legal's annual civil-rights celebration—will take place Thursday, April 18, 6-10 p.m., at Morgan Manufacturing, 401 N. Morgan St. There ...


Gay News

STONEWALL AT 50 Fact sheet answers basic Stonewall questions 2019-04-15 - NEW YORK, NY — Monday, April 15, 2019 — The NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project, Making Gay History, the New York Public Library, ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.