All in favor of equality? Well, if you're not in the ayes by now, you can sashay that nay-saying ass far away from us. The Human Rights Campaign (or the HRC) is one of the front runners on the side of aye, and each year they blow our minds (and our hearts) with the amount of the good that they give back to the LGBT community--both locally and nationally. For those not in the know, the Human Rights Campaign is "America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all." Sound good? We agree. Each year, the Utah chapter of the HRC holds a gala in the interest of looking back on the year's successes (which we gave you a good look at in a story last month), as well as looking forward to the work left to be done. This year marks number 11 for the fundraising benefit (the theme is an apt "Stronger Together") and it's set to celebrate yet another banner year for human rights. "From marriage to healthcare to bullying, the progress toward protections for LGBT people is sweeping across America, and we must focus on how we can help those neighbors who still experience injustice," says HRC Utah. And to that, we give a gallant fist in the air and call to arms.
The HRC Gala is also a bonafide chance to raise funds for the cause and give recognition to those that strive to further it. The recipients of this year's HRC Equality Awards include the likes of some amazing folks: this year's Allies for Equality Award Recipients are Teri Polo (of the highly-acclaimed The Fosters) and Bradley Whitford (of the mad genius that is Transparent)! Brandie Balken and Clifford Rosky will each receive the HRC Equality Award, and there will be a speech by HRC President Chad Griffin, to boot--a fella with a touch for public speaking to rally the likes of anyone. A fundraising, private auction will precede a delish black-tie dinner; and, if last year's fete is any indication, entertainment by Niki Haris and DJ Young 1 will kick off the "lose your heels and loosen those ties" portion of the evening.
The event has grown to be one of the largest fundraisers for equality in the country, and the whole operation is possible because of donations from folks like you. The 2015 Gala takes place this Saturday, June 27th, at the Grand America, and it's set to be a veritable who's who of the Salt Lake and LGBT communities--nearly 1,000 of "Utah's most influential citizens will gather to engage in the important work" of the organization, and also set plans for the rolling-up of sleeves in the coming years. The evening kicks off with a VIP Champagne Reception and commences with an into-the-wee-hours after party. Join Gala Co-Chairs Dustin Schrecengost and Juanita Giles, along with the HRC Utah Dinner Committee, for the 2015 HRC Utah Gala, and let's kick this year of doing-right off right.