For Immediate Release
Contact: Joey Villafane
LGBT Network leads community wide effort in bringing back the New Queens Pride Parade and Festival on June 5th, 2022
Astoria, NY (January 11, 2022) – After a 2-year hiatus, the annual Queens Pride celebration is coming back bigger and prouder than ever and under new leadership. The LGBT Network, a 29-year-old nonprofit who provides a wide array of education, health, support, human services, and advocacy for tens of thousands of LGBTQ people and families, is leading a community wide effort to commemorate and celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Queens Pride – now known as The New Queens Pride on Sunday June 5th, 2022 in Jackson Heights.
“Thirty years ago, Queens Pride was started because of a brutal murder of Julio Rivera and the intense homophobia in our schools over teaching students about LGBT people. While we have made many gains in the last 3 decades, Pride remains one of the single most important events our community has every year” said Dr. David Kilmnick, President/CEO of LGBT Network. “Pride is about visibility and creating a place of safety and a sense of belonging and community for people who may not have it. It is about giving hope and celebrating our diverse cultures and identities. And it is about a movement of people who are the most fierce and resilient communities one will ever encounter. We are beyond excited and proud to be working with Danny and the many community leaders and advocates to bring pride back to the largest borough in NYC and the most diverse urban area in the entire world” said Kilmnick.
Former New York City Council Member and Queens Pride founder Danny Dromm will chair The Network’s Community Advisory Council for The New Queens Pride and will be joined by over a dozen of the borough’s most prominent LGBTQ community leaders and advocates. “The Queens Pride Parade and Festival is integral to all other LGBTQ+ organizing in the borough. It must continue. As Queens Pride’s founder, I am proud to work with the LGBT Network and David Kilmnick to bring back Pride bigger and better than ever before,” said Dromm. “The last two years without Queens Pride have been difficult but the future looks bright. The New Queens Pride will bring us all together to celebrate our gains and will let everyone know that LGBTQIA people are their family, friends, and neighbors. Queens Pride is a true community event enjoyed by all”.
The New Queens Pride will take place in-person and back on the streets of Jackson Heights on Sunday June 5th, 2022. Planning is underway and it is anticipated to be the largest celebration in the 30-year history of Queens Pride. The LGBT Network is also the organizer of Long Island Pride on Sunday June 12th and Pride Night at Citi Field on Friday June 17th giving sponsors and the community unparalleled reach to tens of thousands of participants. Registration is open to march in the parade, festival booths, sponsorships and to volunteer at http://newqueenspride.org
Donovan Richards Jr., Queens Borough President said: “As the borough of Queens makes its comeback from a tumultuous two years, I’m thrilled Queens Pride is making a comeback of its own. Thanks to the LGBT Network, David Kilmnick and my good friend, former Council Member Danny Dromm, we will now have another opportunity to celebrate pride along the streets of Jackson Heights – just in time for Queens Pride’s 30th anniversary. Many thanks to all for Queens Pride’s big return”.
Catalina Cruz, New York State Assembly Member said: “I am thrilled to hear The New Queens Pride is bringing back our beloved annual celebration. I look forward to working with the LGBT Network, the advisory council and our community to push forward this historic community celebration”.
Shekar Krishnan, New York City Council Member said: “I am excited that the Queens LGBTQIA Pride Parade and Festival will return to the streets of Jackson Heights this June. It’s absence over the last two years has left a void that residents and visitors alike have deeply felt. This is one of our neighborhood’s largest parades and brings joy to all who attend. I want to congratulate the LGBT Network, David Kilmnick and Queens Pride founder, Danny Dromm, for making this happen.”
Lynn Schulman, New York City Council Member said: “Queens Pride is vital to the LGBTQIA movement because it offers so many young people, especially young people of color, the opportunity to see that they are not alone. I am so pleased that the LGBT Network has stepped up to the plate to continue Queens Pride’s 30-year legacy of bringing diverse groups of people together for this one special day. Congratulations to David Kilmnick and Danny Dromm.”
Michael Mallon, President of the Lesbian and Gay Democratic Club of Queens said: “Thank you, LGBT Network for bringing Pride back to Queens. It is great to see that the Network is planning the 30th Anniversary of the Queens LGBTQ+ Pride Parade and Festival. After a two-year absence, our borough’s LGBTQ+ community members will have an opportunity to come together to walk, ride, and dance down 37th Avenue once again this June. Congratulations to parade founder Danny Dromm and LGBT Network CEO David Kilmnick on organizing this historic event. You are helping to usher in a new era of pride here in the World’s Borough.”
Matthew Silverstein, Democratic State Committeeman, 26th AD and Community Activist said: “I am so excited to hear that Queens Pride is returning this year and returning thanks to the LGBT Network. Queens Pride has been such an integral part of the LGBTQIA movement over the past 30 years. It was important for young Gay kids like me growing up to see an organization out there advocating for our rights. I want to thank Queens Pride Founder Danny Dromm for all of his work and I would like to thank LGBT Network CEO David Kilmnick for organizing this years event and for asking me to serve on this committee. It is even more important this year for me to show my new daughter Abigail that Pride is strong in Queens County.”
Melissa Sklarz, District Leader, 30th AD, Part B said: “I moved back to Queens 16 years ago. I did so because it is friendly, affordable, and diverse. Queens Pride represents all of those attributes and more. It has always been an outpouring of love and community, where all are welcome, and the joy of thousands of participants is always a sight. I look forward to supporting the effort for Queens Pride 2022 and hope that all LGBTQ Queens residents and their friends and families will join with us.”
Eddie Valentin & Casimiro Villa, Owners of Friends Tavern & Viva La Heights Bar said: “Friend’s Tavern, has been a major supporter and sponsor of the Queens Pride Parade & Festival since it began in 1993. We are super excited to start working with the LGBT Network, to make sure that the most exciting and inclusive Pride event in NYC, continues growing and representing all members of our community!”
Mohamed Q. Amin, Founder and Executive Director of Caribbean Equality Project (CEP) said: “I am honored to be a part of this new era of Queens Pride’s history- one that centers on racial justice, equity, and trans inclusivity. Since the CEP formation in 2015, Danny Dromm has been an avid supporter of the Queens-based organization’s advocacy to uplift and protect Caribbean LGBTQ+ immigrant voices in NYC. As we continue to navigate the evolving challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, we must keep creating spaces to celebrate our victories, tell our stories of embodied resilience, and honor those we’ve lost to pandemics after pandemics. Being a member of the LGBT Network’s Queens Pride’s Community Advisory Committee allows me to continue fighting for greater inclusion and representation of the cultural diversity of Queer and Trans people in Queens. It’s also an opportunity to collectively work with leaders to envision a Queens where our most vulnerable community members are protected, loved, and affirmed.”
Rosemary Lopez, Executive Director of AIDS Center of Queens County (ACQC) said: “ACQC has had a long-standing relationship with Queens Pride since its inception more than 30 years ago. The agency’s involvement has included sponsorship opportunities under the leadership of Councilman Daniel Dromm, and other community leaders. As ACQC’s chief leader, I have made it a priority to give significant support of Queens Pride activities. I along with the ACQC staff are committed to continue providing the support necessary to The LGBT Network and The New Queens Pride to maintain and grow the quality of excellence of this annual event that has meant so much to the Queens community at large”
Richard Lieberman, Director of the LaGuardia and Wagner Archives at CUNY/LGCC said: “I am thrilled that the Queens LGBTQ Pride Parade and Festival will take place this June. BRAVO! to the efforts of parade founder Danny Dromm and the LGBT Network. Queens wasn’t the same without the parade the last two years. Attended by tens of thousands of borough residents, the parade has become a major event, reflective of the diversity of Queens. The South Asian Lesbian and Gay Association, the Columbian Gay and Lesbian Association, Las Buenas Amigas, and other groups marched, illustrating the multiracial, multiethnic nature of our LGBTQ community. A standing ovation for the LGBT Network for involving community stakeholders in the decision-making process and to Danny for reviving and reimagining the parade and festival. Queens is back!”
Andrew Ronan, activist and former Queens Pride Co-Chair said: “Congratulations and thanks to the LGBT Network for sponsoring the New Queens Pride Parade and Festival. I am excited to serve on the Community Advisory Council and look forward to ensuring that Queens Pride’s history of being a community-based parade continues for years to come.”
Bill Meehan, former Queens Pride Board member and community activist said: “Queens Pride will be back in force in June. I am proud to have been asked to serve on the advisory committee and am committed to seeing that the traditions that make Queens Pride so special continue into the future. Since its inception 30 years ago, Queens Pride has provided hope to the thousands of people who attend its events. I am looking forward to seeing everyone together again on June 5, 2022 on 37th Avenue.”
Brendan Fay, Filmmaker and Activist said: “I am glad to learn that “Queens Pride” the movement of Queer liberation and visibility in the borough of Queens is being reclaimed and revived as The New Queens Pride. As an openly gay Irish immigrant I was so proud to step out with Danny Dromm, Maritza Martinez, Ed Sederbaum and other organizers and activists behind the Queens Lesbian & Gay Pride banner on June 6, 1993. That first Queens Pride Parade in June 1993 was a huge day for LGBTQ history in New York. The LGBT civil rights movement had moved from beyond Greenwich Village to the outer boroughs”.
The LGBT Network is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is a home and voice for LGBT people, their families, and support systems of Long Island and Queens. The New York LGBT Network’s community centers help LGBT people to be themselves, stay healthy, and change the world. Since 1993, the New York LGBT Network has been pioneering advocacy and social change to promote safe spaces where LGBT people live, learn, work, play, and pray.