EQUALITY FLORIDA TALLAHASSEE GALA TO PRESENT “VOICE FOR EQUALITY” AWARD TO JESSICA LOWE-MINOR

April 12, 2012

Equality Florida Institute will honor Jessica Lowe-Minor with the Voice for Equality Award at the organization’s annual Gala on Tuesday, April 17 at 6:30 PM at the Historic Florida Capitol Museum in Tallahassee.
 
Celebrating its 15th year, Equality Florida Institute is the largest civil rights organization dedicated to securing full equality for Florida's LGBT community,
 
"Our honorees have been pioneers in finding new ways to give voice and visibility to the LGBT community," said Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida. "Jessica has been a steadfast supporter of equal rights for all and a leading voice in Tallahassee for women, LGBT rights and basic fairness in public policy.”
Jessica Lowe-Minor has been an advocate for the LGBT community for years in Tallahassee. She is one of the most respected leaders in Florida’s progressive community and, as a former legislative advocate for the National Organization for Women and the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, she has used her voice numerous times to call out Florida’s most anti-gay laws.

As the Executive Director of the League of Women Voters of Florida, Jessica has been on the front lines of the fight for fair districts, which could have a transformational effect on Equality Florida’s ongoing efforts for equitable changes to Florida law.

It is fitting for the Gala to take place at the Historic Florida Capitol Museum, which currently houses a Civil Rights exhibit.  Florida was the setting of important civil rights legal actions, and national leaders Thurgood Marshall and Martin Luther King, Jr., both played a role in Florida's struggle. Photographs on display from the 1950s and 1960s show civil rights demonstrators demanding an end to laws that provided for different treatment for minorities, especially African Americans.
 
“Today, the struggle for equality continues,” added Smith.  “Equality Florida is proud to play a pivotal role in securing equal rights for all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.”
 
Lawmakers and community leaders are expected to attend the Equality Florida Tallahassee Gala, which promises to be a spectacular event, drawing more than 300 attendees.  Nadine Smith, Equality Florida’s Executive Director, will present a State of the State Address, recounting the incredible strides made this past year throughout the state, as well as detailing how much work is yet to be done.
 
The Host Committee consists of community influencers including Jane Chabre & April Galbraith, Kristal & Kawachi Clemons, Steven Hall, Shani-Angela Hervey, Andy Janecek, Blake Little, Jessica Lowe-Minor & Rick Minor, barry Munroe & Darwin Gamble, Jeffrey Pope, Bob Rackleff, Karen Richardson, Lee Satterfield, Karen Stanford & Dana Farmer, John Sonntag, Cliff Thaell, Scott Van Deman & Jeremiah Fisher, Cindy Willis & Kris Thompson and Jeff Wright.
 
Sponsors for the evening are Carlton Fields, MPW, Northern Trust, Bennett L. Chesser, Jim VanRiper & Myles Robertson, BlueCross BlueShield of Florida, Tallahassee Pridefest, Watts Mechanical, Inc., Florida Education Association, Rainbow eBooks, Jimmers Micallef, Sean Stanley, Mary Wakeman, United Church in Tallahassee, David Poole & Doug Moore, John E. Sonntag and Karen Stanford & Dana Farmer.
 
The Gala takes place on Tuesday, April 17 from 6:30 to 8:30 PM at the Historic Florida Capitol Museum, 400 So. Monroe Street, Tallahassee. Suggested donation is $100.  Further information is available online at  www.eqfl.org/tallahasseegala or by calling (813) 870-3735.
 
Proceeds from the event benefit Equality Florida Institute, a tax exempt, 501c3 non-profit organization.
 
About Equality Florida
 
Equality Florida is the largest civil rights organization dedicated to securing full equality for LGBT community. Through lobbying, grassroots organizing, education, and coalition building, we are changing Florida so that no one suffers harassment or discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
 
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