Metro Weekly

Anthony Williams to co-host fundraiser for Wanda Alston Foundation

Benefit will honor life of foundation's namesake and Williams' first appointee to head Office of LGBT Affairs

Anthony Williams (Photo: Districtresident222, via Wikimedia Commons).
Anthony Williams (Photo: Districtresident222, via Wikimedia Commons).

Former D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams will co-host a benefit in memory of the late Wanda Alston, who once served as his first appointee to head the Mayor’s Office of LGBT Affairs, to raise money for LGBT homeless youth served by the foundation that bears her name.

The Wanda Alston House, run and managed by the Wanda Alston Foundation, is the first and only housing program in D.C. solely dedicated to offering pre-independent living services to homeless LGBT and questioning youth. Before her murder in 2005, Alston worked as part of the National Organization of Women (NOW) before becoming a member of its National Board of Directors. She also served as an event organizer for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and was a political consultant who was active within the Democratic Party. 

“Wanda Alston was a tireless champion for equality and an advocate for helping those who needed a little help for themselves,” said Chris Hartmann, the coordinator for the Wanda Alston Foundation’s second annual Fall Reception. “She dedicated her life to providing hope for the powerless and empowering people to find their authentic selves. Former Mayor Anthony Williams, our honorary co-chair, recognized these qualities when he chose Wanda to be the first director of the Mayor’s Office of LGBT Affairs. As advocates of housing programs for homeless and at-risk LGBTQ youth, it is our honor to bear Wanda Alston’s name and continue the work she began. Her legacy of activism, advocacy and determination to ensure equal access to a higher quality of life drives our commitment to assisting LGBTQ youth in Washington, D.C.”

The Wanda Alston Foundation’s second annual Fall Reception will be held at Oct. 15 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe, in the Columbia Center, 1152 15th St. NW, Suite 100. Tickets cost $50 per person. For more information about the foundation or the Wanda Alston House, visit

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