Biggest Holiday Boutique in our history!

DT Boutique

Nov 13 to Dec 23 ● 9AM - 5PM
Opening reception Nov 12

During the course of the year, we set aside special, unique items donated to Diversity Thrift. If you shop at Diversity, you well know that we are not your usual thrift store. Just ask the dealers who visit us on a regular basis.

This year’s boutique is the largest in the event’s seven-year history. Hundreds of items. As soon as one treasure will be purchased, we will have two to replace it! Our elves…our staff and volunteers are working every day polishing, refurbishing and pricing the hundreds of special finds that will soon fill our gallery and a portion of the thrift store.

Opening reception is Friday, November 12th from 6:00 till 8:00 P.M. Please use the gallery entrance.

Thanksgiving at Diversity Richmond

UGRC Thanksgiving Luncheon

Black Pride RVA, UGRC, Minority Vets, and Diversity Richmond invite you to join us for a free delicious hot Thanksgiving Day meal on Thursday, Nov., 25th 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. in the Diversity Richmond event hall, 1407 Sherwood Ave., RVA 23220.

Dine in or pick up and take home.

Everyone is welcome. COVID-19 CDC guidelines will be strictly adhered to. Masks will be required when you are not eating or drinking. If you have questions, please contact us at

Diversity Richmond Granting $80,000 in Support of Local Efforts

Largest grant allocations in our 21-year history

Since 1999, Diversity Richmond has provided financial support to countless numbers of LGBTQ and LGBTQ-friendly organizations. We have distributed over $1.1 Million, this not including our clothing, food, utility, medical and housing assistance to those in need.

Due to community support, we are pleased to offer more funding this year than ever before. This grant cycle offers not only non-profits, but individuals the opportunity for funding. The information included in this newsletter addresses the criteria and application process.

If you, as an individual, have an idea for a project that will address social injustice and benefit the LGBTQ community, we encourage you to apply. Please note that some of the individual applications require a partnership with a nonprofit, but not all.

Our local community is filled with organizations and individuals that are working every day to bring about a society where all are treated fairly and granted opportunities to excel and lead. Diversity Richmond is excited to be a part of that community.

None of our good work would be possible if not for the support of our volunteers and donors. Thank you for joining our efforts to bring about good, positive changes.

Bill Harrison
President and Executive Director

Deadline for applications is
Monday, November 1, 2021
by 11:59 P.M.

View Grant Outline     View Grant Outline (Spanish)


If you have questions, please email Program Director, Aurora Higgs, at .

The board, staff and volunteers of Diversity Richmond gratefully acknowledges the support of our wonderful community. We could never do what we do without you.

To support Diversity Richmond, donate by credit card here or mail checks to Diversity Richmond, 1407 Sherwood Avenue, Richmond, VA 23220.


Scary Oke Oct29 2021

$500 Costume Grand Prize
and five $100 Runner-ups

$500 Karaoke Grand Prize
and five $100 Runner-ups

Everyone who sings gets entered in the karaoke cash raffle. Singing starts at 7:30 sharp!
Plus all winners receive a gift from Mongrel

FREE Admission
Age 18+ welcomed
I.D. required for alcohol

Cash bar serving up beer, wine, and cocktails
$7 Alcohol $2 Soft Drinks/Water

Rain Or Shine!

COVID Safety Measures

The health and safety of our guests, staff, and volunteers remains our top priority. While we continue to follow local, state, and federal health guidelines, if our Scary-Oke party needs to be held indoors due to unfavorable weather conditions, the following additional COVID safety measures will be used for
this event.

  • A photo ID and proof of full vaccination against Covid-19 OR a negative COVID test taken no more than 72 hours before the event must be presented before entering the event hall.
  • Masks must be worn in the event hall when not eating or drinking. A mask will be provided for you if you do not have one.
  • Anyone who has tested positive for Covid-19 in the last 2 weeks or has been in contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19, or feels unwell, is asked to stay home. Contact regarding your options.

Dress up sexy, funny, politically (in)correct, come-as-you-might-have-been, or just as you are.

Please Share Our facebook event page!
Sign Up Here To Volunteer!

Scary-Oke Thank You Sponsors

Lewis Insurance

Treehouse Realty VA



Jack Daniels

Titos vodka

Cupcake Vineyards

Scary Emcee Natasha

Emcee Natasha Carrington

This event helps fund the programs of Diversity Richmond

Diversity Richmond has invested more than $1,000,000 since 1999 in local LGBTQ+ and LGBTQ-friendly nonprofits. We collaborate with groups with similar aspirations to educate, advocate and support acceptance.

Volunteer Opportunities


AARP is the nation's largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people to choose how they live as they age. AARP Virginia volunteers work to strengthen their communities and advocate for what matters most to families - health security, financial stability, and personal fulfillment.

Community Ambassadors
AARP is known for our strong tradition of community involvement, which continues today. Community Ambassadors work collaboratively as a volunteer team with AARP members and chapters, the public, and local organizations to share information and resources on a variety of programs and activities. Volunteering as a Community Ambassador is a perfect way to make a difference in your community!

At AARP, advocacy is key to our mission of leading positive social change. AARP advocacy volunteers partner with staff on both the state and federal levels to influence important legislative issues that impact health, economic security, and protection from consumer and investment fraud. Training is available.

Speakers Bureau
Speakers Bureau volunteers educate and inform the public about key issues, increase and promote AARP’s visibility in the community, and speak on behalf of the association. Volunteers present workshops on a variety of topics such as caregiving, brain health, downsizing and decluttering, or fraud prevention.

AARP Virtual VolunteeringVirtual Volunteering
E-advocacy and the AARP Virginia website are two ways to remain informed and support the work of AARP from the comfort of your own home!

Sign up to be an E-advocate.


Story Corp OutLoudAARP + StoryCorps OutLoud Partnership
​AARP’s unwavering commitment to the LGBTQ audience reflects our core belief in the dignity, worth, a​nd​ potential of every individual. Our commitment can be measured by what we say—and what we do. In o​ur policy work at the community, state, and national levels, we are proud to stand with LGBTQ members, non-members, allies, and partner organizations.

In 2021, AARP and StoryCorps entered their third year of working together to amplify the voices and experiences of older LGBTQ adults.


AARP Josephs storyJoseph's Story
​Joseph Patton joined the US Navy in 1956 and was given an undesirable discharge because of the ass​umption that he was gay. Click to hear his story.


“Face the Rainbow” and “Soft Bondage”

Iridian Gallery logo

Former Gallery committee chair and VCU professor Chris Norris presents “Face the Rainbow,” an exhibition of vibrant, illustrative paintings. This body of work was created in the pandemic with a focus on hope in the midst of turbulence. Come find joy in this work that celebrates the LGBTQ community.

In our rear galleries, we present a solo show by Max Adrian, a recent MFA graduate from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art. “Soft Bondage” features brilliant textile craftsmanship in a series of experimental quilts and soft sculptures. The work encourages sincere curiosity about new methods of locating pleasure, expressing ourselves, and relating to one another.

Gallery hours Mon - Sun 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Follow Iridian on facebook and Instagram

Diversity Program Director Serves on Governor’s LGBTQ Advisory Board

aurora higgs swearingin

At the beginning of September, the Commonwealth convened all of the new members of it’s five advisory boards: Virginia African American Advisory Board, Virginia Asian Advisory Board, Virginia Council on Women, Virginia Latino Advisory Board, and the inaugural Virginia LGBTQIA+ Advisory Board. We were there for board orientation and to get a chance to meet one another, as cross-board board collaboration is fairly common.

As I looked around, I was both surprised and delighted that I did not know more people in the room. After all, this was for the entire Commonwealth of Virginia. That said, I was actually excited to meet more change-makers from areas outside of the Richmond metropolitan region. Some board members were community organizers or leaders of small grassroots organizations and some held elite positions in local universities and corporations. Together, we embarked on a journey to discover our new civil duties as appointed government officials.

Truly, it was surreal to walk into the state capitol and immediately become sworn-in. Just like that: I walked in as a constituent, and walked out feeling the weight of responsibility to my new constituents. Many of us in the room were nervously excited about our new roles, as many of us never expected to be honored in such a way. There are no words to describe the collective feeling of pride and duty that was palpable in that orientation.

The next day, I showed up at the capitol again. This time, it was for the first official convening of the LGBTQIA+ Advisory board. The duty of the board is to: 1. Advise the Governor regarding the development of economic, professional, cultural, educational, and governmental links between the Commonwealth and the LGBTQ+ community in Virginia. 2. Undertake studies, sponsor symposiums, conduct research, and prepare factual reports in order to gather information to formulate and present recommendations to the Governor relating to issues of concern and importance to the LGBTQ+ community in the Commonwealth. 3. Advise the Governor as needed regarding any statutory, regulatory, or other issues of importance to the LGBTQ+ community in the Commonwealth. 4. Apply for, accept, and expend gifts, grants, or donations from public, quasi-public, or private sources, including any matching funds as may be designated in an appropriation act, to enable it to better carry out its objectives. 5. Submit an annual report to the Governor and the General Assembly for publication as a report document as provided in the procedures of the Division of Legislative Automated Systems for the processing of legislative documents and reports.

Thanks to the Board orientation, I felt more confident about my roles and contributed value on the board. So when I walked into the room, I was READY to go! Naturally, there was not much more on the agenda than general housekeeping, seminars on best/ethical practices, and resources available to us. However, I walked out of the capitol that day knowing that I was gifted a rare opportunity to impact change at an institutional level, and there are mechanisms and processes in place that ensure the board has agency and the ear of the governor. I never thought I would get this opportunity on the heels of my 31st birthday. I am truly humbled by this opportunity, and will NOT let it be in vain.

Aurora Higgs
Program Director

Hispanicize #UnidosTogether


Fri, October 15, 2021
12:00 PM – 4:00 PM EDT

​​​​Hispanicize #UnidosTogether Virtual Summit celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month b​y gathering Hispanic/Latino influencers, content creators, entrepreneurs and media and entertainment innovators to connect on topics such as family, health, business and community. AARP is capitalizing on this event to launch the results of a custom research study between AARP, NGL and Think Now focused on "Salud, Dinero y Amor in the time of COVID." Yvette Peña will appear on a ​​panel alongside Think Now's Mario Xavier Carrasco and influencer Yarel Ramos to highlight relevant findings and discuss the key issues affecting the Hispanic/Latino audience.​​

Register here

Emerging LGBTQ+ Leaders Program

The Diversity Richmond Emerging Leaders program is a group for age 21+ that supports our organizational mission through community outreach, programs, and fundraising.

Emerging Leaders will meet with Diversity Richmond board and staff to learn more about our organization and strengthen their knowledge of the LGBTQ+ community throughout Richmond. Participants will act as ambassadors for Diversity Richmond and help us connect with individuals throughout Virginia. Email for more information.

Talks Under the Umbrella


We are pleased to announce a new virtual opportunity for community members age 18+. Diversity Richmond will host a LGBTQ+ hangout group called Talks Under the Umbrella. This will be a new space to build community and discuss different topics. If you have an interest in attending these meetings or would like to be considered as a possible team member to help facilitate meetings, please email us.

This program will collaborate with the efforts of the Bi+ Discussion Group hosted by Metropolitan Community Church. Please visit MCC for meeting information.

Viva RVA! and the celebration of Richmond’s LGBTQ+ & Latinx community

Viva RVA! painting

Each year, Americans observe Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures, and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. In 2019, Diversity Richmond’s board member Fernando Rodríguez created Viva RVA!, our signature outreach program serving Richmond’s LGBTQ+ & Latinx community.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, and under Raul Cantu's leadership, it facilitated several food drives and COVID-19 testing events in coordination with the Virginia Department of Health (VDA). Recently we made the painful decision to postpone the Viva RVA! Hispanic Music Festival, scheduled for October 2nd, until next year due to the surge in cases of COVID-19 in Virginia and the Richmond Region

To kick off Hispanic Heritage Month, we want to announce a partnership with local artist Marshall Higgins, a visual artist based in Richmond and who specializes in large-scale commercial mural installations. The soon-to-be father collaborated with fellow artist Ben Batemann to paint the Viva RVA! logo outside the main Event Hall.

“I am lucky to have been around and been influenced by people in the LGBTQ community who’ve shown me nothing but love,” said Higgins.

VivaRVA 2021 two guys

We are also excited to announce a partnership with the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Engagement (OIRE) and the Office of Minority Business Development (OMBD) to host the inaugural class of the Latino Entrepreneurship Academy. 20 Hispanic participants will learn about entrepreneurship from concept to execution during the 15-week course. Several sessions will be led by LGBTQ Latino business owners and financial experts and the Academy that will begin in October.

“We are thrilled and thankful to receive the support from Diversity Richmond in the launch of this new program for the Latino Entrepreneurs in the City of Richmond. We hope this is the beginning of a lasting partnership that will benefit of the Latino community in RVA,” said OIRE Manager Karla Almendarez-Ramos.

“The City’s Office of Minority Business Development (OMBD) is dedicated to making diversity and inclusion a business priority, and therefore is working with the Latino Entrepreneurship Academy to accomplish this mission. We give thanks to our partners, the Office of Immigrant & Refugee Engagement and Diversity Richmond. We anticipate great results from our collective efforts.” Stated OMBD Director, Pat Foster.

Please stop by and view the Viva RVA! mural and follow Viva RVA! on Facebook for more updates regarding the Latino Entrepreneurship Academy.

VivaRVA 2021 DR wall