EMMY-Winners Rosie O’Donnell and David Lee to be Honored at National Gay and Lesbian Task Force 14th Annual Leadership Awards

September 04, 2003

September 28th Event in Los Angeles to Honor Calpernia Addams, David Lee, Rosie & Kelli O'Donnell, and Antonio Villaraigosa

LOS ANGELES, September 4, 2003 - As part of its 30th anniversary year, on September 28 the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force will present the 14th Annual Leadership Awards in Los Angeles, honoring Calpernia Addams, David Lee, Kelli and Rosie O'Donnell and Antonio Villaraigosa. Established in 1989 to pay tribute to community leaders and allies who help pave the way for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people by advancing the cause of freedom, justice and equality, the evening will include an awards ceremony, a silent auction, and cocktail and dessert receptions.

"We are proud to be honoring such stellar individuals," said Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman. "Their commitment to promoting LGBT equality and educating the public about issues of vital importance to our community is to be commended, and we can't thank them enough."

Rosie O'Donnell and her partner Kelli O'Donnell, who will be on hand to accept the 2003 Leadership Award, are a devoted couple dedicated to fighting for family adoption and same-sex parenting issues. They are the proud parents of four children.

L.A. City Councilmember Antonio Villaraigosa is a tireless ally of the LGBT community who, as a legislator and former Speaker of the California State Assembly, authored laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Joining the list of honorees is Calpernia Addams, a leading advocate in the transgender community whose real-life story inspired the making of Showtime's Soldier's Girl, which recounts her loving relationship with murdered soldier Barry Winchell.

And, nine-time Emmy winner David Lee, one of the first openly gay writer/producers in television, is also being honored. Lee is co-creator and executive producer of the critically-acclaimed Frasier, and was instrumental in challenging his employer, Paramount, for their decision to launch Dr. Laura's television show.

All honorees are expected to be on hand to accept their awards.

Past Leadership Award honorees include: civil rights activist Coretta Scott King; Senator Ted Kennedy; film producer Bruce Cohen; comedian Margaret Cho; actors Mathew St. Patrick, Alec Mapa and Wilson Cruz; The Advocate's first female editor-in-chief Judy Wieder; adoptive parents Roger Croteau and Steven Lofton; and The Indigo Girls.

What: The Task Force 14th Annual Leadership Awards
When: Sunday, September 28, 2003, 5 - 8pm
Where: The Village, 1125 North McCadden Place, Los Angeles, CA 90038

For more biographical information/photos of the honorees, or to purchase tickets, please visit the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Web site event page or contact Special Events Manager Clayton Yeung at 323-857-8742.


The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.