This Rainbow Fashion Week kick-off event honored 50 LGBTQ and straight ally professionals who have already made their mark in their respective industries. Whether the new media moguls were in the fields of beauty, entertainment, fashion, media, music, philanthropy, technology, or television, they all have made meaningful contributions, and the recognition was well deserved.
The red carpet soirée took place Friday at the All White Space (587 10th Ave.) in Hell’s Kitchen, and included complimentary hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. The event was at capacity and was a who’s who of New York Pride celebrators.
The 50 Top New Media Moguls headlining honorees were VH1’s “Love & Hip Hop” castmember Tahiry Jose (Community Empowerment), National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce New York Diversity Outreach Chair Ingrid Galvez (Brenda Howard Trailblazer), True Fashionista Now founder Tyrone Farley (Community Empowerment), iSeeGayPeople.tv creator Toyce Francis (Gilbert Baker Legacy), and famed performance artist Amanda Lepore (Gilbert Baker Legacy).
Other guests included Brenda Howard Trailblazer honorees:
· Gary Cosgrove: President and board member, Imperial Court of New York, Inc.
· James DeMarco: Emmy Award-winning makeup artist and beauty expert
· Joe Mode: Producer and NYC promoter
· Nathan H. Williams, Esq. – President & Executive Producer, iN-Hale Entertainment
· Richard Pryor, Jr.: Entertainer
· Vivian Billings: TV personality and radio host
· Yamil X (Rosario): Legendary NYC club promoter
Community Empowerment honorees:
· AD the General: CEO, Elegant Hoodness Magazine
· Aliya Hallim-Byne: Founder & CEO, Wonder Women
· Andrew Werner: Photographer
· B. Hawk Snipes: Stylist & Editor, Pinned x Stitched
· Benjamin Sherman: Founder, Say it With a Condom
· Bettina Gold Wilkerson: Writer, performance artist, and poet
· Brian Anthony Hernandez: Entertainment Editor, Mashable
· Cloe Luv: CEO, Brook Brovaz Music Production & The Medium Advisors
· Fabian Burrell: LGBT advocate
· Gbassa D’Acosta: Executive Producer, “Ride with Me TV” My9 Network
· Jonathan Valdez: Editor-in-Chief, Orange Juice and Biscuits
· Jose Colon: Philanthropist and NYC promoter
· Kaz Mitchell “NY Kaz”: Director, Circle of Voices, Inc.
· Richard Pelzer, II & Ulysses Williams: President & Vice President of Operations, Global Network of Black Pride
· Shay Star: Radio and TV personality, WOCQ-FM OC 104 and ABC 47
· Troy Turner: Business Owner and celebrity hairstylist
· Yetta Kurland: LGBTQ Civil Rights attorney
Others in attendance included motivational speaker and spokesmodel Evette Holyfield, Greater Cleveland Urban Film Festival founder Alton Tinker, and celebrity stylist Eric “E-Stylz” Santiago.
Rainbow Fashion Week was founded in 2013 by designer and entertainment professional E. Jaguar Beckford. All proceeds from the 50 Top New Media Moguls event benefited LGBTQ organizations, and each RBW event has a social purpose. For the full list of Rainbow Fashion Week events, visit www.rainbowfashionweek.com.