Over the weekend, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) celebrated the most outstanding images of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community in the media at the GLAAD Media Awards. Held in New York (there will also be ceremonies in Los Angeles and San Francisco), the GLAAD Media Awards brought celebrities, corporate partners, media professionals, and young adults together to amplify the voice of the LGBT community and achieve full equality. Among the guests, hosts, co-chairs, nominees and winners were LGBT people of color and straight allies representing our community and supporting our cause — hard.

The event’s co-chairs were transgender People.com editor and advocate Janet Mock and ESSENCE editor-at-large Emil Wilbekin. The two openly LGBT journalists of color raised thousands for the organization and brought out African American allies like Bevy Smith.

Award presenters included hip-hop icon Russell Simmons who, along with TV personality La La Vasquez Anthony, presented Pariah stars Adepero Oduye and Kim Wayans as well as producer Nekisa Cooper with the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Film – Limited Release.

Other award recipients included Black Enterprise magazine for their cover story “Black and Gay in Corporate America.” Editor-at-large Carolyn Brown accepted the Outstanding Magazine Article win by first thanking God and saying that being gay and Christian isn’t an oxymoron.

The Oprah Winfrey Show won Outstanding Talk Show Episode for “Coming Out on the Oprah Show: 25 Years of Unforgettable Guests.” While “Injustice at Every Turn” took home the award for Outstanding Digital Journalism-Multimedia. The video spotlighted the stories of trans people of color like ELIXHER’s InspiHERed By Ja’briel Walthour.

Additionally, EBONY.com’s editorial director Kierna Mayo was nominated for her Janet Mock piece in Marie Claire magazine. Openly gay journalist and blogger Rod McCullom’s “Making It Work” article in EBONY magazine was nominated in the same category. McCullom’s website Rod 2.0 was also nominated for Outstanding Blog.

And it didn’t stop there. “Black and Transgender: A Double Burden,” a powerful piece by Kellee Terrell for TheRoot.com, was nominated for Outstanding Digital Journalism Article. Meanwhile ESPN’s “Kye Allums” Outside the Lines, which profiled the black trans basketball player, was nominated for Outstanding TV Journalism Segment.

Celebs like Angolan beauty and Miss Universe winner Leila Lopes, America’s Next Top Model contestant Isis King, and trans actress Laverne Cox mingled with advocates and media-makers at the cocktail reception then dined together before the awards show kicked off. After the award recipients were announced, they all boogied on the dance floor. Numerous guests of color commented on how affirming it felt to see themselves reflected in this year’s show and expressed their hopes that future shows are this diverse.

Kudos to GLAAD on a job well done. ELIXHER congratulates all the nominees and award recipients.

Stay tuned for video footage of ELIXHER’s red carpet access!

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