By Research Foundation to Cure AIDS President Kambiz Shekdar, Ph.D.


“Who Are You and What do you Contribute to the 

LGBTQ+ Community?”



Lesbian Shannon Whittington

CEO Whittington Consulting


I am a clinical nurse, educator, and author. I show organizations how to create LGBTQ+ inclusion in the workplace. I teach nurses how to provide LGBTQ+ patient-centered care. I am a cis gay woman who has been married to the woman of my dreams for over 21 years.


Bisexual Melanie Pagan Merritt

Member of Gay Officers Action League


I’m Melanie. A daughter, a sister, an aunt/tia, an Afro-Latina, an island gal, a Bronx girl, a police officer, a bisexual woman. With all that said, I feel that I bring my heart and soul into helping the LGBTQ community in any way I can. Thankfully, being a member of GOAL has helped me do it.



Queer / Questioning Query the Queer Fairy

Man on the Town

this/that/the other thing

Hi! I am “Q” and I am a loud-ass, globally connected town crier, and so-called white man. My contribution to the LGBTQ+ community is to connect people with one another with compassion, respect, and kindness. Looking forward to getting “query” with one another!



Gay Nathanael Holley



My existence is a gift. In the original Hebrew my name means “Gift from God,” and I try very hard to embody that sentiment. My Blackness, my queerness, and my experiences all mix to make a special sauce that may help someone. Let me give you a taste.


Trans Genn Herley

Executive Director TransNewYork


I am a transgender woman and a father of a 21-year-old daughter. The most important contribution my non-profit organization makes to the community is education! We do this through our psychoeducation programs, working with individuals, groups, and families. We educate corporations about workforce inclusion in the community.


Plus & HIV+ Brady Cudmore



My name is Brady Cudmore. I am a singer-songwriter/entertainer who loves sharing stories and building an inclusive community accessible to all. I have been HIV positive, undetectable, for the past three years. I contribute by sharing love and light through music and silly videos, and by entertaining audiences of all kinds!


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