A publisher, a Wilton Manors bar owner, an attorney and two politicians were among the honorees at this year’s Dolphin Democrats Equality for All Awards Reception, held Sunday at the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame in Dania Beach. More than 400 people attended the event. The Dolphin Democratic Club is Florida’s oldest and largest LGBT political organization.
Each year the event recognizes outstanding leaders who have demonstrated the strength to lead and a vision to improve the lives of those in the LGBT community and all deserving citizens. A portion of the proceeds of this year’s event will be donated to the Children’s Diagnostic and Treatment Center (Children with AIDS) House of Hope and Stepping Stones.
“This year’s event brings together the many people who are determined to rediscover their focus and resolve in order to maintain the momentum for change engendered by President Obama, and to insure the election of those who support his agenda and the rights of the LGBT community,” said Dean Trantalis, Co-Chair of the event.
Jennifer Morales and Laurie Whitaker were honored with the Jamie Bloodworth Award. The prestigious award goes to any self-identifying woman who has shown excellent leadership in improving community relations in the LGBT Community.
Whitaker is the owner of Sidelines Bar in Wilton Manors. Morales handles public relations for the bar. Sidelines has contributed to many Wilton Manors’ charitable organizations and major fundraising events – including sponsoring the Florida AIDS Walk. In addition, both women have been instrumental in the Dolphin’s Get out the Vote Campaigns.
Morales and Whitaker tell SFGN: “We are incredibly honored and proud to receive this award. When we opened Sidelines Sports Bar over 5 years ago, our focus was as business people working hard to be successful while giving back to our community. We never intended to receive such accolades and high praises, but it certainly is nice to be recognized in this way. Thanks must also go to an incredible staff of dedicated and hardworking people who each day step up and make us look good!”
The Trailblazer Award was awarded to Patricia Windowmaker, Counsel to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office. She worked for Transgender rights on a national level and included it in the hiring at the BSO.
Peter Clark received the Media Award. Clark is the publisher of Hotspots Magazine. Last year, Hotspots celebrated its 25th anniversary as part of Florida’s gay community.
Maroone/AutoNation received the Humanitarian Award. Maroone/AutoNation is a major sponsor of the International Rodeo, Broward House and the Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.
Congressman Ted Deutch took home the Political Alliance Award. Rep. Deutch serves Florida's 19th district in the House of Representatives. Deutch co-sponsored the Student Non-Discrimination Act of 2011to combat harassment and bullying of LGBT children in public schools. Anne Sallee, Vice Mayor of Oakland Park was honored as well. She was selected for her hard work in the Dolphin’s Get out the Vote Campaign.
Other award winners were: Broward House, Community Service Award; Women in Network, Broward Leadership Award; Tim Ross, Distinguished Service Award; Salvatore Torre, Volunteer Award; and Michael A. Albetta, Dolphin of the Year.
Visit www.DolphinDems.org for more information.