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SIDEBAR ALMA hosts reception for Latinx Hall of Fame inductees
by Vern Hester
2016-11-14

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On Nov. 10, the Association of Latino/as Motivating Action ( ALMA ) held a reception for this year's Latinx inductees of The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame. The informal event took place at Angel's Restaurant, 230 S. Ashland Ave., and focused on the need to keep moving forward after the results of the Nov. 8 presidential election. The event also highlighted the importance and need for community and education.

Honorees in attendance from the induction ceremony that took place the previous evening included Roman Buenrostro, Norma Seledon, David Cerda and members of Amigas Latinas. Recipient Maritxa Vidal was not present for the ALMA reception.

Guests were treated to an open bar and a Mexican buffet, with ALMA Board President Julio Rodriguez opening the reception. Speaking at length on the contributions of the inductees to not only the Latinx community but the LGBTQ community as a whole, Rodriguez spotlighted each recipient.

Buenrostro spoke about the need to create family, whether it be biological or community-based. Cerda spoke about his past experiences in theater, including being told constantly, "You'll never get cast." He said his response was to write and produce his own plays, with the exposure allowing him to create his own niche.

Former members of the now-defunct Amigas Latinas group shared stories about creating their own space because there was a need for a Latina organization for queer and lesbian women that was not being served. Activist/educator Seledon said she had a hard time believing that she had been inducted into either institution.

The night had the shadow of Donald Trump's victory as the newly elected president of the United States hanging over it. Many of the younger members at the event were clearly disturbed by the president-elect's promise to dismantle President Obama's attempts at immigration reform. The older members vowed to continue fighting at all costs.


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