Achieving LGBT Equality Through Litigation, Legislation, Policy, and Public Education

NCLR Anniversary Celebration

Anniversary Party 2016 TwitterCelebrate the LGBT Party of the Year with Us!

Save the date—May 7, 2016—for NCLR’s Anniversary Celebration in San Francisco.

The Anniversary Celebration Dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. at the Marriott Marquis. The evening will feature NCLR’s Executive Director Kate Kendell and we will honor heroes and celebrate victories in the movement for LGBT equality. This year we will present the Courage Award to Ryland Whittington, a deaf transgender child who, along with his parents, have been making an incredible impact on our community. We will also honor Black Lives Matter co-founders, Alicia Garza, Patrisse Kahn-Cullors and Opal Tometi—with the Justice Award. This is a rare opportunity you don’t want to miss!

The Anniversary Celebration Party starts at 8:30 p.m. at City View at Metreon. Join us for drinks, dancing, food, and games. You won’t want to miss out on the LGBT party of the year!

Get your Dinner and Party tickets today!
Dinner ticket sales have closed.
Online Party tickets available until May 5th. Party ticket sales will resume on May 7th at 8:00 p.m. at the door at the City View at Metreon.

The Awards & Honorees

Justice Award: Black Lives Matter Co-Founders Alicia Garza, Patrisse Kahn-Cullors, and Opal Tometi
Garza, Kahn-Cullors, and Tometi co-created #BlackLivesMatter and the Black Lives Matter National Network as a call to action following the acquittal of George Zimmerman who brutally murdered 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The Network, which was catalyzed by organizers and activists in Ferguson, MO, spurred a broader movement and promulgated an international conversation about anti-Black racism, American democracy, and the experiences of Black people across the globe.

Black Lives Matter “is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise. It is an affirmation of Black folks’ contributions to this society, our humanity, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression,” Garza says.

Liberty Award: Tiara Yates and Family
Tiara and Sheena Yates were high school sweethearts. They became civil union partners in New Jersey in 2011 and married three years later. They conceived their youngest child, who is now nearly 3, using a known sperm donor through at-home insemination. Since they were civil union partners when their son was born, they are both listed on his birth certificate.

But they had to fight to both be recognized as legal parents. When their son was about 1, the sperm donor sued them for custody and visitation. The trial court wrongly held that he rather than Tiara was the child’s second legal parent even though he had barely had any contact with the child.

New Jersey generally recognizes a man as a sperm donor only if the sperm is first provided to a doctor. But for many low-income families, like the Yateses, going to a doctor or clinic for inseminations can be too expensive. In March 2016, with the help of NCLR and Lowenstein Sandler, LLP, Tiara and Sheena succeeded in having the sperm donor’s lawsuit dismissed and his paternity order vacated.

Courage Award: Ryland Whittington and Family
NCLR worked closely with Ryland, an 8-year-old transgender boy who won the hearts of millions when his supportive parents, Jeff and Hillary, shared his inspirational journey through a YouTube video that went viral.
When Ryland was about a year old, Jeff and Hillary learned that Ryland had profound hearing loss, and made the decision to obtain cochlear implants for him. As their child grew, they provided him with unconditional love and support, ensuring that Ryland knew he was just like any other child and his hearing did not make him any different. When Ryland began to talk, some of his first words were “I am a boy,” prompting Jeff and Hillary to research the issue. But, like many parents, they realized unconditional love is what their child needed most, providing him with the support he needed to become a happy, healthy, and well-adjusted boy.

The family—who NCLR helped through Ryland’s transition—has since shared their courageous story with millions, including in a new book, in hopes that their story will help other transgender children and their families.

Questions: Contact Corporate Relations & Events Manager Dani Siragusa at or 415.365.1309.

See you May 7, 2016!

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