LOS ANGELES – Equality California, the statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organization, announced Wednesday that it will present its first-ever statewide “Golden State Equality Awards” virtual celebration on Sunday, September 13.
The event, which will celebrate the LGBTQ+ community achievements, will be hosted by “Pose” star, actress and advocate, Angelica Ross and honor Netflix’s groundbreaking documentary, “Disclosure.” Equality California will also honor husbands Pete & Chasten Buttigieg with the Equality Trailblazer Award, following Pete’s groundbreaking run for president.
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, (D-CA) will honor the late U.S. Representative John Lewis,(D-GA) a civil rights icon and longtime ally to the LGBTQ+ community, with a moving tribute to his life and career. Those tuning in to the broadcast will be treated to musical performances from the legendary Melissa Etheridge, Betty Who, Alex Newell, Shea Diamond and Robin S, as well.
“2020 has challenged the LGBTQ+ community in ways we could never have imagined, but challenging times create heroes, and we cannot wait to come together virtually and celebrate some of this year’s heroes,” said Equality California Executive Director Rick Chavez Zbur.
“The Equality Awards are a critical opportunity for members of our community to honor the leaders and organizations whose selfless work helps to advance LGBTQ+ civil rights and social justice. Over the past year, Pete and Chasten Buttigieg have transformed American politics forever. Netflix’s groundbreaking documentary ‘Disclosure’ shed much-needed light on the power of transgender representation in film and television. And we lost a true giant — and an unwavering ally — in Congressman John Lewis, whose life and legacy we are proud to honor with a tribute from Speaker Pelosi.”
The “Golden State Equality Awards” will start with regional pre-show cocktail hours celebrating the LGBTQ+ and allied communities in Sacramento, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles and Palm Springs.
During this time, the organization will recognize additional honorees including California State Treasurer Fiona Ma, California Legislative Black Caucus Chair Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber, former California Legislative LGBTQ Caucus Chair Assemblymember Evan Low, former California Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez, Chula Vista Mayor Mary Casillas Salas, Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California CEO & President Jodi Hicks, TransLatin@ Coalition President Bamby Salcedo, Founding Director of the Williams Institute at UCLA Law Brad Sears, trans advocate Evan Minton, trans advocate Connor Maddocks and frontline healthcare and grocery store workers from Desert Regional Medical Center, Eisenhower Health and UFCW Local 1167.
Additional honorees and special guests will be announced in the coming weeks. The event will stream live at 6pm PT on a private website for ticketed attendees and sponsors. To purchase tickets to the Golden State Equality Awards, visit eqca.org/equality-awards.