Greater Palm Springs Pride has opened the nomination process for the 2013 Pride Honors. Each year a slate of honorees are selected for their many contributions to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Palm Springs Pride seeks community support to find those most deserving of recognition.
Palm Springs Pride seeks individuals, groups, organizations or businesses that have positively contributed to the LGBT community in numerous ways. Contributions will be recognized in the following categories: Organization of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Community Service, Community Grand Marshal, Celebrity Grand Marshal, Special Guest and Lifetime Achievement.
In 2012, Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented to the LGBT rights pioneer and founder of the Metropolitan Community Church, Troy Perry, and Viola Johnson, recognizing her four decades of activism and leadership in the leather community. Masen Davis was recognized as 2012 Spirit of Stonewall Special Guest for his activism and service on behalf of the transgender community; and a life-long feminist and activist, Ruth Debra, along with trio Gary Moline, Dean McDowell and the Desert Winds Freedom Band were recognized with Spirit of Stonewall Community Service Awards. AIDS Walk Palm Springs was the 2012 Advocate of the Year and Arlene Rosenthal, Doug Hairgrove and Woody Wood were honored as Volunteers of the Year.
Retired Staff Sergeant Eric Alva, the first American soldier wounded in the Iraq War, was honored as the 2012 Grand Marshal. Alva is recognized as a LGBT civil rights activist and a national spokesman for the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Community Grand Marshals included an original member of Dykes on Bikes, director, producer and historian Glenne McElhinney along with one of the first out gay reporters in the country Hank Plante. Celebrity Grand Marshals were television, radio and stage performer Joey English and fashion designer Michael Costello.