Tonight, HRC held its 23rd annual HRC National Dinner at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. Giving his first remarks on the HRC National Dinner stage since taking the helm of the organization, HRC President Alphonso David was joined by more than 3,500 guests from across the country and around the world. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer delivered remarks, actress Dominique Jackson received the HRC National Equality Award and global superstar Ricky Martin received the HRC National Visibility Award.
Additional speakers and special guests included actor Jake Choi, openly bisexual NFL veteran Ryan Russell, actress Ana Ortiz, disco legend Thelma Houston, singer/songwriter Alice Smith, actor Dyllón Burnside, the 22nd U.S. Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning, Tony award-winning music collaborator Jason Michael Webb, the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, D.C., Heritage Signature Chorale, comedian Dana Goldberg, DJ Nhandi and many more.
WATCH: HRC President Alphonso David delivers remarks.
WATCH: Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer delivers remarks.
WATCH: Jake Choi, Dominique Jackson and Ricky Martin deliver remarks.
A strong advocate for the LGBTQ community, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer was one of the first national politicians to march in the New York City Pride Parade. Throughout his career, Sen. Schumer has been a tireless advocate for equal rights for those in the LGBTQ community. He earned a perfect 100 percent on the HRC Congressional Scorecard for the 115th Congress. Elected to the Senate in 1998, he had previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives. In 2017, Sen. Schumer was elected Senate Democratic Leader by his colleagues and he has helped lead the fight against the Trump-Pence Administration’s efforts to roll back LGBTQ rights.
Global Music Icon Ricky Martin continues to soar in his third decade as a leader in the entertainment industry. Since his first solo album release in 1991, Martin has appreciated a world wide fan base, sold over 70 million records and has won multiple Grammy and Latin Grammy awards. Martin’s success is rooted in his passion for music, his instinctive rhythmic style and a zest for performing. He is a multi-talented phenomenon as an actor, a New York Times best-selling author and a passionate philanthropist and humanitarian. Martin came out as gay in 2010. Recently, he was publicly involved in the protests against the former governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, who used homophobic and other bigoted language in private conversations.
Dominique Jackson is a Tobagonian-American transgender actress, author, model and reality television personality, most famous for her performance as Elektra Abundance in FX's Television series Pose. She is a great advocate for social change, transforming her community through her partnership with nonprofit organizations such as Destination Tomorrow in the Bronx to advocate for transgender and LGBTQ+ rights. The star has an extensive social media following, with a fan base of over 100,000 combined followers on Instagram and Twitter. In an interview with Forbes magazine, Jackson said, “If we can tap into our minds both scientifically and spiritually, we can reach unthinkable heights. Such heights let us more clearly assess successes and failures, and provide us with direction.”