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White House honors arts, humanities

Parker, Pacino on hand for Monday ceremony

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Sarah Jessica Parker and Kevin Naff, gay news, gay politics dc

Actress Sarah Jessica Parker and Blade editor Kevin Naff at Monday’s White House reception.

Any event at the White House is exciting but when the president and Michelle Obama are honoring the Arts and Humanities it is even better. There was a small reception prior to the awards presentation and a larger one immediately after. I had the good fortune to have a front-row seat and got to meet some of the awardees.

There were eight recipients of the National Medal of Arts including Rita Dove, Poet Laureate of the United States from 1993 to 1995. The statement in the program talked about Ms. Dove’s poetry as a blend of politics with beauty, lyricism and critique. Also receiving an Arts Medal was Al Pacino who was recognized for his iconic contributions to American film and theater as an actor and director. Mel Tillis was honored for his contribution to country music and his more than 1,000 songs and 60 albums.

The Humanities Medal recipients included Robert Darnton for his commitment to making knowledge accessible to everyone and his vision for a national library of digitized books and Teofilo F. Ruiz for his scholarship in history and exploring the role terror has played in society for centuries. Also receiving an award was National History Day for inspiring more than half a million young Americans each year to write, perform, research and document the human story.

The biggest round of applause for the president came when he said, “As long as I am the president this country will remain committed to the Arts and Humanities and to what they do to lift and inform the human spirit.”

There were some additional familiar faces at the event including actress Sarah Jessica Parker, who cheered and snapped photos of the president as he spoke. The event took place in the East Room and the reception ran into a several adjoining rooms, including the sumptuous Red Room.

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Blade Blog

National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce Certifies Brown, Naff, Pitts Omnimedia, Inc

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Washington, D.C. — Brown, Naff, Pitts Omnimedia, Inc, the parent company of the Washington Blade and Azer Creative, announced today it has been certified by the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) as an LGBT Business Enterprise. The NGLCC supports and advocates for diversity and inclusion for LGBT-owned businesses. With this certification the Blade’s parent company joins more than 510 business and 134 corporate partners of the NGLCC.

Brown, Naff, Pitts Omnimedia, Inc. owns and operates the Washington Blade, the oldest and most acclaimed LGBT newspaper in the country. In 2012, the company launched Azer Creative, a full-service design firm. The company employs more than a dozen full-time LGBT staff.

“We are excited to become one of the 500 LGBT businesses across the country certified by NGLCC,” said Lynne Brown, the Blade’s publisher and a co-owner of the company. “The LGBT community has been part of our company from the beginning and we look forward to continue that for many years to come.”

The Washington Blade was founded in 1969 and is known as the “newspaper of record” for the LGBT community both locally and nationally. Visit washingtonblade.com for more information. Azer Creative is a full-service graphic design firm based in Washington, D.C. Visit azercreative.com for more information. 

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Blade Blog

Vote now for the 2013 Best of Gay DC!

Choose in dozens of categories among hundreds of nominees, and make your voice heard!

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Best of Gay D.C., Gay news, Washington Blade
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Blade Blog

Nominate the ‘Best of Gay D.C.’ now!

Dozens of categories cover all the best for LGBT Washington. Who deserves the prize this year?

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Best of Gay D.C., Gay news, Washington Blade
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