Every year, San Diego Pride accepts nominations from the community for the annual presentation of the Spirit of Stonewall Awards. The awards recognize individuals or groups who contribute significantly to the LGBT community through their leadership, activism, and fundraising efforts.

San Diego Pride is proud to present our 2023 awardees:

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Christynne Lili Wrene Wood

Champion of Pride

Christynne Lili Wrene Wood

Christynne Lili Wrene Wood, a proud advocate and community leader, is dedicated to promoting diversity, inclusion, and civil rights, and has received prestigious awards for her impactful work in making “good trouble.”


Community Grand Marshal

Drag Community

The drag community has long been the joy bringers and protectors within the Queer Community, from the roots of the Queer Liberation movement to the historic Drag Balls. With drag artists at the forefront, such as Marsha P Johnson and William Dorsey Swann, they have played a vital role in the fight for queer liberation.

Dr Carlton Thomas

Hero of Pride

Dr. Carlton Thomas

Dr. Carlton Thomas, a Mayo Clinic trained gastroenterologist based in San Diego, is a passionate advocate for queer health and sex education. Through his popular Instagram and TikTok platform as @DoctorCarlton, he provided crucial information and support during the MPOX outbreak, collaborated with the CDC, organized vaccine clinics worldwide, and received recognition from prestigious publications and the White House. With plans to expand his platform, he aims to continue his impactful work as the “Gay Doctor Ruth” and promote queer health awareness.

TransFamily Support Services NEW Logo (3)

Spirit of Stonewall Service Award

TransFamily Support Services

TransFamily Support Services (TFSS) is a San Diego-based nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a gender affirming community and saving lives. Through education, support, resources, and advocacy, TFSS empowers transgender and nonbinary youth and their families, impacting the lives of thousands across the United States. With a significant presence in California and a chapter in Alabama, TFSS continues to expand its reach to provide crucial support to transgender individuals in the South.

Lindsey Deaton red carpet headshot

Larry T. Baza Arts & Culture Award

Lindsey Deaton

Lindsey Deaton is a renowned maker, artistic director, public servant, and passionate advocate for transgender and LGBTQIA+ youth. As the founder of the San Diego Queer Youth Chorus and the artistic director of transformative theater projects, including The TransVagina Diaries and The Church of Trans Love, Lindsey has been a driving force in the global trans choral movement. With accolades such as being appointed as the first transgender Commissioner for the City of West Hollywood and receiving prestigious grants, Lindsey’s groundbreaking work has garnered recognition from national media outlets and community organizations. Residing in Chula Vista with her wife and family, Lindsey continues to inspire and amplify essential voices in the community.


Spirit of Stonewall Philanthropy Award

Blenders Eyewear

Blenders celebrates the LGBTQ+ community with their vibrant and fashion-forward ‘Pride’ sunglasses, donating 100% of profits to LGBTQ+ organizations. With over $50K donated since 2021, Blenders embraces individuality while supporting unity and inclusivity.

Naya Marie Velazco Headshot

Spirit of Stonewall Community Service Award

Naya Marie Velazco

Naya Marie Velazco (she/her/ella) is a passionate transgender advocate and Director of Programs at the Transgender Health & Wellness Center. With a wealth of experience in social services, HIV prevention, and harm reduction, she has dedicated her career to improving the lives of vulnerable populations, leading impactful initiatives, and fostering community engagement. Currently, Naya is driving transformative research projects and amplifying the voices of gender minorities to ensure comprehensive access to healthcare and support services.

Judith Vaughs Photo

Friend of Pride Award

Judith Vaughs

Judith (Judy) Vaughs (she/her/hers) is a dedicated community organizer and Public Affairs Manager at Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest. With a strong focus on LGBTQ+ rights and reproductive justice, she has partnered with prominent organizations like San Diego Pride, Human Rights Campaign, and Equality California. Judy’s impactful work includes campaigns that promote and expand reproductive justice policies at the local level.

2023 Newsletter IG

Light of Pride Award

Temple Emanu-El

Temple Emanu-El, a Reform synagogue, has shown years of unwavering support of the San Diego LGBTQ Community; as a synagogue, they embrace diversity, welcome all, and stand as a powerful voice against hate.