Black History Month Honorees

Pictured: Award recipients Officer Ellio? Anderson, The Reverend Lace?e Cross, Jelani Drew, Rebecca Keel, Dr. Lauranett Lee, The Honorable Cynthia Newbille, Schiavone McGee and “Wiggles.”

By Rodney Lofton

As I write this tribute to Diversity Richmond’s recognition of the Black LGBTQ History Month, I am reminded of the Virginia Slims tagline, “You’ve come along way, baby.”

On February 2, in partnership with the Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia, Diversity Richmond celebrated the kick-off of the 2nd Annual Black and Bold Awards, a program to celebrate the rich and vibrant contributions of Black LGBTQ community members. Nine honorees, ranging in ages, genders and identities were celebrated in the fields of activism, education, the arts, religion and social justice.

With a packed room of family, friends and supporters, the eight honorees, including two LGBTQ allies, were awarded one- of- a-kind medals, designed by Virginia Commonwealth University student, Angelique Scott. This year’s list of honorees included:

  • Officer Elliott Anderson, LGBTQ Liaison, Chesterfield County Police Department
  • The Reverend Lacette Cross
  • Jelani Drew
  • Rebecca Keel
  • Schiavone McGee
  • The Honorable Cynthia Newbille
  • “Wiggles”

In addition to the awards ceremony and recognition for their work in the community, the honorees and guests were treated to the unveiling of their individual portraits photographed by Harron Fells, with art direction by Fernando Rodriguez of ONE MAN DESIGN.

Diversity Richmond would like to thank our community partners: Dominion Energy, The Monument Group, Suzanne Makarem and Alan Hutson, Jr., for their sponsorship for this incredibly beautiful and moving event.