COLAGE celebrates its 20th Anniversary as the only national, youth-driven network of people with LGBTQ parents. Wilson Cruz will emcee COLAGE’s 20th Anniversary Party on Sunday, October 10th from 2:00 – 5:00pm at the Mansion on O Street in Washington, D.C. Cruz played the groundbreaking role of an openly gay teen on the hit show “My So Called Life” in the 90s and has continued to serve as a fierce role-model and advocate for the LGBTQ community. He played Angel in the Broadway production of Rent, starred in the television series Noah’s Arc, and had roles on Party of Five, Ally McBeal, and many others. He has won a GLAAD Media Award for his positive portrayals of gay characters on television and his trailblazing work on behalf of the LGBTQ community, particularly LGBTQ youth of color.
The party will feature COLAGE’s new short film Family Time, chronicling 20 historic years of the LGBTQ family movement from 1990 until today, and the release of the new book Let’s Get This Straight: The Ultimate Handbook for People with an LGBTQ Parent. The author of the book, Tina Fakhrid-Deen will be honored, and attendees will have a chance to receive a signed copy. The film will make its online debut later this year.
“20 years ago we didn’t see our families represented in the media. There was no Rosie, Modern Family, or GLEE. There were no facebook or twitter groups for people with LGBTQ parents. And there certainly wasn’t a guidebook for people with LGBTQ parents,” said Beth Teper, Executive Director. “By coming out about our families, we’ve come a long way in terms of visibility, but our families still experience isolation and challenges due to discrimination. By connecting with a community of our peers we often recognize our difference is our strength and are better able to advocate for our families, so that we may all enjoy the rights, recognition, and dignity all families deserve.”
Congressman Jared Polis, Congresswoman Linda Sanchez, and DC Councilmember Jim Graham are among the hosts of the event. The three of them are longtime allies and have made considerable contributions to the LGBTQ family movement. Most recently, Congressman Jared Polis signed a letter to President Obama asking the Administration not to appeal the recent ruling that the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy is unconstitutional.
At the party, COLAGE will honor Danielle Silber and her mom Susan Silber. Danielle leads the COLAGE New York City Chapter. At the age of 17, Danielle and her family sat down with Barbara Walters of ABC’s 20/20 for their first of many major nationally publicized interviews. Most recently, Danielle appeared on the official website for the major motion picture The Kids Are All Right. Susan Silber, Danielle’s mother, is a lawyer and leading legal advocate for LGBTQ families. She won a number of contested cases recognizing the rights of lesbian or gay non-biological co-parents and is an expert in LGBTQ parent custody and visitation rights.
Other honorees include Ryan LaLonde and Christopher Moody. Ryan led COLAGE Metro D.C. for ten years and served on the COLAGE Board of Directors. Ryan was the mastermind behind the turnout of LGBTQ families at the 2000 March on Washington – including the largest ever gathering of our families on the mall. Alongside Ryan, Chris is a dedicated volunteer and supporter of fifteen years. The couple recently adopted their son Farber and are outspoken advocates for domestic adoption and LGBT parenthood.
COLAGE’s 20th Anniversary Party will be on Sunday, October 10, 2010 from 2:00 -5:00pm at the Mansion on O Street, Washington, D.C. Tickets are $50 for adults and $20 for youth. There will be a silent auction, light fare, drinks and desert. Fore more information visit www.colage.org or call Mark Snyder, Communications Coordinator, at 415-861-5437, firstname.lastname@example.org.
COLAGE is a national movement of children, youth, and adults with one or more lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and/or queer (LGBTQ) parent/s. We build community and work toward social justice through youth empowerment, leadership development, education, and advocacy.