Metro Weekly

Creating Change 2021: Registration opens for LGBTQ leadership conference

Annual conference, focusing on racial and social justice, will be held virtually from Jan. 28-31

creating change, lgbtq, conference

A panel discussion from Creating Change 2018 – Photo by Randy Shulman

Registration for the 33rd Creating Change Conference, scheduled to take place virtually from Jan. 28-31, 2021, is now open.

The annual political, leadership, and skills-building conference, organized by the National LGBTQ Task Force, brings together LGBTQ advocates, activists, leaders, and allies from around the globe to address social justice issues and teach attendees how to hone their activist and organizing skills to accomplish their goals.

The three-day program, which will be streamed live, will include two days of day-long institutes, an in-depth dive into a particular issue, as well as workshops and caucus meetings, followed by social activities, including the “Agents of Change” ball.

Comic, actor, singer, and writer Sandra Valls will serve as emcee for the conference. The opening keynote address will be given by actress, model and advocate Dominique Jackson of Pose fame, with the closing keynote given by adrienne maree brown, an American author, women’s rights activist and Black feminist from Detroit and the former executive director of the Ruckus Society.

The annual “State of the Movement” address will feature remarks by current Executive Director Rea Carey and incoming Executive Director Kierra Johnson.

Bounce music legend Big Freedia, of Fuse’s reality show Big Freedia Bounces Back, will give several performances during the course of the conference.

See also: National Task Force and Creating Change hold “Queering Racial Justice” event

“We knew that 2020 was going to be a critical year for all of us, but could never have predicted the overwhelming challenges we face, from a global pandemic to an economic depression to the uprising against racial injustice facing this country,” Andy Garcia, the director of Creating Change, who is now in his third year of planning the conference, said in a statement.

“I am thrilled that we have Big Freedia, adrienne maree brown and Dominique Jackson participating, along with thousands of LGBTQ+ activists and allies,” Garcia added. “We will have the chance to create community, learn from each other and plan for the year ahead.”

Garcia expressed hope that a new presidential administration friendlier to the LGBTQ community will make it easier to make headway on issues related to racial and economic justice.

“When Creating Change begins we will be living under a new White House administration and hopeful, but also facing a possible sea change in the status of queer rights from the Supreme Court and needing to see real institutional and policy change for racial and economic justice,” he said.

“All while we continue to grapple with the impact of the pandemic and other obstacles we face as a community. Given its virtual nature, we hope more queer people than ever before participate in Creating Change, as we need each other now more than ever.”

For more information on Creating Change, visit  www.thetaskforce.org/creatingchange.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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