DC Leadership Awards 2007

DC Leadership Awards an empowering evening

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Honoree Patrik-Ian Polk, executive producer of Noah's Arc, accepts the Leadership Award. (Photo by Rudy K Photography)

On Saturday, May 5, friends of the Task Force gathered at the Omni Shoreham in Washington, DC for our annual DC Leadership Awards. From the VIP reception to the silent auction to the closing moments, it was an empowering evening. Mary Kay Henry, International Executive Vice President of Service Employees International Unioni (SEIU), accepted the Leadership Award for Service Employees International Union (SEIU), emphasized the link between all equality struggles as exemplified by SEIU’s inclusion of our families in their fight for the dignity of all workers. Patrik-Ian Polk, executive producer of Noah’s Arc, reminded us that the personal is political; the show exists because he wanted to see himself and his friends — black, gay men — on television. Karen Williams, the evening’s emcee, received a warm “welcome back” from our audience — along with gales of laughter.

After two successful years as a full sit-down dinner, the DC Leadership Awards is clearly an event that will continue to grow and mature. More importantly, the diversity among our guests ensures that the event represents our nation’s capital.

Special thanks go to the evening’s financial sponsors. Platinum sponsors included Kaiser Permanente, the National Education Association, honoree Service Employees International Union, and Andrew Tobias & Charles Nolan. Gold sponsors were Darrin L. Glymph, Esq. and board member and steering committee member Lee Rubin and his partner Jim Walker. Our many silver sponsors included significant support from organized labor, including the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO, UNITE HERE! and the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW). Other silver sponsors were the Democratic National Committee, Ruth Eisenberg/Harmon Curran, Spielberg & Eisenberg, Gill Action, Brian A. Johnson, Jeffrey Z. Slavin & Douglas Miller, board member Andrew Ogilvie and his partner Cary Davidson, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., and board co-chair Mark Sexton and his partner Kirk Wallace. Bronze sponsors for the event included the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME); board member and steering committee member Jerry N. Clark; Scott Davenport & Tim Fisher, William Eskridge, Esq.; John Gill & his partner event co-chair Tony Varona; Jane A. Hoffman; our friends at the Human Rights Campaign; David L. Martin; Babak Movahedi and his firm, Red Box Settlements, LLC; and Scott + Yandura Consulting.

The Task Force is especially grateful to the members of the event steering committee. Co-chairs Sheila Alexander-Reid, Helen Gonzales, board member Hans Johnson and Tony Varona led a committee whose members — Hugh Broadus, Jerry Clark, Ellie Collinson, Darrin Glymph, Lee Rubin and Michael Singer — worked hard for nearly a year to create another memorable DC Leadership Awards.