Charlotte’s Creative Loafing has released their Best of Charlotte 2011. Several LGBT businesses, a community leader and others of interest got top pick by both critics and readers alike.

Roberta Dunn, who sits on the MeckPAC steering committee and board of directors for The LGBT Community Center of Charlotte, won critics’ pick for Best Activist.

“She’s only been in Charlotte for six years — and only politically and socially outspoken for about two and a half — but this LGBT activist knows how to get things done. (And she’s not afraid to use her famous chocolate chip cookies to get her way.),” writes CL. “Before the Democratic National Convention descends on Charlotte, she hopes to convince our local governments to provide domestic-partner benefits and to institute anti-discrimination regulations to protect transgender employees.”

Both CL and their readers weighed in on anti-gay Mecklenburg County Commissioner Bill James. Readers named him both “local zero” and “worst member of local government,” a designation CL staff also chose for the often outspoken politician.

“It gets old giving James this award, and it’s not as if there aren’t other strong contenders, but this was a particularly rancid year for Bill. He wasn’t content to garner national publicity for denouncing all gays as “sexual predators” (which he called “good press for Charlotte”), or get into a public fight with a local gay newspaper about “predators” in the parks,” CL writes. “The self-described Christian also supported “forcing” CMS to privatize more services, but only if the private companies don’t have to offer pensions or benefits. His weirdest mental spasm came when he unleashed a graphic description of what should have been done with bin Laden’s body: Put it on display in the U.S., let Americans pee and crap on it, after which it would be eaten by pigs. Calling Dr. Freud — someone’s id was working overtime this year!”

In other “Best of” categories…

In arts and entertainment… Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte won staff pick for best local theatre company. Pride Charlotte featured entertainers Eyes of the Elders won staff pick best local rapper. Pride Charlotte emcee Big Mamma D won readers’ pick for best local female vocalist.

In nightlife… Marigny Dance Club won readers’ pick for best new nightspot and staff pick for best gay/lesbian bar. Petra’s won readers’ pick for best gay/lesbian bar. Roxy C. Moorecox won best drag entertainer.

In retail… Paper Skyscraper won readers’ pick fo rbest place to find a present for someone.

View Creative Loafing‘s entire “Best of Charlotte” feature online and in print this week… and for a slightly different take on Carolina’s LGBT “Best of” be sure to check out our 2011 QList, published just a few weeks ago in July.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.

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