Tuesday, July 24, 2018


What's happening at your publication? Let us know. Email editor Fred Kuhr at editor@presspassq.com

ADELANTE, based in Los Angeles, entered its 22nd year of publication with its June 2018 issue.

PETER BARTIS, a folklore expert who is credited with leading the development of the Library of Congress’ AMERICAN FOLKLIFE CENTER, died on December 25, 2017, of complications from lung cancer. He is survived by his husband GEORGE BENJAMIN ZURAS. He was 68.

BEN FINZEL is behind a new a new private list and Facebook group for LGBTQ communications professionals in Washington, D.C., with the goal of fostering professional development and networking. If interested in joining the list, email info@renewpr.com.

GED, which stands for GAY ENTERTAINMENT DIRECTORY and is based in Long Beach, Calif., entered its sixth year of publication with its June 2018 issue.

HELLO MR., based in Brooklyn, N.Y., is closing after six years and 10 issues.

JAMES SAKEZLES, known as JIM KELLY as a South Florida radio personality from the 1960s to the early 2000s, died on March 17, 2018. He was 64.

Connie Kurtz (r) and Ruthie Bermin
CONNIE KURTZ, the activist who appeared with her wife RUTHIE BERMIN in the documentary RUTHIE AND CONNIE: EVERY ROOM IN THE HOUSE, died on May 27, 2018. She is survived by Berman. Kurtz was 83.

GEOFF MANASSE, the famed Seattle-based photojournalist and commercial photographer, died suddenly on January 19, 2018. His 1995 book of photographs and interviews of 24 gay and lesbian families called MAKING LOVE VISIBLE: IN CELEBRATION OF GAY AND LESBIAN FAMILIES won a National Lambda Literary Award. He is survived by his husband BAO LE and his sons KAI LE and KENNETH LE DO. He was 77.
Tuesday Mahrle and Kaely Monahan

TUESDAY MAHRLE and KAELY MONAHAN, of the podcast WHISKEY AND POPCORN, are the newest contributors to Phoenix-based ECHO Magazine. They are behind the magazine’s new monthly “At The Box Office” film previews column.

THE NATIONAL LGBT CHAMBER OF COMMERCE is holding its largest annual conference in Philadelphia this year, with up to 5,000 people expected from August 14-17.

OUTSMART, based in Houston, Texas, published its largest issue ever - 212 pages - in June 2018.

THE WASHINGTON BLADE, based in D.C., was named a sponsor of Major League Baseball’s All-Star Week. The game and related events took place in mid-July at Nationals Park and other locations throughout the nation’s capital.

Volume 20
Issue 4

Results of annual LGBTQ Community Survey released

by Joe Siegel

More than 75 percent of LGBTQ people say they tend to support companies that market to and support the LGBTQ community.

That’s just one tidbit from the 12th Annual LGBTQ Community Survey report, which was recently released by San Francisco-based market research firm Community Marketing and Insights (CMI). 

More than 40,000 respondents from LGBTQ communities in 151 countries participated in this year’s survey. More than 200 LGBTQ media outlets, events and organizations worldwide partnered with CMI, helping to gain wide representation of respondents.

David Paisley, senior research director for CMI, said he has noticed a shift in survey results given the current presidential administration. 

“If we look at pre-Obama, it was really corporate America that drove LGBTQ equality in our government,” Paisley said. But now, there is now a lot of “apprehension” regarding what "the government and Supreme Court will do to LGBTQ rights in the coming years.”

CMI's David Paisley
Of the 18,000-plus LGBTQ survey respondents living in the United States, 76 percent fear there will be a roll back of recent equality gains in the coming year.

In the business realm, 85 percent agree that corporations that support LGBTQ equality are more important than ever, and 76 percent agree that companies that support LGBTQ equality will get more of their business this year.

There is also wide support for companies that support the transgender / gender-expansive community. Three quarters of respondents feel more positive towards companies that include transgender / gender-expansive community imagery in their outreach communications. However, only 6 percent think that corporations are currently doing a good job at outreaching to the transgender / gender-expansive community.

When asked if they live in an LGBT-friendly country, 5 percent of LGBTQ Americans strongly agreed that the United States was LGBT-friendly, 52 percent somewhat agreed, 43 percent somewhat or strongly disagreed.

This is in strong contrast to Canadians, where 62 percent strongly agreed they live in an LGBT-friendly country, 36 percent somewhat agreed, and only 2 percent somewhat or strongly disagreed.

The CMI team has been conducting LGBTQ consumer research for over 25 years. Their methodologies include online surveys, focus groups (in person and virtual), in-depth interviews and advisory boards across the United States and globally.

CMI will be hosting a webinar to not only review the survey results, but also interpret the data to help our clients reach their sales and outreach goals. The webinar, which will focus on United States respondents, will take place on Thursday, July 26, 2018, from 10am-11am Pacific Time. Go to https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/794545976477976833 to register for the free webinar.

Timed to the release of the report, CMI also debuted its new website at https://communitymarketinginc.com, better-organized to help those interested find this and other research reports on a variety of LGBTQ topics and issues for free download, as well info about our conferences and corporate training.

Go to http://research.communitymarketinginc.com/public/XBZj/zMz/subscribe to request a downloadable copy of CMI’s 12th Annual LGBTQ Community Survey report, available at no charge.

The survey was completed in partnership with Rivendell Media, which publishes Press Pass Q.

Volume 20
Issue 4

Journalists group announces awards ahead of convention

by Fred Kuhr

In anticipation of NLGJA - The Association of LGBTQ Journalists’ annual convention in September, the announced the recipients of its Excellence in Journalism Awards for work produced in 2017.

The NLGJA Journalist of the Year honor was awarded to celebrated reporter Ronan Farrow, whose articles in The New Yorker magazine are credited with helping to uncover the Harvey Weinstein sexual allegations. The Sarah Pettit Memorial Award for the LGBTQ Journalist of the Year was awarded to Diane Anderson-Minshall, editor-at-large of The Advocate and editor-in-chief of HIV Plus Magazine.

Diane Anderson-Minshall
"I am blown away by the work that was created in 2017," said NLGJA President Jen Christensen. "While it was difficult to select winners from such a talented pool of submissions, I am so proud that our panel of judges has recognized these award winners. These recipients have set the bar for coverage of our community and have given me hope for increasingly terrific LGBTQ coverage in the years to come."

NLGJA’s Excellence in Journalism Awards were established in 1993 to foster, recognize and reward excellence in journalism on issues related to the LGBTQ community. In recent years, the program was expanded to over 30 categories and this year included the creation of awards for Excellence in Food Writing, Excellence in Queer People of Color (QPOC) Coverage and Excellence in Longform Journalism.

The awards will be presented throughout the NLGJA National Convention to be held September 6-9 in Palm Springs, Calif.

Regarding Farrow, one judge said, “I can think of no other journalist who had a bigger impact this year
Ronan Farrow
than Ronan Farrow. [He inspired] countless women and men to speak out against the predators who, for far too long, have been in great positions of power. Seeing the impact of his work, work that was not even welcome initially at his first media outlet, he continued to pursue the story, even at some risk to himself. In addition to the impact, the work is incredibly well-written, researched and reported, and he deserves recognition.”

On Anderson-Minshall’s work, another judge said, “Great interviews, wonderful depth, elegant writing and incredible when you know that Diane also runs the show for The Advocate. I don't know how she does it all.”

Another high-profile honor, the Al Neuharth Award for Innovation in Investigative Journalism, went to Ken Schwencke for “Why America Fails at Gathering Hate Crime Statistics," for ProPublica and the Documenting Hate Coalition.

For more information about NLGJA’s upcoming convention, go to www.nlgja.org/2018.

The rest of the 2018 NLGJA Excellence in Journalism Awards — including those honoring LGBTQ media — are listed below.

Print/Online Awards:

Excellence in Book Writing Award
Judy Wieder for “Random Events Tend To Cluster," Lisa Hagan Books

Excellence in Feature Writing Award

Excellence in Feature Writing Award (Non-daily)
Alex Mohajer for “A Tale of Two Marches," HuffPost

Excellence in Food Writing Award

Excellence in Longform Journalism Award

Excellence in News Writing Award
Jen Colletta for “Lesbian Couple Turned Away From PA Bridal Shop," Philadelphia Gay News

Excellence in News Writing Award (Non-daily)

Excellence in Photojournalism Award
Carolyn Van Houten for “Life in Transition," San Antonio Express-News

Excellence in Profile Writing Award

Excellence in Sports Writing Award

Excellence in Student Journalism Award

Excellence in Travel Writing Award

Digital Awards:

Excellence in Blogging Award
Josh Robbins for “Fauci: From a Practical Standpoint the Risk is Zero," ImStillJosh.com

Excellence in Digital Video Award
Roman Feeser, Alex Romano, Angelica Fusco, Nia Stevens and Luisa Garcia for “Uncharted: State of Mind," CBS News

Excellence in Multimedia Award

Excellence in Online Journalism Award

Editorial Awards:

Excellence in Column Writing Award
Lucas Grindley for “LGBTs to America: 'We Told You So'," The Advocate

Excellence in Opinion/Editorial Writing Award

Broadcast Awards:

Excellence in Documentary Award
Nick Broomfield and Marc Hoeferlin for “Whitney: Can I Be Me," Showtime and BBC

Excellence in Local Television Award
Peggy Kusinski, Katy Smyser, Lisa Capitanini, Richard Moy, Julio Martinez and Nathan Halder for “Some Local Rules Keep Transgender Athletes From Competing In High Schools," NBC5 Chicago

Excellence in Network Television Award
Todd Cross and Gabe Gutierrez for “One Year After Pulse Nightclub Shooting, 4 People Reflect on How Their Lives Changed," Sunday TODAY with Willie Geist/NBC

Excellence in Podcast Award
Jacob Brogan and Benjamin Frisch for “Working," Slate

Excellence in Radio Award
Natalie Winston, Gabriela Saldivia and David Greene for “'They Told Me I Wasn't A Human Being': Gay Men Speak Of Brutal Treatment In Chechnya," National Public Radio

Coverage Awards:

Excellence in Bisexual Coverage Award

Excellence in Health or Fitness Coverage Award
Aliyah Musaliar, Isabella Ortiz, Noel Gasca and Jenny Asarnow for “Why Was I Taught Sex Ed by a Man Who Uses the Word 'Slut'?" KUOW Puget Sound Public Radio

Excellence in HIV/AIDS Coverage Award
Linda Villarosa for “America's Hidden HIV Epidemic," The New York Times Magazine 

Excellence in Queer People of Color (QPOC) Coverage Award
Margie Fishman for “A Child's Journey to 'Truegender'," The News Journal/USA Today

Excellence in Religion Coverage Award
Phoebe Wang for “God + The Gays," The Heart (Radiotopia)

Excellence in Transgender Coverage Award
Ryan Kost for “Finding Himself," The San Francisco Chronicle

Volume 20
Issue 4

Michigan newspaper graphically revisits 25 years

by Fred Kuhr

To celebrate Between The Lines’ silver anniversary, the Livonia, Mich.-based newspaper plans on revisiting milestones from the Detroit area’s LGBT history.

From June 2018 to June 2019, the newspaper will release regular historical graphics that take a look at some of the LGBTQ community’s greatest triumphs as well as some of the biggest bumps we’ve encountered on the road to equality, according to the newspaper in its June 7, 2018, issue.

This emphasis on examining our past is in keeping with Between The Lines’ primary goal — increasing LGBTQ visibility. According to Co-Publisher Susan Horowitz, being visible in the public eye is one of the most effective ways to fight LGBTQ discrimination.

“All press, all news as the great, late Philip Graham of the Washington Post said, ‘is the first draft of history,’ and we knew very early on that our history was being lost by not being documented and recorded,” Horowitz said. “It was then that people went back, historians devoted themselves to LGBTQ history, and writers wrote books, and filmmakers made film and newspaper activists found their way to producing LGBTQ newspapers. And what the LGBTQ local newspapers do around the country is to continue to document the local community and what our challenges are, our success and our future may look like.”

According to Horowitz, Southeast Michigan provides no dearth of stories and content. “I mean we’ve published 35,000-plus articles. That’s an enormous number, that’s the equivalent of about 400 full-length books, documenting primarily Southeast Michigan and the state when we could and there wasn’t anyone out there that was going to do it,” she said. “We had to make that conscious decision, and what shifted so radically is the level of support from the allied communities both in advertising and in fighting the good fight with us. That’s been the huge shift that I’ve seen and am still seeing during my time at Between The Lines.”

In its first graphic travelling down memory lane, the newspaper revisits the year 1993, highlighting a number of stories including a printing company that refused to print the paper on moral grounds, the inaugural Southeast Michigan Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, and the March on Washington that year.

Volume 20
Issue 4

PRESSING QUESTIONS: Empty Closet of Rochester, N.Y.

Interview with: Editor Rowan Collins (also Communications Director of Out Alliance)
by Joe Siegel

Geographic coverage area: Rochester and surrounding counties, extending into Central and Western New York

Year founded: January 1971

Staff size and breakdown: (writers, editors, designers, etc.): Two, myself as editor and main writer, and a designer. Other contributors are volunteers.

Physical dimensions of publication: 8.5” x 11” magazine print

Average page count: 40

Print run: 6,000-plus, 11 issues per year

Web site: outalliance.org/emptycloset


PPQ: What feature or features of Empty Closet have been the most popular with readers?

Editor Rowan Collins: The publication has changed fairly dramatically over the last year but our readers have always enjoyed local stories, whether they are interviews or profiles or breaking news that is deeply impactful on our local community.

PPQ: Who came up with the name and what is the inspiration for it?

Collins: Early members of the Rochester Gay Liberation Front — which would become the Gay Alliance, now Out Alliance — created the Empty Closet as an RGLF newsletter in 1971. R.J. Alcala is credited with the suggestion of “Empty Closet,” which the group adopted, in the 2013 documentary “Shoulders to Stand On.”

PPQ: What challenge has your publication had to overcome since its inception?

Collins: Since it was initially published in 1971, the Empty Closet has faced numerous obstacles and challenges. Funding, resources, and social animus were some of the initial challenges — as issues were not accepted in many public institutions or businesses.

PPQ: What challenge or challenges is Empty Closet facing now?

Collins: Funding has kept the Empty Closet as a one-to-two person operation for decades now. Our previous editor, the illustrious Susan Jordan, served as the sole staff from 1989-2017 with a contracted designer. I follow in the same model. We don’t have active beat reporters or department writers or staff photographers or columnists on a payroll. It makes it difficult to catch all the stories and cover all the events and people in our vibrant, diverse community.

PPQ: How has Empty Closet changed since it was first launched?

Collins: As the oldest LGBTQ publication in New York and one of the oldest, continuously published LGBTQ publications in the country, the Empty Closet has changed immensely. We began in January 1971 as a four-page ditto and have transformed over the years into a 40-page newspaper and now magazine. Coverage, inclusion, diversity of contributors, stories, political landscapes, and editorship has changed tremendously and will continue to change for decades to come.

PPQ: What one change would you like to make?

Collins: I’d love to be able to bring writers and photographers on as staff. We have immense talent in our area and community contributors with incredible ideas, drive, and passion for telling the stories that matter. As a publication housed in a small non-profit organization, we simply don’t have funding to expand our staff.

PPQ: What has been the biggest news story or stories Empty Closet has covered?

Collins: I think it would be reductive to say any one story was the biggest, considering this publication’s 47-year history. We have covered the de-pathologizing of homosexuality, the AIDS crisis, national elections, local firsts, marriage equality, Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, transgender healthcare, intersectional justice, art, and so many other stories.

PPQ: On the Kinsey Scale of 0-6 (exclusively straight to totally gay), how gay is your publication?

Collins: Our publication aims to include and amplify the voices of our entire community, which is not exclusively 6s, so to speak. We have contributors from, and stories regarding, the trans and gender-expansive community, bisexual folks, gay, lesbian, pansexual, and queer identified people.

PPQ: Do you see yourself as an “activist journalist”? If so, in what way?

Collins: I think there is a certain extent to which, as a publication by and for a specific marginalized community, most of what our publication has done in the last 47 years could be considered advocacy journalism. We have told the stories of people that mainstream media would either like to forget, refuse to cover accurately out of fear, ignorance, or both, or exploit for views.

PPQ: What's the most surprising feedback you've received from a reader?

Collins: I recently had an LGBTQ high school student say that they read copies of the Empty Closet at their local library, gathering the courage to come out to their parents. They said that knowing there was a strong, vibrant, and supportive community right here in Rochester made it so much easier to have the conversation and that they asked their parents to subscribe when they came out, so they could all read it together.

PPQ: What advice would you give to anyone who may want to launch their own GLBT publication?

Collins: Know your market. We are lucky in some respects at the Empty Closet to have such a strong, stable history as the LGBTQ publication for Rochester and much of Western New York. We know our readership and we know our area. The stories and editorials flow from there.

Volume 20
Issue 4