The 2016 Pride Parade Grand Marshals and Honorees were selected to demonstrate our theme this year of “Are You Connected?” by illustrating the inclusion, tolerance, acceptance and diversity at work in the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection,
Hon. James Kenny– Friend of Pride
Jim Kenney, the Mayor or Philadelphia, has been one of our most steadfast allies, both as a City Councilman and now as our newly elected mayor. We have had the pleasure of honoring the Mayor in the past, but we have never honored him as leader of Philadelphia. “Friend of Pride” is yearly awarded to one of our supporters in the straight community, because, without these supporters, we would not be able to achieve equal status.
LGBT Employees of the City of Philadelphia — Grand Marshals
The LGBT employees of the city of Philadelphia marched as a unit in our 2015 gay pride parade at the urging of the indomitable Nellie Fitzpatrick, the Director of LGBT Affairs Office of Mayor Kenny. This is our second collective Grand Marshal award. These workers serve our LGBT community as well as the greater community of the City of Philadelphia every day in many way
Philadelphia GOAL, Gay Officer’s Action League — Grand Marshals
Philadelphia G.O.A.L. is a social and community organization comprised of present and former criminal justice personnel. It functions as a support group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender sworn public safety officers as well as civilian employees. G.O.A.L. provides peer support to members, serves as a forum for members to share their knowledge and experience and to discover solutions to problems faced by members and agencies. It supports members struggling with issues such as coming out at work.
Phila. G.O.A.L. has declined our award as grand marshal. They will still appear in our “Pride Guide” because it had gone to print.
Paige Cortez — Youth Marshal
Paige Cortez is 17 years old and attends Frankford High School. She is currently a high school intern at the Attic Youth Center, collaborating with other Attic youth to create an art exhibition. She is also a dancer, drag performer, and youth leader whose sense of humor is admired by all. Her future plans are to be a nurse and with with older adults as well as to continue to perform at spaces within the LGBTQ community. Paige had a difficult timecoming out to her family and has found that performing makes her feel confident and invincible. She wants all young people to know that it is definitely okay to live your truth.
Vincent Taylor — Youth Marshal
Vincent Taylor is a freshman at Community College of Philadelphia and is studying music and performing arts. He is a musician, performer, and a leader in the HIV prevention community. He is an active participant at the Attic Youth Center, a dancer and dedicated , member of the Attic’s drag group, performing as “Vendetta.” Vincent writes music and creates music videos in his free time and he plans to become an out musical artist. As someone who used to be shy and was a victim of bullying, he wants others to know that each person is unique and that you should always be yourself and stay confident.