House of Lords, Helen Swan take Lifetime Achievement Honors at Shelley Novak Awards

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Photo by Jose Cassola.

The House of Lords received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 25th annual Shelley Novak Awards — an event known for honoring drag entertainers and club kids of the scene, from Miami Beach to Fort Lauderdale.

Held at Kill Your Idol on Thursday, March 1, Angel Infiniti presented the award to Grandfather Alexis Lords and his crew of divas, who in nearly 25 years, have won numerous pageants, including Miss Miami Beach, Miss Florida, Ultimate Miami Drag Queen and Ultimate Bartender. The group was assembled in 1994.

Infiniti said when the House of Lords was established, “a family, a safe space, an authentic space where talent, support, participating in pageants, club and nightlife in the Miami LGBT movement” was formed.

“In and out of the ballroom scene, the House of Lords has exceeded and has been fierce in everything they have done,” Infiniti said. “The House of Lords has been an advocate in the community. With the rise of new HIV diagnoses in our community, the House of Lords continues to fight and educate, leading and paving the way for the new generation.”

Alexis Lords named Roger Lords the “new Father” of the House. He joined four years ago when he was inducted into the House during Miami Beach Gay Pride.

“I’m very honored, thrilled and excited for our new chapter we’re going to be having,” Roger Lords said. “No matter what, [Alexis] will still be my father, our iconic, overall father. We have over 80 members strong that all do something in the community. We are in Miami, Orlando, New Jersey, Los Angeles, Las Vegas. We even have as an honorary member Adore Delano from ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race.’”

Roger Lords says the House of Lords “represent a gay family, a community, a safe space, and above all, love.”

“In the community, many see us as leaders and people to look up to, but we are all open to help and be involved in our community,” Roger Lords said. “Being in a house is more than walking a ball for recognition. It’s helping our fellow queers to have a voice.”

The House of Lords also include TP Lords, Sasha Lords, Calypso Lords and Jasmine Lords, among others. Novak said bestowing “this honor on the House of Lords” was a “no-brainer and very deserving.”

“The House of Lords have been around forever, probably longer than I have,” Novak said.

Longtime Miami drag entertainer Helen Swan was the recipient of the second Lifetime Achievement Award of the evening. She was not present to receive the honor, but Novak accepted the award on her behalf, calling her a “fixture in the community.”

“She never fails to have a smile on her face when I see her in the clubs or out there in the world,” Novak said. “Whether it’s at Gay Pride or out in the clubs, she always has a smile on her face. She’s always there to listen to your problems, and she just makes you feel good. That’s really what a good person is all about.”

Other winners of the 25th Annual Shelley Novak awards were:

BEST DRAG NAME: Queef Latina





BEST MAKE UP: Persephone Von Lips

BEST NEW ARTIST: Candi Dixx and Celia Booze (tie)


BEST DRAG VENUE: Flaming Classics

BEST PERFORMANCE / NIGHT: Elishay D’Witshes climbs a double decker bus

BEST WIGS: Queef Latina

BEST DRAG KING: Andro Gin, Ded Cooter and King Femme (three-way tie)

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