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Festivals, Fairs & Special Events

The 2023 Esteem Awards

Join us on Saturday, July 1, at Sidetrack 3349 N. Halsted in Chicago from 1:00 – 3:00 pm as we honor local and national organizations and individuals for their continued support of African American and LGBTQ+ communities in entertainment, media, civil rights, business, and art. All are welcome to attend this free event.

Author/Activist/Educator Michelle E. Brown will be our Mistress of Ceremonies for this exciting celebration of honor.
Chicago area honorees:
Outstanding Service, Male: Joel D. Jackson, works in the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, part of the Urban Health Initiative at UChicago Medicine. He is the Director of Inclusion and Equity Strategies.
Outstanding Service, Female: Chicago Foundation for Women. Since 1985, CFW has led the movement to achieve fundamental rights and equal opportunities, investing in women and girls as catalysts in building stronger communities for all.
Outstanding Service, Transgender: Jae Rice (he/him) is a trans-masculine public figure fighting for the liberation of oppressed communities daily. Jae is the Interim CEO at Brave Space Alliance.
Future Leaders: Dion Alexander McNeal is an HIV Advocate, Community Co-Chair, and digital designer. He is the Manager/Founder of Hopeful in Victory LLC.
Institutional Award: Pride in The Pews. The organization is a grassroots nationwide nonprofit building bridge and creating solutions that empower the Black LGBTQ+ community to thrive in the pew, the pulpit, and the public square.
Artistic Expression: avery r. young. avery is a Black writer, performer, visual artist, and activist. His performance, visual text, and sound design work have been featured in several exhibitions and theatre festivals.
Outstanding Healthcare Professional: Dr. Maurice Brownlee. Dr. Brownlee is a wellness & health services provider with broad expertise in internal medicine and treating infectious diseases. He is the Chief Wellness Officer & Medical Director of Wellness Homes in Chicago.
Special Recognition: Chicago Humanities. Chicago Humanities connects people to the ideas that shape and define us and promotes the lifelong exploration of what it means to be human. Chicago Humanities fosters curiosity, celebrates creativity, explores the boundaries of contemporary knowledge and culture, and challenges us to see ourselves and the world anew.
Thanks to our sponsor Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH)


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