May 20, 2008
2008 SAN FRANCISCO PRIDE CELEBRITY GRAND MARSHALS
Other Grand Marshals Will Include Charo, Stuart Milk and Theresa Sparks

SAN FRANCISCO - The San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee has announced additional 2008 Celebrity Grand Marshals. Cyndi Lauper, Charo and Stuart Milk will attend the celebration.

After winning a Grammy in 1985 for best new artist and becoming the first artist in history to have five top ten singles from a debut album, Cyndi Lauper continues to win critical acclaim as a singer, musician, actor and writer. Cyndi has released 11 albums, over 40 singles and has sold more than 25 million records worldwide.  She has been nominated for 13 Grammy Awards, 2 Emmy Awards, 2 American Music Awards, 7 American Video Awards, and 18 MTV awards.  

Cyndi Lauper is not only a popular music icon but has been a devoted advocate for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community for over 25 years. She launched the annual True Colors Tour in 2007 in partnership with organizations such as the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). Lauper and her sister Elen, who has been out for many years, also take part in a highly successful national public awareness campaign for PFLAG and participate in countless events to raise funds and awareness for LGBT equality. The True Colors Tour will be in the Bay Area during San Francisco’s LGBT Celebration. Lauper will be performing with the B-52’s and other special guests at the Greek Theater at UC Berkley on June 29th.

Another Celebrity Grand Marshal at this year’s parade will be María Rosario Pilar Martínez Molina Baeza, better known as Charo. Charo is a singer, dancer, comedian, actress, and an accomplished classical and flamenco guitarist.  Charo is much more than her trademarked phrase, "cuchi-cuchi", she has twice been named the “Best Flamenco Guitarist in the World” by Guitar Player Magazine, and her flamenco-inspired CD, Guitar Passion, went platinum and earned her the "Female Pop Album of the Year Award" at the 1995 Billboard International Latin Music Conference. Lindsey Jones, Executive Director of SF Pride stated, “I have always loved Charo. She is a queer icon who has brought needed visibility to the Latin community. We are thrilled to have her here.”  Her witty humor is expected to be an excellent addition to the celebration.

Stuart Milk, Harvey Milk’s nephew, will also be a Grand Marshal. Harvey Milk was the first openly gay elected official of any large city in the United States. This year marks the 30th anniversary of Milk’s death. He was assassinated in 1978, along with Mayor George Moscone, by then recently-resigned city supervisor Dan White. Harvey Milk helped to render significant political change in San Francisco and gave extended visibility to LGBT people. Stuart Milk will uphold Harvey’s legacy and add new dimensions to the Pride Celebration.

Theresa Sparks was named a Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal for this year’s parade. She is the president of Good Vibrations and was the first elected and openly transgendered President of the San Francisco Police Commission in 2007. The Individual Community Grand Marshals include Marvin Burrows, Joey Cain, Joan Benoît, Erick Aguello, Evan Low and Julius Turman. The Organizational Community Grand Marshal will be the Gay Asian Pacific Alliance (GAPA) and Honorary Grand Marshals are Brett Andrews, Miguel Bustos, Trauma Flintstone, Shannon Minter, Tina Phillips and Carol Queen. The Pink Brick recipient, a person or institution which has done significant harm to the interests of LGBT peoples, was awarded to Bill O’Reilly. Leslie Jordan, Emmy-Award winning actor and star of LOGO’s Sordid Lives, is predicted to be a special guest at the celebration. Margaret Cho, who has previously attended Pride, will also return for this year’s festivities. The San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee is excited to continually inform the community about the expanding 2008 lineup.

This year’s theme, United by Pride, Bound for Equality, highlights the continual solidarity of the LGBT community. With over 200 parade contingents, 300 exhibitors, and 20 entertainment stages and venues, the San Francisco Pride Celebration and Parade is the largest community-run LGBT event in the nation. More than 16 blocks surrounding the downtown Civic Center will be reserved for the festivities. The event is free of charge and caters to a wide array of individuals hosting areas such as an Elder Space, Family Garden, Dance Stage, Leather Alley and Latin Stage. Wheelchair accessible locations can easily be arranged and sign language interpretations will be available at multiple stages and venues. The San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee remains devoted to their purpose. They have given over one million dollars back to the community and continue to promote the ideals of community, heritage and liberation.  For more information please visit: www.sfpride.org.

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About San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee (SFLGBTPCC):
The San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee (SFPride.org) is a non-profit membership organization founded to produce the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration & Parade. With its office located at the San Francisco LGBT Community Center, SFLGBTPCC is dedicated to education, commemoration of LGBT heritage and celebration of LGBT culture and liberation. A world leader in the Pride movement, SFLGBTPCC is also a grant-giving organization through its Community Partners Program. Since 1997, SFLGBTPCC has granted over $1.2 million dollars from proceeds of the Pride Celebration and Parade to local not-for-profit LGBT organizations and those organizations serving the HIV/AIDS and breast cancer communities.

About the 2008 San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration & Parade:
This year marks the 38th anniversary of the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration and Parade. This year's theme is "United by Pride, Bound for Equality" and the event will be held over the weekend of June 28 and 29, 2008. With over 200 parade contingents, 300 exhibitors, and 18 entertainment stages and venues, San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration and Parade is the largest LGBT gathering in the nation. For more information please visit our website at SFPride.org.

Press Contact:
Kim McCollister
media [at] sfpride.org
415-864-0831