QList—Best of LGBT Charlotte 2014

Readers cast their ballots for the best of Charlotte’s LGBT community

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toy_2Best Non-Profit Organization
Time Out Youth
For more than 20 years, Time Out Youth has served as a much-needed resource for Charlotte’s LGBT young people. Over the past several years, Time Out Youth, its board and its staff have taken new, strategic steps to grow the organization. Last fall, the group moved into larger space, offering young people a business center, counseling space, a youth lounge, kitchen and more. These accomplishments have been noticed by the community and our readers.

Best Support/Social Group
PRISM
Begun as an outgrowth of Time Out Youth, PRISM serves those young people 18 and over who are or have aged out of Time Out Youth’s programming, offering them spaces to socialize, receive support and make new friends. PRISM is a relative newcomer on the block when it comes to local support and social groups, but its young adult leaders are making a difference and getting involved in LGBT community work across the city.

Best AIDS Service Organization
Regional AIDS Interfaith Network (RAIN)
For more than 20 years, the Regional AIDS Interfaith Network has worked as a shining example of what can happen when people of all faiths and backgrounds come together to make a difference for those in need. Led by the Rev. Debbie Warren, RAIN has pushed the conversation on AIDS and HIV to new levels in the Queen City. RAIN offers direct client support, works with community organizations and faith institutions and offers programs to sustain a caring support network for those living with and affected by HIV.

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leeziglar_2Best Young Adult Leader
Lee Ziglar
At 21 years old, Lee Ziglar has jumped right into leadership positions in Charlotte’s LGBT community. As a senior at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, he has led the campus’ LGBT student organization. He was recently elected as the youngest-ever board member of the Charlotte Business Guild, where he serves as secretary. At the Guild, Lee also assists with the group’s Aspiring Professionals Initiative, and he has taken a leading role in networking with a variety of other local organizations across the city. Voters in the QList this year obviously took notice of Lee’s current and still up-and-coming leadership skills, naming him this year’s Best LGBT Young Adult Leader

joshuaburfordBest LGBT Leader
Joshua Burford
Living in Charlotte since 2012, Joshua Burford has wasted no time jumping into the local leadership mix. At work, he’s the assistant director for sexual and gender diversity at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte’s Multicultural Resource Center. There, he works to provide programs and services to LGBT and other students, including working as an advisor to the campus’ LGBT student organization. Away from work, Joshua has been a supporter of a wide range of local organizations as he networks and builds support for the new Charlotte LGBTQ Community Archive. He’s made it his personal mission to collect as many stories of Charlotte’s local LGBT history as possible. All of them are housed at the UNC-Charlotte J. Murray Atkins Library Special Collections. And, this month, he will work with staffers at the Levine Museum of the New South to open the city’s first-ever LGBT history exhibit, including the a local history timeline, the first local LGBT history exhibit from the Charlotte LGBTQ Community Archive.

Best LGBT Leader & Best Transgender Community Leader
Janice Covington
Voters had a clear favorite this year in Janice Covington, one of the city’s leading voices for equality in political and social circles. Janice has been a tireless advocate for transgender equality and equality for all people. In 2012, she was elected the first-ever transgender delegate from North Carolina to the Democratic National Convention held in Charlotte that year. Since, she has become increasingly involved in a variety of leadership roles within the local and state Democratic parties, including working to help found the local LGBT Democrats of Mecklenburg County.

lawanamayfieldBest Openly LGBT/Friendly Politician/Elected Official
The Hon. LaWana Mayfield, Charlotte City Council District 3
City Councilmember LaWana Mayfield continues to impress local citizens with her leadership skills, public service and social justice advocacy. Elected in 2011, Mayfield was re-elected to her position in 2013. As the first openly LGBT official elected in the city, she has worked to provide a voice for LGBT citizens and residents, as well as other work uplifting other communities in need of support. In recent years, Mayfield as worked to “ban the box,” working to implement changes that would change city employment forms, take off questions about past crimes and allow all people more fair opportunities for government employment.

Best Annual LGBT Event
Charlotte Pride
Honorable Mention: Charlotte Black Gay Pride
No big city is complete without plenty of Pride, and Charlotte’s local LGBT Pride event is making its mark like never before. Charlotte Pride has seen a reorganization over the past couple years, resurrected Charlotte’s annual LGBT Pride parade, expanded its festival size and grown tremendously year after year. Voters in the QList have taken notice and honored Charlotte Pride with Best Annual LGBT Event. Runner up and honorable mention is Charlotte Black Gay Pride, which also received a sizable vote in this year’s ballot submissions.

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Best LGBT Arts Group
One Voice Chorus
For more than 30 years, the men and women of One Voice Chorus have lifted their voices in unity, harmony, strength and pride. Their three decades have brought about joy and belonging to the many who have joined their choral ranks and those who have heard them in action. With popular shows like “Hollywood Squares,” their inspiring “HOME” concert benefiting Time Out Youth and others, One Voice has won the hearts of voters this year.

Best LGBT-Affirming Faith Institution
Holy Covenant United Church of Christ
Metropolitan Community Church of Charlotte
(TIE)
For the second year, Holy Covenant United Church of Christ takes its place among voters’ favorites for Best LGBT-Affirming Faith Institution. They’re joined this year by the Metropolitan Community Church of Charlotte, a long-serving spiritual home of LGBT welcome and affirmation and last year’s honorable mention. Holy Covenant, its pastor Nancy Allison and some congregants, as well as the national General Synod of the United Church of Christ are plaintiffs in one of the state’s most recent lawsuits challenging the anti-LGBT constitutional amendment.

Best Man About Town
Dan Mauney
The ever-popular Dan Mauney just doesn’t know when to quit! He’s like the Energizer Bunny, with hands in a variety of causes, businesses and organizations. As a new business owner, Dan’s SHU and BRIEF are taking shape as popular shopping destinations where he has also hosted several community events. Takeover Friday, of which Dan is a co-founder, also continues to be a popular, regular event for Charlotte’s LGBT social crowd.

janicecovingtonBest Woman About Town
Janice Covington

Best LGBT Bar/Club
The Bar at 316

Best LGBT-Friendly Bar/Club
Snug Harbor

Bar/Club with Best Drink Value
The Bar at 316
L4 Lounge
(TIE)

Club/Bar with Hottest Bar Staff
Cathode Azure

Bar/Club with Best Drag Show
The Scorpio

Best Local DJ
DJ Little Betty

Best Local Drag Performer
Roxy C. Moorecox

Best LGBT-Friendly, Locally-Owned Restaurant
DISH

Best LGBT-Friendly, Locally-Owned Retail Store
White Rabbit

Best LGBT-Friendly, Locally-Owned Coffee Shop
Central Coffee Co.

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