San Francisco Pride's Grand Marshals are local heroes from the nine-counties of the San Francisco Bay Area who have made significant contributions to the SF Bay Area LGBTQ community, or as openly gay members of the LGBTQ community, have made significant contributions to society at large.
Our Grand Marshals represent the LGBTQ community's highest ambitions for inclusion, justice and equality, and Pride welcomes the community's input in our selections. San Francisco Pride's Grand Marshals fall into the following categories:
- Community Grand Marshals
- Organizational Grand Marshals
- Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshals
- Celebrity Grand Marshals
Detailed definitions of these categories can be found in our Policies and Procedures regarding the Grand Marshal and Pink Brick Award.
San Francisco Pride recognizes community leaders and one infamous detractor in the following categories:
- Celebrity Grand Marshals for the 2012 Parade
- Organizational Community Grand Marshal
- Individual Community Grand Marshals
- Pink Brick
2014 Celebrity Grand Marshals
2014 Special Guests
2015 Celebrity Grand Marshal
2015 Community Grand Marshals
Selected by community vote in March
Olivia has marched in the San Francisco Pride parade since 1977 and Olivia co-founder Judy Dlugacz has been fighting for equality and LGBT rights even longer. As co-founder of Olivia Records and Olivia Travel, Judy has been recognized by the GGBA of San Francisco and honored by Ernst and Young as its Northern California Entrepreneur of the Year. Just before “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” and DOMA were overturned, Judy was the driving force behind six women’s roundtable discussions with Michelle Obama to create a voice on issues that impact LGBT women. Judy, through Olivia, is also one of the founding partners of the USAID LGBT Global Development Partnership. She has changed the course of lesbian history, not only in San Francisco, but around the world.
I am happy to accept this honor. The Parade has been such an important historic and affirming part of the lives of the LGBT community. My first SF Pride parade was back in 1978 when Olivia Records marched after releasing the album "Lesbian Concentrate" in response to Anita Bryant. I am so honored to be amongst such an extraordinary group of nominees and am so proud of our community as we begin to see the positive changes thanks to the hard work and dedication of so many. It is a great year to celebrate and to stay vigilant!
Selected by the San Francisco Pride Membership in March
Alicia Garza is a co-founder of #BlackLivesMatter which began as a hashtag and grew into a national organizing project that is an affirmation and embrace of the resistance and resilience of Black people. She is currently the Special Projects Director at the National Domestic Workers Alliance and previously served as Executive Director of People Organized to Win Employment Rights (POWER) in San Francisco CA. She has been the recipient of multiple awards for her organizing work in Black and Latino communities throughout the Bay Area.
It is an incredible honor to have been selected as the SF Pride Membership's Choice for Community Grand Marshal. This is a testament to the importance of this political moment and that we have been successful in making visible the connections between our struggles — by placing emphasis on the need to value ALL Black lives, including Black queer and trans lives.
Selected by the San Francisco Pride Board of Directors in April
Brian Basinger is a leading voice for the LGBTQI and HIV communities facing poverty and homelessness. Under his direction, the AIDS Housing Alliance/SF has prevented the eviction, or found housing for 2700 households, by providing financial assistance for back rent and deposits, providing affordable housing applications, educating tenants on their rights, and mediating landlord disputes. Policy achievements include: initiating the soon–to-open LGBTQ adult homeless shelter, inspiring the LGBTQ Project Homeless Connect, passing legislation to curb speculative evictions, passing legislation granting domestic partners the legal right to live together in rental housing, leading the efforts to secure funding to make the first LGBTQ senior housing in San Francisco 100% affordable, and recently worked on passing legislation with Supervisor David Campos requiring national housing developers to disclose if they provide consistent protections against housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
I’m deeply grateful to the SF Pride Board of Directors for highlighting the critical importance of housing and homelessness services for the LGBTQ and allied communities by appointing me as Community Grand Marshal for 2015. I accept this honor with the desire to reflect it back to every single person who is struggling with keeping hope alive during this housing crisis. Together, we will make a difference.
Selected by San Francisco Pride Board of Directors in April
Belo Miguel Cipriani was born in Guatemala City to parents of Italian and Brazilian heritage and is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and English. He is an award-winning author, a staffing professional, a freelance journalist, and a disabilities advocate. He is the career expert for the Ed Baxter Show on Talk Radio San Francisco 910AM, a spokesperson for Guide Dogs for the Blind, and the author of two books — Blind: A Memoir and Midday Dreams. Additionally, he was the keynote speaker for the 2011 Americans with Disabilities Act celebration in San Francisco and for the 2012 queer conference at Skyline College, CA. He was also invited to be a guest lecturer at both Yale University and the University of San Francisco. Belo currently lives in San Francisco with his guide dog, Oslo. To learn more about Belo, visit BeloCipriani.com and connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube.
I’ve been attending SF Pride since 1995 and it feels surreal to be the first blind community grand marshal. I’m truly moved.
2015 Organizational Community Grand Marshal
Transgender Law Center
Selected by community vote in March
Transgender Law Center changes law, policy, and attitudes so that all people can live safely, authentically, and free from discrimination regardless of their gender identity or expression. Since its founding in San Francisco in 2002, TLC has provided legal information to 17,000 transgender people and their families. As the USA’s largest trans-led organization, TLC is a leading voice in national transgender advocacy. Rooted in racial and economic justice values, TLC secures groundbreaking victories in the Bay Area and beyond.
Transgender Law Center is humbled and excited to represent the transgender and gender nonconforming community at SF Pride this year as the Organizational Grand Marshal. Our selection reflects the critical moment we are in: 2015 has been a year of unprecedented visibility for the transgender community in everything from media coverage to the President’s State of the Union address, and yet it has already been a year of epidemic levels of violence targeting our community and transgender women of color in particular. We are honored that, at this critical time, the community is recognizing our role and our work to create a world where all people can live as their authentic selves. - Kris Hayashi, Executive Director
2015 Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal
Felicia A. Elizondo, AKA Felicia Flames, calls herself a Screaming Queen, pioneer, legend, icon, and a diva. A 28-year survivor of HIV+, she is also a Vietnam veteran. Born July 23, 1946, in San Angelo, Texas, her activism started the day she was born, fighting all her life for who she was meant to be – from being harassed, having kids make fun of her, molested, beaten up, raped, and thrown in jail. Felicia first came to San Francisco in 1963, changed her sex in 1974, and moved here in 1993. She worked for SF AIDS Foundation, Project Open Hand, Shanti, and SF LGBT Community Center. Felicia started raising money for AIDS and organizations such as the Aris Project, the Names Project, Project Open Hand, Shanti, SF AIDS Walk, Tenderloin Tessie Dinners, and a lot more.
I am excited, overwhelmed, and especially honored, that I am going to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award 2015. I want to thank the SF Pride Board Directors… Wow! I have been waiting for years to get honored, I have arrived! Thank you to all. My life and my historic background has paid off. Making sure our LGBT history is never forgotten. To continue the fight, always.
Heritage of Pride Awards
10 Years of Service Award
For those organizations, individuals, or other entities that have contributed ten (10) years of consecutive service to the LGBTQ community.
Tom Taylor & Jerome Goldstein
Tom Taylor and Jerry Goldstein met at the Barracks Baths in 1973. There was no fanfare of personality, status, or accomplishment, just the raw intimacy of male sexual bonding. After a tour around the world in 1983, they dedicated as much as could be totally productive to HIV and LGBTQ services as possible, including Project Open Hand and Ruth Brinker. Their home on 21st Street has been used for numerous events to benefit and promote the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, the Gay Lawyers, the Gay Veterinarians, the Marching Band and tap troupe, and the cause of the Rainbow Flag. Tom Taylor selflessly executes continually for the flag on Market and Castro, the new lighting of the flag, and the annual Rainbow Flags that adorn Market and Castro Streets for Pride. They create an annual Christmas display, for which their tree has been suggested as a historic landmark in San Francisco.
Tom Taylor and I are humbled and honored by the proposed award. We do what we feel will have a lasting impact on our beloved LGBTQ community in San Francisco and around the world.
Pride Freedom Award
For outstanding contributions to advancing civil rights and freedom for LGBTQ people.
Mary is a first generation from a West Indian heritage, having relocated to San Francisco by way of Boston, then New York. She arrived in the Bay Area in 1974 with her two wonderful children. Her gay and lesbian political work began in 1975 as a board member for a halfway house for lesbians and gay men. In 1979, she facilitated a women's group meeting in the Women's Building. An author, she wrote Brown on Brown, Black lesbian erotica. Currently, she pens an inspirational column celebrating eight years at www.thewesternedition.com. Mary has also been a speaker at SFSU for 20 years on demystifying homosexuality, and she co-founded the NIA Collective in 1987.
I feel happy and surprised. I have put my energy in the community and to be rewarded is exciting. I appreciate everyone who participated and worked in the community during my 44 years of fun and politics. You all helped make this award happen. A big hug and thanks to all you San Franciscans!
Pride Creativity Award
For outstanding artistic contribution to the LGBTQ community.
Monica served in the Navy from 1970 to 1978, on two submarines. She has two sons and three grandsons. In 1997, she began her transition, created the Transgender Pride Flag in 1999, and donated the original to the Smithsonian in 2014. In 2000, she moved from Arizona to Georgia, worked for Sprint for 25 years, retiring in January 2015. She co-founded the Transgender American Veterans Association in 2003 for better treatment for Trans people in the VA. In 2004, she attended the Democratic National Convention, the first Trans person delegate from Georgia.
I feel humbled to be honored with the Heritage of Pride - Pride Creativity Award for creating the Transgender Pride Flag. To see it being used all over the world is something I could have never expected when I held the first one in my hands in 1999.
Pride Community Award
Given for outstanding service to LGBTQ communities.
At the age of 12, Harry began helping in the publicity and promotions department for Warner Brothers by rolling movie posters. He moved to San Francisco in 1989 and began a career doing publicity and promotions for the motion picture industry. He met Allen Eggman, his husband of 22 years, in 1993. During the summer of 1995 they started Lazy Bear Weekend at the Russian River, and have raised over $1.5 million dollars for various charities during the 19 years of the event. They have recently relocated to Florida.
I am honored that the SF Pride Committee feels that I am deserving of this recognition. Like everything in life, you get back what you put into it. Many people have contributed to my fundraising efforts. My efforts also saved my life. After years of fundraising for the community, I was in need myself. I had a stroke while in Cancun, and the Community raised enough money to fly me home. I am proud and thankful for this honor.
2015 Gilbert Baker Pride Founder's Award
Honoring those who have made a significant and historical impact on the LGBTQ community and the movement for LGBTQ rights.
Patrick Carney is the organizer and co-founder of the gigantic Pink Triangle on Twin Peaks, which will have its 20th display during Pride Weekend 2015. He is also the sole founder of the annual commemoration ceremony and celebration which immediately follows the installation (thepinktriangle.com). The project is a “visible yet mute reminder of man’s inhumanity to man” as well as a reclamation of the pink triangle as a symbol of Pride. He works tirelessly year after year to make sure the persecution of homosexuals during the holocaust and all throughout the world is never forgotten. He is a 34-year HIV/AIDS survivor, and has volunteered for various AIDS fundraisers and support organizations over the decades. He has resided in San Francisco since 1979, where he now lives with his husband, Hossein.
I am honored by this acknowledgement of nearly two decades of the Pink Triangle educational effort and hope it might remind others of the many struggles our forebears went through to get to where we are as a community today, but also hope it will shine a light on the hardships so many LGBTQIs around the world still face today in countries such as Uganda, Nigeria, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Jamaica, Brunei, Yemen, Russia – unfortunately the list goes on and on. That giant one-acre Pink Triangle display isn’t up on Twin Peaks year after year just for decoration, it is there to educate people of the hatred of the past and to emphasize that such hatred still exists in many parts of the world today.
Audrey Joseph Entertainment Award
The Audrey Joseph LGBTQ Entertainment Award honors those who have made a significant and historical impact, or left an indelible impression, on the LGBTQ community and the movement for LGBTQ rights through their artistic expression or through their contribution within the entertainment industry.
Audrey has been a record executive, club manager, LGBT rights activist, former President and current member of the San Francisco Entertainment Commission. She started in the recording industry as a nightclub manager and later a record executive responsible for some disco-era dance hits. She relocated from New York to San Francisco and opened a popular club and event venue, 177 Townsend/174 King Street, and several gay clubs at those venues including Pleasuredome, Club Universe, and others used for fundraising and events particular to the LGBT community. Joseph was appointed to the San Francisco Entertainment Commission by Mayor Willie L. Brown and took office in July 2003. She has served as the commission's vice president and president several times. She became involved with AIDS activism organizations fighting the AIDS pandemic and hosting many fundraisers, including the first leather subculture contests in San Francisco. Joseph produced the San Francisco Pride celebration main stage for many years.
To have my passion for music and entertainment recognized by an award for excellence in my field is an unexpected honor. I am excited to be the first recipient and look forward to those recipients that will follow.
José Julio Sarria History Maker Award
Awarded to Bay Area people who make extraordinary changes in the way society views the LGBTQ community.
Julia & Sam Thoron
Julia and Sam Thoron are the parents of two straight sons, and a lesbian daughter who came out to them in January 1990. Their rich history of dedication to the LGBT communities began in the summer of 1990 when they became part of the steering committee of the San Francisco Chapter of PFLAG. Julia went on to become Chapter Chair and served in that capacity until she retired in December 2014. Sam joined the PFLAG National Board of Directors in 1992, serving for 9 years. In 2002 he was asked to rejoin the Board as National President for a 4-year term. He continued to serve on the Board until 2011. He now serves on the Board of Directors of Freedom to Marry. Julia and Sam were featured in the lead TV commercial for the campaign to defeat Proposition 8. Julia and Sam’s history of advocacy for LGBT equality springs from their sense of justice and fair play for all, and from their dedication to the principle that their daughter deserves to be treated with full and equal respect and dignity in every aspect of her life, enjoying all the rights, privileges and obligations of full citizenship.
We are honored to receive the José Julio Sarria History Maker Award recognizing our work toward full equality for the LGBT communities. The very name of this award reminds us that change and progress are always made on the shoulders of those who have gone before. We are deeply grateful for the examples and accomplishments of the pioneers like José Sarria and so many others.
Teddy Witherington Award
Awarded by the current City of San Francisco Mayor, recognizing those individuals who have contributed a longstanding, large body of work to the LGBTQ community.
Tita Aida (AKA Nikki Calma)
Tita Aida has been a familiar name to the Bay Area for the past 20 years, known as a tireless and proud transgender community leader in the Asian & Pacific Islander LGBTQI community and the greater LGBTQI of the Bay Area. Her grassroots activism and advocacy spearheaded initiatives and programs to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS in the A&PI LGBT community. Tita was appointed by Mayor Gavin Newsom to be the first Transgender member serving on the Commission on the Status of Women. She has also produced events that mobilized the Transgender community and raised significant support for various organizations, including the Transgender Law Center, AIDS Housing Alliance, and A&PI Wellness Center. Currently, Tita manages the A&PI Wellness Center’s TRANS:THRIVE Program, a drop-in center that is dedicated to helping the transgender community succeed in San Francisco. Awards received include the GAPA George Choy Community Award, KQED’s Pride Unsung Hero Award, Transgender Law Center Vanguard Award, Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center’s Grassroots Award, and the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club/Bill Krauss HIV/AIDS Activism Award.
I have always admired Teddy Witherington! I am honored and excited to accept this recognition. It will serve as an inspiration to continue what I enjoy doing, working with the various communities I identify with.
Past Grand Marshals
Celebrity Grand Marshals:
Guest of Honor:
Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal:
Gilbert Baker Pride Founder's Award:
Individual Community Grand Marshals:
Organizational Grand Marshal:
Honorary Grand Marshal:
Pink Brick Recipient:
More Grand Marshal History 2003-2008
|Marion||Abdullah||2006 Community Grand Marshal|
|Tom||Ammiano||2000 Community Grand Marshal|
|Erick||Argüello||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Jennifer||Beals||2006 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Joan||Benoît||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Robert||Bernardo||2006 Community Grand Marshal|
|Billy deFrank LGBT Center of San Jose||2006 Organizational Community Grand Marshal|
|Sgt. Elliot||Blackstone||2006 Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal|
|Randy||Burns||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Marvin||Burrows||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Joey||Cain||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Dolores||Caruthers||2007 Community Grand Marshal w/ Laura Espinosa as a couple|
|Ilene||Chaiken||2005 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Margaret||Cho||2000 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Cecilia||Chung||2006 Community Grand Marshal|
|Cristy||Chung||2006 Community Grand Marshal - shared honor with Lancy Woo|
|Alan||Cumming||2004 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Equality California||2005 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|Laura||Espinosa||2007 Community Grand Marshal w/ Dolores Caruthers as a couple|
|Doretha||Flournoy-Williams||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Stuart||Gaffney||2007 Community Grand Marshal w/ John Lewis as a couple|
|Marina||Gatto||2003 Community Grand Marshal|
|Calvin||Gipson||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Marga||Gomez||2003 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
2007 Community Grand
2004 Honorary Grand Marshal
|Heklina||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Page||Hodel||2007 Community Grand Marshal|
|James||Hormel||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Happy||Hyder||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Inter-Club Fund||2005 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|Honey||Labrador||2006 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Cyndi||Lauper||2008 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Reichen||Lehmkuhl||2006 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|John||Lewis||2007 Community Grand Marshal w/ Stuart Gaffney as a couple|
|Evan||Low||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Alec||Mapa||2005 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Vicki||Marelene||2003 Community Grand Marshal|
|Armistead||Maupin||2003 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Dr. Kathleen||McGuire||2006 Community Grand Marshal|
Grand Marshal w/ Davina Kotulski as a
2005 Community Grand Marshal
|The Producers of "Milk"||2008 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Stuart||Milk||2008 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Peggy||Moore||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Juanita||More||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|National Center for Lesbian Rights||2005 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|Gavin||Newsom||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Gay Asian Pacific Alliance||2008 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|John||Newsome||2007 Community Grand Marshal|
|Pat||Norman||Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal 2007|
|Pets Are Wonderful Support (PAWS)||2005 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|Rev. Troy||Perry||2004 Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal|
|Terry||Person-Harris||2003 Community Grand Marshal|
|Dr. Carol||Queen||2001 Community Grand Marshal|
|Rainbow World Fund||2007 Organizational Community Grand Marshal|
|Kate||Raphael||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Drago||Renteria||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Sal||Rosselli||2006 Community Grand Marshal|
|Donna||Sachet||2005 Community Grand Marshal|
|Jose||Sarria||2005 Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshall|
|SF TEAM||2005 Organizational Grand Marshal|
|Theresa||Sparks||2008 Lifetime Achievement Grand Marshal|
|Mabel||Teng||2004 Community Grand Marshal|
|Esera||Tuaolo||2005 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Julius||Turman||2008 Community Grand Marshal|
|Bruce||Vilanch||2004 Celebrity Grand Marshal|
|Hank||Wilson||2003 Community Grand Marshal|
|Lancy||Woo||2006 Community Grand Marshal - shared honor with Cristy Chung|