2014 Equality Gala Awards

2014 Bob Page Equality Champion Award

The Bob Page Equality Champion Award - named for a visionary leader in North Carolina's LGBT movement - honors a legacy of advocacy for LGBT North Carolinians. 

Linda and Mac Stroupe
Greensboro's own Linda Stroupe is the Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) Regional Director for the South Atlantic Region, (NC, SC, KY, and TN). Linda is well-known for her decades-long LGBT and community activism, alongside her husband of over 40 years, Mac Stroupe, a PFLAG dad also well-known for his fight for equal rights and justice for North Carolina's LGBT community.

Both Linda and Mac became active in PFLAG after their son, Carter, came out at the age of 13. Following Carter's death in 2010, Linda and Mac continued their pro-equality efforts, advocating for equal rights and justice for all LGBT citizens and becoming dedicated activists for an array of LGBT issues, including the fight for marriage equality.

The Stroupe's tireless fight for the freedom to marry gained prominence during the campaign against Amendment One, when the couple could be consistently found leading rallies, panel discussions, voter education events, and fundraisers in an effort to defeat the discriminatory marriage ban. Of marriage equality, Linda once said, "Marriage is a unique event in our society in which we celebrate, and our laws affirm, the union of two people. It is the exact opposite of the lack of acceptance that many gay men and women like my son Carter have known." We're proud to say Linda and Mac were standing beside us once again at the Guilford County Register of Deeds office when their-long fight for marriage equality in North Carolina came to an end and the freedom to marry became the law of the land.

2014 Jamie Kirk Hahn Ally Award

The Jamie Kirk Hahn Ally Award is a lasting tribute to a hero of Equality taken too soon. This acknowledgement of Jamie's extraordinary pro-equality work, and named in her honor, is awarded to an North Carolina LGBT ally for the ages.

Kelly Spaulding
Kelly Spaulding, a native North Carolinian and local mover and shaker, earned a BA in English and Communications at Meredith College in Raleigh, NC.

Kelly became involved with the LBGT community when her best friend in high school came out to her and contracted HIV during the 80’s. Based on her experience, it became of great personal value to forge the straight and gay alliance that bonds many in the Triangle community. In addition to participating in a number of LBGT initiatives, she provides leadership on the board of the LGBT Center of Raleigh.

2014 Legislative Leadership Award

The annual Equality NC Foundation Legislative Leadership Award recognizes exemplar pro-equality leadership in the North Carolina General Assembly.

Rep. Susan Fisher
Rep. Susan Fisher is considered a long-time, trusted friend to the LGBT community, and with good reason: she not only voted against Amendment One, North Carolina's ban on the freedom to marry, but openly scolded anti-equality lawmakers who would seek to marginalize individuals who fight for equality.

The self-professed Progressive Democrat representing Buncombe County fully supports LGBT rights, believes sexual orientation and gender identity should be included in the state's anti-discrimination law and actively sponsored the inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in the K-12 anti-bullying legislation (School Violence Prevention Act) that passed the General Assembly in 2009. Most recently, this champion for Equality sponsored amendments to and led the charge for 2014 charter school legislation protecting gay and transgender kids.

2014 Organization of the Year Award

This prestigious award recognizes an extraordinary North Carolina organization doing groundbreaking work for LGBT citizens.

Time Out Youth
Time Out Youth is a place where you can experience a sense of belonging and community. Whether you are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, a straight ally – or just don’t want to be labeled, you will be welcomed here. Some of our youth are out, some are partially out, and some are not out at all. Time Out Youth offers a safe space for all and fully respects the journey of each individual. While at Time Out Youth, you are not expected to be anyone or anything except who you are.

Through the organization's tireless work, Time Out Youth offers invaluable support, advocacy, and opportunities for personal development and social interaction to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth ages 11-20.

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