The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame inducted eight individuals, three organizations and three "Friends of the Community" (allies) at an Oct. 11 ceremony hosted by The Chicago History Museum.
Founded in 1991, it's the only city-sanctioned LGBT hall of fame in the world. The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame honors those who have improved LGBTQ+ people's quality of life and those who have made significant contributions to the city as a whole.
The inductees are selected from a list of suggestions submitted by LGBTQ+ people throughout Chicago.
"Tonight's honorees have had their own challenges and successes and they reflect the diversity of our culture," said Ald. Tom Tunney (44th Ward), who presented the awards on behalf of Mayor Lori Lightfoot. "We're so proud to carry on the legacy of our community, knowing that brighter days are in front of us if we continue to engage, make sure our voices are heard and help our youth to understand the history of our movement as we continue to move forward."
The individuals who were inducted this year included photographer Rick Aguilar; the founder of Life is Work Zahara Monique Bassett; Howard Brown Health Medical Director Maya Green; artist and charitable event organizer Mattew Harvat; The Legacy Project's Paul Highfield; the designer of one of the country's first discos, Tommy (T.L.) Noble; Emmy winner Joey Soloway; and Holocaust survivor and Bagel Restaurant owner Dan Wolf, who passed away recently.
A variety of LGBTQ+ organizations were also recognized, including the concert production company Homocore Chicago, which provided a safe space for people to enjoy all-ages queer-punk performances; the monthly LGBTQ+ storytelling show Outspoken; and the community choruses of Windy City Performing Arts.
The Friends of the Community inducted this year included Patty Latham, who singlehandedly raised more than $80,000 for LGBTQ+ organizations; the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center, for its LGBTQ+ programming and advocacy; and Season of Concern, an organization that provides financial assistance to people living with HIV/AIDS.
The city stopped funding the hall of fame in 2016 and at that time, it was renamed the Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame and has been maintained by a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, with approval from the City of Chicago.
The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame doesn't have a physical location, but people can view it online: chicagolgbthalloffame.org .
To learn more about this year's inductees and their accomplishments, visit www.windycitytimes.com/lgbt/Chicago-LGBT-Hall-of-Fame-Announces-2022-Inductees/73696.