Big D Bear Dance doles out $20K

I chatted up Mark Trimble earlier today, and he told me that Sunday night’s Big D Bear Dance at TMC: The Mining Company was quite the success. Trimble is one of the BDBD organizers. The night is not only an offshoot of the bigger TBRU event, but also raises money for local organizations, and Sunday night was all about Resource Center Dallas’ Food Pantry. Darren Graff, also with BDBD, took over some canned food donations and a check for $2,700. Whoa.

Last week, Trimble and I also chatted about the funds raised from the TBRU dance event. BDBD recently made their check presentation to the Dallas Bears, which in turn, will dole it out among several beneficiaries.

“We partner with [Dallas Bears] during TBRU for the joint purpose of raising money for the charities and throwing a kick-ass party,” Trimble said. “But we let them write the checks to the charities directly pooled with the money they raise from the rest of TBRU. I’m happy to be involved with people doing good and interesting stuff in the bear community. Somebody needs to toot our horns every once in a while!”

Below, the BDBD gents present their check for $18,000 to the Dallas Bears. Photos courtesy of Norman Ames.

 

—  Rich Lopez

RCD to begin Saturday HIV testing program

STD testing will be offered during new testing hours including free syphilis screening

DAVID TAFFET  |  Staff Writer
taffet@dallasvoice.com

Through a partnership with the Texas Department of State Health Services, Resource Center Dallas will begin HIV and STD testing on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning May 21, RCD officials announced this week

Testing will be offered at the Nelson-Tebedo Community Clinic, 4012 Cedar Springs Road.

A rapid test will offer HIV results within 20 minutes. That will be confirmed through a Nucleic Acid Amplification Testing that can detect HIV as soon as 14 days after infection. The rapid test window of detection is about three months after infection.

Last year, 30 NAAT tests given at Nelson-Tebedo confirmed HIV that rapid testing did not detect. That was out of about 3,000 tests given in 2010, or 1 percent.

Bret Camp, associate executive director for health and medical services at Resource Center Dallas, said results from the NAAT test take a week and so does testing for other STDs.

Testing for syphilis is free but there is a fee for other STD tests which include chlamydia, gonorrhea and human papillomavirus. Confidential HIV testing is free. Anonymous testing through a unique identifier is at a small charge.

All results are given in person.

Although walk-ins for Saturday testing are accepted, Camp said that appointments are encouraged.

“By adding these Saturday testing hours, it will now be more convenient than ever to take charge of your health,” Camp said.

—  John Wright

GLBT Job Expo returns to SMU on April 27

Job seekers speaking to employers at the 2010 GLBT Job Expo.

The sixth annual GLBT Job Expo will be held at Southern Methodist University on Wednesday, April 27 from 2 to 6 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Students Center, 3140 Dyer St. Free parking for attendees will be available along Bishop Boulevard.

The job expo is organized by Resource Center Dallas and the North Texas GLBT Chamber of Commerce. Dallas Voice is the media sponsor. The on-campus host is the Office of Diversity at SMU’s Cox School of Business.

LGBT jobseekers will be able to meet with dozens of employers and participate in a variety of classes.

“Whether you are looking for a better job, re-entering the workforce or you are just starting your career, GLBT Job Expo provides an opportunity to meet with employers looking to hire you. We’ve brought in new employers including DFW Airport and J.C Penney to take part in this year’s event,” said Lee Taft, RCD’s associate executive director for GLBT programs and strategic partnerships.

Among the other companies that will attend are Texas Instruments, American Airlines, Raytheon and Capital One. The city of Dallas, the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department, Dallas Police Department and Dallas Area Rapid Transit are among the public agencies recruiting new employees. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission is returning and looking for LGBT applicants.

“Everybody knows the economy continues to be challenging, which makes it critically important that businesses hire the best possible candidates. Even if an employer is not hiring immediately, they have the opportunity to collect jobseekers’ resumes for future hiring,” said Tony Vedda, president and CEO of the North Texas GLBT Chamber.

Everybody is welcome. You do not have to be gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender to attend.

More information on the Job Expo is available at RCDallas.org, or call (214) 528-0144.

—  David Taffet

Cox named to board of Women’s Foundation

Cece Cox

From Staff Reports
editor@dallasvoice.com

Cece Cox, executive director of Resource Center Dallas, has been named to a three-year term on the board of directors of the Dallas Women’s Foundation.

The appointment is effective Feb. 1.

The foundation, established in 1985, focuses on women’s philanthropy, grant making and gender-specific research. It has given more than $13 million to more than 950 organizations, with a net impact on more than a quarter-million women and girls primarily in Dallas, Denton and Collin counties.

The foundation is part of a global network of 145 womens’ foundations on six continents.

Cox became executive director of RCD in July, 2010, after about three years as the center’s associate executive director for GLBT community services. As associated executive director, Cox was directly responsible for creating and maintaining programs at the center.

She has also worked with and/or supported the Turtle Creek Chorale, Legal Hospice of Texas, Youth First Texas and the regional office of Lambda Legal.

Cox is a former president of the Dallas Gay and Lesbian Alliance and a former co-chair of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation/Dallas. She serves on the advisory board for both the Black Tie Dinner and SMU’s Simmons School of Education and Human Development. In 1999, Cox received the Kuchling Humanitarian Award from the Black Tie Dinner.

Cox is an alumna of both Leadership Dallas and Leadership Lambda, a former board member of the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identification Issues Law Section for the State Bar of Texas, and an attorney licensed in the state of Texas. Prior to joining RCD, Cox was an attorney focused on commercial litigation, bankruptcy, municipal law and commercial transactions. She is a volunteer attorney for Legal Hospice of Texas.

Cox earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and a law degree from SMU. She is the mother of a 12-year-old son and the partner of Judge Barbara J. Houser.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition Jan. 28, 2011.

—  John Wright

Resource Center Dallas Honors Volunteers

It was an evening of glitz and glam as hundreds from the LGBT community packed the Starlight Lounge to honor volunteers for Resource Center Dallas on Sunday.

More than 1,000 people contributed more than 47,000 hours — valued at about $985,000 — to RCD in 2010.

On Sunday night, RCD honored them — Retro Hollywood style.

The moment volunteers and guest stepped out of their vehicles, they were met by valet and shown to the red carpet. Upon entry, they were invited to the posh open bar as well as catered hors d’oeuvres and dinner.

“This event is excellent for the community,” said James Weber, a supporter of the event. “It encourages support, involvement and gives a sense of appreciation to a whole lot of people.”

With more than 100 volunteers to recognize, RCD utilized a dual host technique and a team of (what else?) volunteers to hand out awards.

The true star of the night was longtime volunteer Barbara Foster. For her significant contributions to RCD and various other community groups over the years, Foster received the 2010 Martha Dealey Volunteer of the Year award.

“Come see what a difference — it’ll change in your life — see what you’ll get out of [volunteering],” said Foster. “Because I’ll tell you, I get more out of [volunteering] than I give.”

She added that being recognized by others she works with at RCD felt wonderful.

Cece Cox, executive director of RCD, said the power of volunteers to help an agency succeed in serving the community is what it’s all about — having fun networking but contributing back to the community.

—  admin

RCD, SMU set workshops with Bradshaw

Resource Center Dallas and the SMU Simmons School of Education and Human Development will host two workshops with New York Times-bestselling author and world-renown educator John Bradshaw. Proceeds from both events will benefit the programs and services of the center.

The first workshop, scheduled for Feb. 10, is titled “Reclaiming Your Inner Child,” and the second workshop, set for March 2, is on “Healing the Shame that Binds Us.” Both run from 9 a.m. to noon, and will be conducted at the Lakewood Theater, 1825 Abrams Road.

Bradshaw is the pioneer of the concept of the “inner child” and brought the term “dysfunctional family” into mainstream language.

Workshops are $65 each individually or $100 for both; students pay $25 per workshop. Continuing education units are available for mental health professionals.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition January 7, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

LSR Journal: Because they still need us

ROBERT MOORE  Team Dallas Voice

Robert Moore Team Dallas Voice
ROBERT MOORE Team Dallas Voice

I left the office and went out for lunch today.  Not an uncommon occurrence. I go out almost every day. The biggest challenge I have before I leave the building is deciding where to eat. Dallas is a restaurant town, you know.

Where to eat? How much to spend? How far to travel? How much time do I have in my schedule today? So many decisions to be made just for a simple lunch.

Not today.

Today I had lunch with Jennifer Hurn, the client services manager for Resource Center Dallas, one of the beneficiaries of Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS, along with AIDS Services of Dallas and AIDS Outreach Center of Tarrant County.

I had called Jennifer and told her I was riding Lone Star Ride this weekend and I wanted to meet some of the clients at the Hot Meals Program, which she oversees. Ultimately, when you are holding out your hand and asking people for money to support a cause, your cause, you want to know and see that the money they hand over to you is doing some good.

The RCD’s Hot Meals Program serves between 100 to 150 clients every weekday. Today’s menu was barbeque chicken, green beans with potatoes, garlic toast, a salad, plus cake for those, like me, that have a sweet tooth.

To be eligible for the meal, a client must be HIV-positive, have an income at or below 300 percent of the poverty level and fall under Ryan White funding.

“We see some people once a week and some every day,” Hurn explains. “The numbers always go up at the end of the month when the social security money starts to run out. Always. We have a total of over 900 clients who are eligible for the meal.

If they all showed up on a single day, I don’t know what we would do.”

Jennifer doesn’t want to face that prospect and I understand her fears. Most of the chairs are taken.

After going down the serving line, we sit down with Edward, a longtime client. Edward lives in Oak Cliff and takes the bus on his daily trip to RCD. The journey takes him an hour-and-a-half to two hours each way.

“I have been coming here for years. I’m an old-timer at this place. Plus I’m 60 years old,” he says, shaking his head with a grin, something of an acknowledgment he didn’t expect to be around this long. He notes that while the trip is onerous because he walks with a back brace and the help of a cane, he looks forward to it.

“If I don’t come here I may not see many people. I try to get to know people, especially the new folks who may not be comfortable at first.” Edward is the welcoming voice closest to the serving line.

While Edward holds court, Jennifer and I change tables to meet some of the other diners. Rick and Mike are longterm AIDS survivors.  Rick became positive in 1997, Mike in 1987.

They both were successful businessmen who held professional jobs and never expected to be clients of a non-profit like Resource Center, but HIV has taken its toll and neither are able to work. Now, they live together to look after each other, have some company and help with living expenses.

“This place is important to me,” Rick states firmly. “I take a lot of medication and, well, it can make me confused,” he confides. “I really like to cook. I used to cook all the time, but now, well, many times I start cooking but I can’t finish what

I’m cooking. I don’t remember what to do next so I just give up. But then the medicine makes you sick if you are not eating.

This lunch solves a lot of problems for me.”

Rick looks straight at me, and I realize that he is about to say something he hates to admit: “Plus this place gives me a reason to get up and get dressed and gets me out. If I didn’t come here I might never go outside.”

Mike nods his head in agreement. “The interaction at the table is very important. There are people going through what you are going through, or maybe you can help somebody with a problem that you had once. Maybe you can teach them about Social Security or how to make it through a day at Parkland. Living on charity is not an easy way to live.

“There are homeless people here. They can get groceries from the Food Pantry but if you have no place to cook, how are you going to eat a hot meal? At least the kids on the street can get one hot meal a day.”

Mike knows a few of the homeless kids who got sick and went back home to stay. Their parents thought they just had a sick kid, then they found out they had a gay kid too, so they just turned them out on the street. “Isn’t that wrong?” he asks in disgust.  “Is to me.”

Edward and Mike and Rick turn a few questions to me. Why are you here? Why are you taking notes? I explain that I am doing Lone Star Ride, writing this installment of LSR Journal and, most importantly, asking people for money to keep programs like Hot Meals going.

“The great thing about the ride is that it a very public statement,” Mike says. “You let people know that AIDS is still here. It’s still with me, that’s for sure.”

Jennifer asks how Lone Star Ride fundraising is going. She knows it is tough out there raising money. “Whatever you raise, we will make it go as far as possible,” she promises.

Indeed she does. For that thirty bucks I spend on a typical business lunch, Jennifer can feed an RCD client a hot lunch every weekday for a month. On thirty bucks. Amazing.

The crew and the riders who come together to make events like Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS work ultimately are there because they want to help people like Edward and Mike and Rick, and all the clients and the programs of the three beneficiaries.

We ride for those who cannot.  I am determined to ride every mile.

As I get up to leave, Rick stands up and shakes my hand, and invites me back. I accept. I tell him we’ll share a table again. Because like Rick says, “I like going out for lunch.”

Robert Moore is captain of Team Dallas Voice. Donate to him online at LoneStarRide.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 24, 2010.

—  Kevin Thomas

Here’s your chance to be ‘Something Fabulous’ as performance troupe holds auditions

GayBingo entertainment
Something Fabulous

Something Fabulous, the performance troupe that performs monthly at Resource Center Dallas’ GayBingo, will be holding auditions to add members on Sunday, Oct. 3, from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in The Rose Room at Station 4. But audition forms must be completed and turned in, with a photo, at  RCD, 2701 Reagan, by Sept. 26. Audition applications will be accepted after that date, but those who get everything turned in on time get priority treatment.

Audition forms and more information are available here.

Dancers have to be at least 21 and comfortable working in an LGBT atmosphere. They must also be prepared to rehearse every Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and to perform in monthly shows.

GayBingo is now in its 10th year, and Something Fabulous has been part of the fun for more than three of those years. The performance troupe — dedicated to education and activism through dance — is “not just a drag show,” but “a full-scale production that includes choreography, illusion, costumes, theatrics, and humor,” group leaders say.

The troupe started out with two drag queens, Jenna Skyy and Patti Le Plae Safe, who performed during intermission at the monthly GayBingo events. Then they added a drag king (Johnny Big) and a divette (Brandi Amara Skyy). The group now has more than 10 members including drag queens, drag kings, belly dancers and hip-hop artists.

—  admin

Logo’s ‘Bump!’ features Dallas

Resource Center Dallas reports on Facebook that Logo’s “Bump!” was scheduled to feature Big D on Wednesday night. Logo crews were at RCD’s “the Five Factor” and Gaybingo Dallas last fall. Filmmaker Robert Camina says the episode was also to include Michael DiQuinzio, Rodd Gray, Hungdinger, Wayne Smith as Cher, ilume, Derrick Brown, Station 4, the Round-Up, Sue Ellens, the Tin Room, Hotel Palomar, Woody’s, JR.’s and the Dallas Diablos. Wow!

According to the Logo website, the show was scheduled to air at 6 p.m. local time and again at  10:30 a.m. Thursday. In case you’re not familiar, here’s a description of the show:

Join hosts Charlie David (Dante’s Cove), and Shannon McDonough as they tour the world in search of the most fascinating and engaging destinations for LGBT travelers. Every episode showcases a different gay-friendly city and all the fun and stylish activities they offer.

—  John Wright

Resource Center’s Phelps clan counterprotest up to $1,200

As of Wednesday afternoon, Resource Center Dallas had brought in $1,200 for “Hell Freezes Over,” the agency’s counterprotest fundraiser of Westboro Baptist Church. Not bad, but the price of a new ice machine for RCD’s HIV/AIDS meals program is $3,000, so there’s still a ways to go. Donate by going here. RCD’s Rafael McDonnell said donations thus far have come from six states including Texas.

—  John Wright