Snapshots: A Visit From Helem, GLAAD CEO Addresses Michfest and more

Wonder what we're up to at GLAAD? Be sure to check out GLAAD's blog each week for updates about latest work to build LGBT equality through news, entertainment and media. 

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Recently GLAAD's Program team met with Tarek Zeidan, one of the leaders of Helem, the Middle East’s first LGBT rights organization based in Beirut, Lebanon. It was an opportunity for GLAAD's staff to learn about the lives of LGBT people living in Lebanon, and for Mr. Zeidan to talk to GLAAD about effective ways to interact with the media to create cultural change. The two-hour meeting was quite productive and we look forward to continuing our dialogue with Mr. Zeidan and Helem in the future.


GLAAD board member and Chief Information Officer at Nike, Anthony Watson, was named the recipient of the 2014 ADVOCATE award. ADCOLOR is an "organization whose mission is to celebrate and champion diversity in the advertising, marketing, media, PR and entertainment industries." GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis will present the award during the ADCOLOR Awards on September 20 in Los Angeles. Read more

Pascal Tessier has worked extensively with GLAAD to advocate for change in the Boy Scouts of America. Last week, Pascal turned 18 years old. Because the ban on gay adults remains in place, that means that he faces expulsion from the Scouts. Pascal reflected on his birthday and what that means for his involvement with the Scouts in an open letter to Boy Scouts President Robert Gates, published at Read more here.


GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis and her wife, Kristen Henderson, penned an op-ed for The Advocate that urges support for the inclusion of transgender women at the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival. Henderson, who is a founding member of rock group Antigone Rising, says the band will not appear at the festival until it is inclusive of trans women. The op-ed also addressed a problematic article by the New Yorker that gave attention to those who seek to deny transgender women's existence. Read more here


GLAAD is highlighting the story of Hlengiwe Buthelezi, a South African participant in the Gay Games in Cleveland. She first attended the 2002 Gay Games in Sydney, and then the 2006 Gay Games in Chicago, where she won 7 gold medals for track. After she returned from Chicago, she faced tremendous difficulty. But she didn't let the bad experiences take her down. he founded KwaZulu Natal LGBT Recreation based in Durban, as my way to plough back into her community and pushing advocacy for LGBT struggles. Read more here.


GLAAD's Senior Media Strategist, Tiq Milan appeared on Ronan Farrow Daily on MSNBC discussing plight of LGBT immigrants at the boarder and the sexual assault of a transwoman being detained in Elot Arizona. Marichuy Gamino is a 23 year old Mexican transwoman who has been detained in a mens facility for over year. She was assaulted by an inmate at the detention center and there has been little recourse, highlighting the significant gaps in immigratin laws that protect LGBT immigrants.