In my office hangs a copy of the first Pride budget. We had a deficit of one dollar. I love having that piece of history hanging next to me as I work every day. It reminds me of the legacy gifted to us by the pioneers of our movement – those early struggles and successes of our community as it fought legal oppression, societal norms, and too often internally. Yet, as our community does, we persisted and grew stronger as community members like Christine Kehoe, Neil Good, Tim Williams, Barbra Blake, Joseph Mayer, and others worked to professionalize our organization, stabilize us financially, and eventually distribute profits from our event to LGBTQ-serving organizations.
Today, Pride is the largest single-day civic event in the region with an annual economic impact of around 26.6 million dollars. We run year-round education and advocacy programs and have become one of the most philanthropic Prides in the world. Since 1994, we have distributed nearly 2.5 million dollars to LGBTQ-serving nonprofits.
It’s heartwarming to know that when folks invest their time to volunteer with Pride or that when you purchase a ticket those actions have a ripple effect that extends beyond one weekend a year. They are investments in our community and the legacy that we leave to those who will come after us. Thank you for being a part of that legacy with us, as together we Persist with Pride.
Grant applications can be found here.