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Flavell takes over AGLA; local attorneys honored

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Troy Cline, gay news, Washington Blade
Comings & Goings, gay news, Washington Blade

The ‘Comings & Goings’ column chronicles important life changes of Blade readers.

The Comings & Goings column is about sharing the professional successes of our community. We want to recognize those landing new jobs, new clients for their business, joining boards of organizations and other achievements. Please share your successes with us at [email protected].

TJ Flavell was recently named president of the Arlington Gay & Lesbian Alliance, which is celebrating its 35th year. In addition to serving as AGLA’s president, Flavell serves on the Human Rights Campaign’s Greater Washington D.C. Steering Committee as communications chair and is the founder of Go Gay DC, gogaydc.org, a popular online destination. Flavell previously served as president of PEN, now the Capital Area Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, and as president of the Alexandria Gay & Lesbian Community Association.

TJ Flavell

TJ Flavell

He said, “I’m delighted to serve as AGLA’s president. AGLA is a strong local beacon for equality in Northern Virginia. It’s an inclusive, nonpartisan nonprofit open to LGBTQ people and straight allies. It provides fun social activities, builds relationships with elected officials, and works with civic groups on community service.”

AGLA is growing and the board of directors voted last year to reach beyond Arlington and serve LGBT people and allies across Northern Virginia. AGLA has a scholarship program and oversees the annual Mister and Miss Gay Arlington Pageant held at Freddie’s Beach Bar & Restaurant.

“Freddie Lutz, the owner of Freddie’s Beach Bar & Restaurant, has been incredibly supportive in providing AGLA with the rich community focal point from which it can radiate and grow,” Flavell said. “We couldn’t do all this without Freddie.”

For nearly 30 years, Flavell’s career has been focused on transforming education through the use of technology. Currently serving as an online communications specialist for an education nonprofit, he has served as manager of the National School Boards Association’s Technology Leadership Network, a consortium of tech-savvy school districts.

Congratulations are also due to Ashland Johnson, Olivia Hunt, Barbara A. Schwabauer, Jason R. Parish and Michael Bosworth, five local attorneys who have been named by the National LGBT Bar Association as part of its 2016 list of “40 Best Under 40.” The organization is the nation’s largest membership association of LGBT and allied legal professionals. These attorneys are recognized as the country’s most accomplished young LGBT legal professionals. The list includes young lawyers from across the country who have distinguished themselves in their field and demonstrated a commitment to LGBT equality. Their awards will be presented during the organization’s Lavender Law Conference & Career Fair in D.C. on Aug. 5.

D’Arcy Kemnitz, executive director of the bar said, “This year’s ‘Best under 40’ prove how necessary diversity is to a thriving legal community. These young attorneys represent the very best of the profession. They come from law firms, non-profits, corporations and the government. Their breadth of knowledge and legal expertise demonstrate the significant talent the LGBT community brings to the law, and highlight the impact a few can have on the greater good. We’re proud to honor them and all that they have accomplished.”

Johnson is director of policy campaigns for Athlete Ally; Hunt is an AmeriCorps fellow at Whitman-Walker Health Legal Services; Bosworth is deputy assistant to the president, deputy counsel to the president, in the White House Counsel’s Office; Schwabauer is a trial attorney with the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Litigation Section; and Parish is a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

TJ Flavell, gay news, Washington Blade

Ashland Johnson

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Comings & Goings

Umana named associate with Gustafson Guthrie Nichol

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Wolfgang Umana (Photo courtesy of Umana)

The Comings & Goings column is about sharing the professional successes of our community. We want to recognize those landing new jobs, new clients for their business, joining boards of organizations and other achievements. Please share your successes with us at: [email protected]

Congratulations to Wolfgang Umana on being named an associate with Gustafson Guthrie Nichol (GGN). He has been with them for more than five years and is currently its D.C. studio’s office manager. 

“I am honored to become GGN’s newest Associate,” Umana said.I have the glorious privilege of supporting GGN’s continuing dedication to progress, inclusion, social justice, sustainability, and beautification of the world we live in.”

Umana also works with NBR Computer Consulting as an LLC Computer Technician consultant. He has experience in social media, communications, outreach, and technical services, and provides a dynamic approach to the fast-changing world of technology. NBR Computer Consulting, LLC is a gay-owned business. 

Umana has also served as D.C. Army National Guard Director of Environmental Affairs and with EMS Consultation Services. 

He has his bachelor’s in Environmental Science & Public Policy, Human and Ecosystem Response to Climate Change, from George Mason University. 

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Capital Pride bids for D.C. to host World Pride 2025

International event draws thousands of visitors

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Confetti rained down in New York’s Times Square at Stonewall 50 WorldPride New York’s closing ceremony two years ago. D.C. organizers hope to host the event in 2025. (Blade photo by Lou Chibbaro, Jr.)

The Capital Pride Alliance, the group that organizes D.C.’s annual LGBTQ Pride events, announced on Sept. 21 that it has submitted a bid to host 2025 World Pride, the international Pride event that draws thousands of participants from throughout the world to the host city.

The announcement by Capital Pride says its bid to host the event in D.C. notes that the event, among other things, would commemorate the 50th anniversary of D.C.’s first LGBTQ Pride event in 1975, which began as a block party near Dupont Circle.

World Pride is licensed and administered by the international LGBTQ organization InterPride. The World Pride events themselves, which usually take place every other year, are organized by InterPride’s member organizations such as Capital Pride Alliance.

The Capital Pride announcement notes that World Pride “promotes visibility and awareness of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ+) issues on a global level.” The announcement adds, “World Pride events include parades, marches, festivals and other cultural activities often enjoyed at Pride celebrations, along with other components such as a human rights conference and large-scale opening and closing ceremonies.”

The InterPride website says the deadline for submitting a bid for the 2025 World Pride has passed. It says D.C.’s Capital Pride and Kaohsiung Pride, located in the large Taiwan port city of Kaohsiung, are the only two remaining cities in competition for hosting the 2025 World Pride.

Ryan Bos, Capital Pride’s executive director, said InterPride was expected to make its decision on which of the two cities to select sometime in November of this year.

“A recent study conducted by Booz Allen Hamilton revealed that the annual Capital Pride Celebrations, during normal years, result in approximately $371 million in positive economic impacts to the region, a number that may be doubled if the organization is awarded the prestigious event,” the Capital Pride statement says.

The 2021 World Pride took place earlier this year in Copenhagen, Denmark. The 2019 World Pride was held in New York City to commemorate the 50th anniversary of New York’s Stonewall riots, which many activists consider the start of the modern LGBTQ rights movement.

InterPride says the 2023 World Pride will take place in Sydney, Australia.

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Va. county supervisors back resolution against ‘required’ pronoun questions

Unanimous vote in Stafford County allows school defunding

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What's Your Pronoun? review, gay news, Washington Blade
(Image courtesy of Liveright Publishing)

The Stafford County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously approved a resolution that gives it the authority to deny funds to schools that require students to give their pronouns and teach the 1619 Project and critical race theory.

The resolution denounces “the teaching of the 1619 Project and critical race theory (CRT) and related principles in Stafford County Public Schools,” and states the board does not support Stafford County Public School students “being required to identify their chosen pronouns.”

The approved document had been updated to change “requested” to give pronouns to “required.”

Republican Supervisor Gary Snellings told the board he brought the resolution forward, which passed by a 6-0 vote margin, in response to communication from parents. One supervisor was not present.

Snellings called critical race theory “racism.” He also called the New York Times’ 1619 Project published on the 400th anniversary of the arrival of enslaved Africans to the Virginia colony a “theory.”

Critical race theory is not taught in Virginia public schools, but a state law passed in 2020 requires local school boards to adopt policies that are more inclusive for transgender and non-binary students that follow, or exceed, guidelines from the state’s Department of Education.

Snellings said the problem with preferred pronouns was in requiring students to give them. He said that was not in the governing Virginia law.

“This (resolution) does not eliminate anything. It just follows state law,” Snellings said.

A Virginia court in July dismissed a lawsuit that challenged the Department of Education’s guidelines for trans and non-binary students. Equality Virginia and the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia were parties to the amicus brief in support of the protections.

“We are deeply disappointed that these adults made such a hateful decision for kids in the community,” tweeted the ACLU of Virginia in response to the board’s vote.

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