LGBT advocacy group Equality Virginia has named their 2012 OUTstanding Virginians, an honor given to Virginians who “represent Virginia’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community with distinction.”
The five honorees for this year are:
Sally Baird, the first out lesbian to serve on the Arlington County School Board
Nicholas Benton, founder of the Falls Church News-Press and the “Nicholas F. Benton Diversity Affirmation Education Fund”, which is devoted to furthering pro-diversity and anti-discrimination initiatives in Falls Church City Public Schools
Hugh Copeland, founder of Norfolk’s Hurrah Players
Jean Elliott, founder of Gay in Appalachia at Virginia Tech, which spotlights LGBT filmmakers and writers
Edward Strickler, a Charlottesville-based activist and community organizer who has worked with such organizations as the Virginia Antiviolence Project, the Virginia Human Rights Council, and the Diocese of Virginia Committee on HIV/AIDS.
The 2012 recipients will be honored at 9th Annual Commonwealth Dinner, which will be held on April 14. Guest speakers at the dinner will include actress Dot-Marie Jones of Glee and David McFarland, Interim Executive Director of The Trevor Project.