Esteem Awards 2018

Come join us in support of the annual celebration of honor to be presented Saturday June 30!

Since 2007, PrideIndex.com's Esteem Awards has honored local and national organizations and individuals for their continued efforts in supporting the African-American and LGBT communities in the areas of entertainment, media, civil rights, business and art.

This year’s cocktail reception will take place in Chicago on Saturday June 30 at Sidetrack 3349 N. Halsted from 1PM-4PM. The event is free and open to the public.

Esteem Awards Finalists

These honorees were selected by a committee of past honorees who reviewed an array of nominations.

Chicago Finalists

Lamont Robinson, Jr.

Outstanding Service, Male

Lamont Robinson, Jr.
Business Owner
Mr. Robinson made history as the first openly gay African-American person to win a primary for the Illinois General Assembly. He’s currently running for the 5th Congressional District.
Maria Hadden

Outstanding Service, Female

Maria Hadden
Social Activist
Maria Hadden, Social Activist. Ms. Hadden is currently the Executive Director of Our City Our Voice, a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to support civic engagement processes.
Vanessa Sheridan

Outstanding Service, Transgender

Vanessa Sheridan
Author and Advocate
Sheridan is the Director of Transgender Relations and Community Engagement at The Center on Halsted.
Derrick Clifton

Future Leaders / Outstanding Millennial Award

Derrick Clifton
Journalist and Communications Consultant
His work has appeared in many publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Windy City Times.
National LGBTQ Task Force

Outstanding Social Services/CBO

The National LGBTQ Task Force
The uncompromising voice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer freedom, justice and equality for over 40 years.
Reeling

Special Recognition Award

Reeling The Chicago LGBT Film Fest
The second-oldest festival of its kind in the world, Reeling showcases a variety of LGBTQ+ films, including both features and shorts.
The Sip

Outstanding Podcast/Internet Based Video or Audio Show

The Sip
The Sip unites three gay black men from diverse occupations and life journeys to embark on a quest to discover and report on everything from world headline news to pop culture; all from a Black LGBTQ perspective.
eta Creative Arts Foundation

Artistic Expression

eta Creative Arts Foundation
eta Creative Arts Foundation was created to provide training and performance opportunities for youth and adults. In the past 47 years, eta has evolved to become a recognized cultural treasure not only in the city of Chicago, but nationally and internationally.

National Finalists

Dr. Eric Prichard

Outstanding Service, Male

Dr. Eric Prichard
Author
Eric Darnell Pritchard is an assistant professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He writes and teaches about literacy, rhetoric and their intersections with fashion, beauty, popular culture, identity, and power.
Wilhemenia Perry

Outstanding Service, Female

Dr. Wilhemenia Perry
Activist
Perry is the Cofounder of LGBT Faith Leaders of African Descent, and has worked with other churches to provide space for homeless LGBTQ young people.
Christina Kahrl

Outstanding Service, Transgender

Christina Kahrl
Writer and Activist
Ms. Karhl is currently writing and editing for ESPN.com. She is an avid activist on civil rights issues for the transgender community.
D'Ontace Keyes

Future Leaders/Outstanding Millennial Award

D'Ontace Keyes
Artist and Philanthropist
Mr. Keyes is currently the content producer for Mobilizing Our Brothers Initiative (MOBI), where he works to promote health and wellness in Black gay and transgender communities.
National LGBTQ Task Force

Outstanding Social Services/CBO

The National LGBTQ Task Force
The uncompromising voice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer freedom, justice and equality for over 40 years.
ONE

Institutional Award

ONE Archive Foundation and the National Gay & Lesbian Archives
The archive, which is located at the USC Libraries, is the largest repository of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) materials in the world.
My True Colours Festival

Artistic Expression

My True Colours Festival
Their mission is to fight for social justice and to promote cultural diversity through the arts by promoting works by and for LGBTQIA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex and asexual) individuals and persons of color.
Jessica Holter

Artistic Expression Spoken Word

Jessica Holter
Orator and Activist
Jessica Holter is best known as founder of The Punany Poets. She created the group in 1995 after the untimely death of Eric “Eazy‐E” Wright of AIDS. Her theater group, The Punany Poets, has appeared on HBO's Real Sex, Black Entertainment Television, Playboy TV, London's Channel 5 and Cinemax.
Brown Girls

Outstanding Web Series

Brown Girls
An American comedy web series created by Fatimah Asgher and Sam Bailey it follows two friends, Leila and Patricia, who pursue their dreams in Chicago. Two women of color, a queer Pakistani-American writer and an African-American musician, lean on each other to get through the difficulties of their mid-twenties.
Gerren Keith Gaynor

Outstanding Newspaper/ New Website Reporter/Columnist

Gerren Keith Gaynor
Journalist
Gaynor is currently Homepage Editor at Fox News digital. He is formerly the Homepage/Opinion Editor and Digital Host for theGrio.com. He has been published in the New York Times, ESSENCE magazine, EBONY.com, and other publications.