Independent Staff Report
WEST HOLLYWOOD — The city will host a joint ceremony of the annual Rainbow Key Awards and Etheridge Award to recognize people and groups who have made outstanding contributions to the gay and lesbian community.
This year’s Rainbow Key Awards/Etheridge Award will be held virtually via the Zoom platform at 6 p.m. Aug 19. Details for registering and live-viewing of the ceremony via Zoom are available at www.weho.org/rainbowkey. Following the event, the ceremony will made available for replay viewing on the city’s WeHoTV YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/wehotv.
Each year, the West Hollywood City Council selects award recipients following recommendations made through a nomination process overseen by the city’s Lesbian and Gay Advisory.
This year’s Rainbow Key Awards honorees are: Dante Alencastre, local documentary filmmaker and LGBT community activist; Grace Baldridge, local musician and composer; Jeff Consoletti, producer of LA Pride; Sophie B. Hawkins, Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, writer, actor and painter; NiK Kacy, a gender-non-binary trans-masculine fashion designer and host of the annual Equality Fashion Week; Troy Masters, publisher of Los Angeles Blade, Los Angeles’ LGBT newspaper; Paulo Murillo, editor in chief and publisher of the WeHo Times; and Adrian Ravarour, founder of San Francisco-based Vanguard, who is also a priest and spiritual artist.
The city has presented Rainbow Key Awards since 1993. Previous honorees have included activists, artists, civic leaders, educators, community organizations and many others. More than 155 Rainbow Key Awards have been presented since the award’s inception.
This year’s Etheridge Award will be conferred to legendary LGBTQ+ rights activist and outgoing CEO of the Los Angeles LGBT Center and the former CEO of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Lorri L. Jean, for her relentless advocacy and tireless efforts on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community.
The Etheridge Award was established by the city’s Lesbian Visibility Committee, a committee formed to support and promote activism, creativity and community for Lesbians. The Etheridge Award was first presented to singer-songwriter and activist Melissa Etheridge in 2007.
Etheridge later agreed to lend her name to the award because of her commitment to furthering women’s health and fostering visibility and support for the lesbian community. In addition to Etheridge, the award has been presented to county Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, Jinx Beers, Jewel Thais-Williams, Rita Gonzales, Ivy Bottini, Jeanette Bronson, Jeanne Cordova, the June Mazer Lesbian Archives, Patrisse Cullors and Marna Deitch.