Monday, January 28, 2013

Creating Change 2014 Is Finally Houston Bound!

The curtain has closed on another wildly successful Creating Change Conference in the ATL, and now the hosting torch for this premier community event is being passed to my hometown for 2014.

I can tell you right now the Houston rainbow community and yours truly are ecstatic that it is coming here. We are immensely proud of our world class international city which is the largest in Texas and with 2.2 million citizens residing here the fourth largest in the nation.   We're looking forward to having you 3500 plus peeps who attended the 2013 edition of Creating Change join us here in H-town from January 29-February 2, 2014. 

I mentioned in the post I wrote not long after I attended a local interest meeting for it last June, Mayor Parker, the Convention and Visitor's Bureau and our local TBLG community really wanted this event, especially since that little burg 262 miles up I-45 from us has hosted it twice

Yeah, there's no let up in the civic competition between Houston and our state's third largest city, and I can say with certainty that we Houstonians are determined to exceed what Dallas did in 2010. 

What a lot of people don't realize is that Houston has a long and proud progressive history.and the Lone Star imprint on GLBT history has a Houston flavor as well.  

'The Houston GLBT Political Caucus that was founded in 1975 is the oldest such GLBT political organization in the South. The Lawrence v Texas Supreme Court case that took down US sodomy laws had its origins here.  

We have groundbreaking GL leaders such as Ray Hill, the late Rep.Barbara Jordan and Mayor Annise Parker who call our 628 square miles of southeast Texas soil home.  

Transgender history also has a Houston flavor to it as well thanks to a major assist by 'The Godmother of the Trans Civil Rights Movement' in Judge Phyllis Frye.  

There are three living IFGE Trinity Award winners (Phyllis Frye, Vanessa Edwards Foster and moi) that reside inside the Houston city limits.  A fourth Trinity was won by the late Brenda Thomas. 

Some of the early trans community leadership was epicentered in Houston or cut their early activist teeth here like blogger and trans historian Katrina Rose.

We Houston transpeople also have a propensity for starting conferences that fulfill trans community needs of the moment.  ICTLEP was started here by Phyllis in 1992 and now we have the Texas Transgender Non Discrimination Summit that Josephine started in 2009. 

The leadership tradition Judge Frye, Jackie Thorne, Jane Ellen Fairfax and Sarah DePalma started continues with Vanessa Edwards Foster, Lou Weaver, Josephine Tittsworth, Jenifer Rene Pool, Cristan Williams and some award winning African-American blogger y'all might have heard about    

When it comes to the female illusionist and pageant world, Houston is a hotbed for that as well. 

1999 Miss Continental titleholder Tommie Ross, 2012 Miss Gay US of A Lawanda Jackson  Hot Chocolate, the late Naomi Sims, the late Michael Andrews, Shawnna Brooks and Chevelle Brooks are either from here or honed their skills in this area before moving on to fame, fortune and titles elsewhere.  In the development pipeline are more talented people in our Montrose gayborhood clubs who keep that proud tradition going. 

And yes, been a while (1999) since I've attended a Creating Change.  Various schedule conflicts and challenges have kept me from attending my second one.  Many of you let me know last weekend how much you missed me in the ATL and the feeling was mutual.  

Now Creating Change its finally coming to my hometown for the first time ever and I couldn't be happier about it.  

I and the Houston GLBT community are chomping at the bit for next January to roll around.  We're ready to roll out the pink carpet for you folks who want to experience some of our world famous Texas hospitality and help facilitate a Creating Change that will help you build your activist organizing skills, friendships, and knowledge base at the same time.

And oh yeah, when you get here, make sure you sample some Blue Bell ice cream before you leave.

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