Nomination deadline approaching
CHARLOTTE — Know a local community leader or organization that you feel deserves recognition? If so, be sure to get your nominations in by July 31 for the 2009 Charlotte Business Guild/Don King Community Service Awards.

Awards will be presented to a male, a female, a business and the Bridge Builder Award given to a straight ally, based on nominations submitted to and reviewed by the Guild’s board of directors. The award is to acknowledge the service and commitment to community and individual visibility shown consistently by Don King over the years. The Guild sponsors and manages the annual award. Nominees should have contributed five or more years to projects in the community.

Nominations should include a narrative explaining why you think this person or business is a worthy candidate and examples of some of the work this person or business has performed in service to the Charlotte LGBT community. Submit via U.S. mail to Business Guild Board Member Renae Elam, P.O. Box 222131, Charlotte, NC 28222 or email

Nominations are due by July 31, 2009.

Awards will be presented at the Sept.15 meeting at the Carolina Ballroom at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 201 S. McDowell St.

To make a nomination or to request a form, call 704-565-5075 or email
For more information, visit

Oh, what a face!
CHARLOTTE — Word on the streets is that Shelita Hamm, the dynamo behind Gay BINGO, has taken to the web. According to Hamm, she has joined Facebook and says that it’s a way for her to stay in contact with the community. She will also use her page to keep folks informed about Gay BINGO.

To add Miss Shelita to your friends list, go to the search field and enter Shelita Hamm. Voila, there she’ll be and you can ask to be friends. Oh, isn’t that grand?

For more information, visit

PFLAG awards scholarships
SALISBURY — Three $1,000 2009-2010 academic year scholarships were presented by Salisbury/Rowan PFLAG to three undisclosed recipients according to the Salisbury Post. They were the first organization to do so exclusively for LGBT students and/or straight allies.

The awards are given to LGBT and straight ally seniors. The Linda Ketner Community Service Scholarship, named for native Salisbury Ketner; The Founder’s Equality Scholarship, named for PFLAG chapter founder Michael Clawson; and The Anne Stanback-Charlotte Kinlock Scholarship, named for another native Ann Stanback and her wife, were established in 2008.

For more information, call 704-232-4916 or email


Jones on radar for board post
WINSTON-SALEM — Randy Jones, a North Carolina native who became famous as a member of the 1970s hit music group Village People, has been tapped to join the Board of Visitors of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA), announced Board of Visitors Chairman Jackson D. “J.D.” Wilson Jr. of Winston-Salem. Jones is an alumnus of the school and a recipient of a 2008 UNCSA Alumni Achievement Award.

For more information, visit


Get the skinny…
DURHAM — PFLAG Triangle, as part of their Community Outreach Program, will present an information and dialogue on Legal Issues for the LGBT Community on Aug. 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 4907 Garrett Rd.

This interactive presentation will feature information on North Carolina and federal laws affecting LGBT people and their families surrounding partnerships and estate planning. A Q&A with local Triangle attorneys will follow. Light refreshments will be served.

Join us for information and dialogue on North Carolina and Federal laws affecting LGBT people and their families surrounding partnerships and estate planning. This will be an interactive presentation with the opportunity for Q&A with local Triangle attorneys. Light refreshments will follow.

For more information, email

Lights, camera, action
DURHAM — The 14th Annual Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (NCGLFF) will be held Aug. 13-16 at the Carolina Theatre, 309 W. Morgan St.

The festival is the second largest gay and lesbian film festival in the Southeast, attracting thousands of patrons yearly. Since its beginning in 1995, the Festival has featured a diverse array of shorts, documentaries and feature films. The Durham Convention and Visitors Bureau named the NCGLFF a Signature Event for Durham, the highest honor bestowed on a cultural event or attraction by the organization.

Film included are “Ain’t Nothin’ Dirty Goin’ On,” “The Amazing Truth About Queen Raquela,” “And Then Came Lola,” “The Art of Being Straight,” “The Baby Formula,” “Chef’s Special,” “Chico’s Angels,” “Drool,” “Ferron: Girl on a Road,” “For My Wife,” “Girl Seeks Girl: Part 1,” “Girl Seeks Girl: Part 2,” “Hanna Free,” “Hollywood, je t’aime,” “I Can’t Think Straight,” “Keep Me from the Noise and Light,” “Little Ashes,” “Make the Yuletide Gay,” “Misconceptions,” “Mr. Right,” “On the Edge of Happiness,” “Patrik, Age 1.5,” “Prodigal Sons,” “ “Quieter Than the World Tonight,” “Redwood,” “ “Shank,” “So Romantic, So Bewildering,” “There’ll Still Be Rain,” “Those Sparkling Devils,” “ Training Rules” and “You Know I Love the Ladies.”

On Aug. 13, LOL at the comedy of Carolina Rhea, Rue McClanahan and Del Shores at 8 p.m. at Fletcher Hall. Tickets range from $32-39. A special VIP meet and greet may be procured for $80.

Sponsors are Accent Hardwood Flooring, American AV, American Express, Ameriprise Financial, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, Duke Tower Condominiums, Haas McNeil & Associates, P.A., Modern Gentle Dentistry, Huckabay-Kline, LLC, Independent Weekly, Q-Notes, Replacements, Ltd., ReVamp: Creative Durham Development, Revolution, Thomas Englund Clocksmith, Tony Hall & Associates, Triangle Financial Advisors, LLC, Whitehall At The Villa and Whole Foods Market.

Volunteers are still needed. Check the online form to lend a hand.

For tickets, directions, film descriptions, times or more information, call 919-560-3030 or visit


Workshop proposals sought
GREENSBORO — The 2009 Equality Conference & Gala slated for Nov. 14 is seeking seeking proposals for workshops that educate participants on key issues or teach important skills for advancing an agenda of equality and justice. It is produced by Equality NC Foundation (ENCF). They specifically encourage presenters from communities that have been historically under-represented including, but not limited to, persons of color, bisexuals, physically challenged persons, veterans, transgender persons, intersex persons, allies, students and senior members of the community. ENCF encourages workshop proposals that focus on today’s hot topics, as well as proven workshops that challenge and enlighten newcomers to LGBT advocacy, policy and politics.

Deadline for submission is July 31. Notification regarding selection will begin Aug. 7.

The Foundation strongly encourages proposals that have a significant interactive element and encourage sharing the wisdom of the participants.

Topic development guidance will be available.

Presenters will receive complementary registration to the conference and are invited to purchase admission to the evening gala at a discounted rate.

Guidelines include, and not limited to, presentations facilitated in either a workshop or panel format targeted to a broad audience or specific constituencies, be they new or more experienced. Content must be connected to policy issues affecting the LGBT community or skills-building for effectively creating change in N.C. communities and the state. How-to or concrete action plans are also welcome.

Workshops are scheduled for 60-minutes with an expected 30-70 participants. Q&A, audience participation and completion of feedback forms should be included in the alloted timeframe.

Contact Community Organizer Rebecca Mann at 919-793-8898 or email for assistance. Electronic proposal submission is preferred and should be send to Mann. Contact her for a proposal form.

For more information, visit

Take the test!
STATEWIDE — “Get Real, Get Tested.” is a statewide HIV educational and testing campaign to encourage everyone to get tested for HIV. The project includes television and radio messages, a 24/7 toll-free HIV/AIDS Hotline, 1-888-HIV4REAL (1-888-448-4732).

The project is a collaborative effort involving North Carolina Communicable Disease Branch, WRAZ/FOX 50 and Gilead Sciences, with the cooperation of community-based organizations and local health departments.

In order to fight HIV and AIDS, everyone must get tested in order to know their HIV status and their partners’ HIV status. The goals of this project are to test people for HIV who have never been tested before, identify persons living with HIV/AIDS who need care and provide HIV and AIDS prevention and education messages to the general public. The clear message is that if you are sexually active, you should know your status and know the HIV status of your partner(s).

The project was launched in October 2006 with a series of televised “Get Real, Get Tested.”

The television spots feature local healthcare professionals, consumers, or N.C. Division of Public Health staff discussing HIV and AIDS and encouraging the viewer to visit the GRGT website for more information and for a link to a list of testing sites. Visitors can type in a N.C. zip code to get referrals to physicians, clinics, hospitals, AIDS service organizations, etc., for HIV/AIDS testing and/or to be directed to other HIV/AIDS-related services.

A door to door HIV testing community campaign is being conducted in several communities across the state. The Communicable Disease Branch is working with community-based organizations and local health departments to test at various locations and with mobile testing teams. The testing areas are posted on the website, advertised in local newspapers and on radio stations servicing those communities.

To find a testing center, obtain statistics or for more information, visit or

Researcher seeks gay fathers
STATEWIDE — Samantha L. Tornello, a University of Virginia graduate student, is currently working on a research project with Dr. Charlotte J. Patterson to study families headed by gay fathers. The confidential study consists of an online survey and will take approximately 25-35 minutes of each participant’s time. The purpose of this query is to examine the many ways families headed by gay fathers have been created, explore how families function and learn about the relationship between partners.

To qualify for the study the participant would have to identify as male, a father and gay or bisexual and have a least one child of any age. The child can be biological, adopted, foster, step or other. A man does not need to be the child’s legal parent.

This study has been approved by the University of Virginia IRB #2008-0407-00.

For more information, call 434-243-8558, email or visit

Mommas can share
STATEWIDE — Are you a lesbian mother? Do you want to be part of a national study?
Lesbian-identified women who are co-parenting one or more children with another woman are being sought as participants

This project is being conducted by Dr. Suzanne Johnson, principal investigator, at Dowling College’s Department of Psychology in Oakdale, N.Y., and has been approved by Dowling College’s Institutional Review Board.

The research team is currently looking for couples where both women would be willing to participate in a study on lesbian mothers. If only one person in the partnership wishes to participate, it is also acceptable, but it would be most beneficial if both would agree to do so.

Requirements include being in a lesbian relationship; the family was created after establishment of the relationship; and the children are currently 18 years old or younger.

“A few years ago, as lesbian mothers and researchers, my partner (Elizabeth O’Connor) and I set out to conduct a study on gay- and lesbian-headed families and the response from the community was overwhelming! We were able to turn what we found into a number of publications that some of you may be familiar with,” Johnson said. They are currently conducting a new study on two-parent, lesbian-headed families and are asking for help to learn more about them.

Co-parenting a child can be a wonderful and challenging joint venture. Research indicates that lesbian couples share many of the same issues that heterosexual couples face in co-parenting. However, there may be unique issues that lesbian parents face that heterosexual parents may not. They are exploring those issues in an attempt to better understand the unique challenges that lesbian mothers face as they raise their children.

Participation involves answering a series of questions, either through the mail or on a secure website. The questions should take about one hour to complete, but need not be completed all at once.
All responses will be kept confidential.

For those interested in assisting the team to learn more about lesbian mothers and their families, visit

Survey packets may be requested by calling 631-244-3061 or email at

info: Announce your community event in NC News Notes.

Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.