Saturday, March 26, 2011

National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association's 'Headlines & Headliners'

Ashley Love, journalist Ann Curry

(L-R) Patrick Abner, Ashley, Thomas Roberts (event host, MNBC news anchor)

Yesterday evening was "Headlines & Headliners", the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association’s 16th Annual Benefit. NLGJA is dedicated to ensuring fair and accurate coverage of LGBT issues, protecting LGBT media professionals in the work place and fostering their professional development.

It was a really lively and lovely event, held at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, a luxury furniture store in in Manhattan. The event was hosted by Thomas Roberts, an openly gay news anchor on MNBC. News media greats such as Ann Curry and Sam Champion attended, as well as Chris Wragge, Jane Velez-Mitchell, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Matthew Taylor and Natalie Morales.

Country music star Chely Wright and her girlfriend came out to support the cause. Wright’s upcoming documentary, ‘Wish Me Away’, had a special screening the same night, at a different venue. Miss New York 2010, Claire Buffie, was there to support her friend Thomas Roberts. She is such a dedicated straight ally to the LGBT community, and I enjoy seeing her at numerous events for the community.

As a media professional, who also happens to be part of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender and intersex coalition, it was really inspiring to me to be in the presence of so many people I look up to, such as Ann Curry who is such a smart woman and a longtime advocate, and Thomas Roberts who is brave enough to be out, when many in the industry are still closeted professionally. The event was bustling with so many folks who all believed in harnessing the media to enroll equality, understanding, acceptance and positive images for the community.

Mitchel Gold received a certificate from Christine Quinn, speaker of NY City Council, honoring his work. Michel Gold is not just a furniture entrepreneur; he is a civil rights advocate. His new book, Crisis: 40 Stories Revealing the Personal, Social and Religious Pain and Trauma of Growing Up Gay in America, is out now.

Times are so much better than they used to be as far as the media being more respectful and accurate concerning transsexual, transgender and intersex (TTI) representations and issues, and LGBT ones as well. But there is still so much work to be done, especially for the TTI communities. There is still a lot of mis-gendering, sensationalizing and dehumanizing of transsexual women in the media every day. With groups like NLGJA and openly LGBT media professionals, we can help inspire better media coverage.

To learn more about NLGJA, and to get more involved, visit:

w/ country star/LGBT advocate Chely Wright (L-R) Fox news anchor Kimberly Guilfoyle, Ashley Love, Fox news anchor Jamie Colby w/ Jane Velez-Mitchell w/ NLGJA Executive Director Michael Tune Miss New York 2010 Claire Buffie Blogger Andy Towle w/ New York Time's Alan Flippen Micthel Gold's company being acknowledged from the city via Christine Quinn LAGLC's Jim Key (far left), Latina Magazine's Javier Morgado (2nd from left), journalist Derrick Shore (far right) (L-R) Ashley, Emma Margoline, guest, Lana Schupbach, guest w/ NCLR's Shannon Minter w/ Fred Karger

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