Task Force announces Miami Recognition Dinner honorees

The Miami Recognition Dinner is a chance to recognize and celebrate those who are working tirelessly to create positive change for LGBT people, our families and our world. It also provides a vital source of funding for local organizations in Florida, as well as national LGBT rights efforts. 

For the 16th Annual Miami Recognition Dinner, which will be held at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach on Saturday, Oct. 6, 

the honorees are Elizabeth F. Schwartz and Matt Foreman. The event will be hosted by actor/director LeVar Burton.

The 2012 Eddy McIntyre Community Service Award will be presented to Elizabeth F. Schwartz. Elizabeth is an attorney in her 15th year of law practice and has devoted much of her life to serving the LGBT community. Her practice emphasizes representation of LGBT people in family formation and dissolution matters, and she lectures locally and nationally about the importance of same-sex couples protecting their loved ones through estate planning and contracts.

She is chair of the Gay and Lesbian Lawyers Association of South Florida and a member of the National Family Law Advisory Council of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. She has served as pro bono counsel in several cases seeking to overturn Florida’s 1977 ban forbidding gays and lesbians from adopting children.

Elizabeth is a founding member of the Aqua Foundation for Women and has donated her time, money and expertise to many organizations serving the LGBT community on a local, state and national level. Her contributions have been recognized by many organizations, including Equality Florida, SAVE, SunServe and the Miami-Dade Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

The 2012 National Leadership Award will be presented to Matt Foreman, who has spent much of his adult life working to create change for our community — as a volunteer, as executive director of a local, statewide and national LGBT organization and, most recently, as a director at one of the most LGBT-supportive foundations in the nation.

Matt co-founded Heritage of Pride, organizers of New York City’s LGBT Pride events, and built the New York City Gay & Lesbian Anti-Violence Project into the nation’s leading LGBT crime victim assistance agency. When he was executive director at the Empire State Pride Agenda from 1997 to 2003, New York enacted a gay-inclusive civil rights law and a hate crimes law, repealed its consensual sodomy law and appropriated $12 million specifically for LGBT (non-HIV) health and human services. Matt headed up the Task Force from 2003 to 2008, where he was a tireless and outspoken advocate for fairness and justice. He currently serves as director of Gay and Immigrant Rights Programs at the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund in San Francisco.

The Miami Recognition Dinner features cocktail receptions, a sit-down dinner, a silent auction, an awards ceremony and dancing. Get full details here.