From Staff Reports

Black Tie Dinner officials on Thursday announced the theme for the 2015 dinner, set for Nov. 14, and the 16 organizations chosen to share in proceeds from this year’s event. Dinner co-chairs Debra Davis and John Lawrimore made the announcements during a kickoff event held at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden.

Davis said the Black Tie Dinner committee chose “Ignite” as this year’s dinner because “We feel this theme represents the atmosphere in the community.

“We’ve seen a huge progression in LGBT rights over the last year, which seems to have ignited a new level of engagement towards our mission,” she explained.

The 2015 local beneficiaries are AIDS Interfaith Network, AIDS Outreach Center, AIDS Services of Dallas, Cathedral of Hope, Celebration Community Church, Congregation Beth El Binah, Equality Texas Foundation, Lambda Legal, Legacy Counseling Center, Legal Hospice of Texas, Northaven United Methodist Church, Resource Center, Turtle Creek Chorale, The Women’s Chorus of Dallas and Uptown Players.

The dinner’s national beneficiary is the Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

Each year, the Black Tie committee allocates about half of its proceeds to HRC and the remaining half is distributed to the local beneficiaries. Since the first dinner in 1982, which raised $6,000 for HRC, Black Tie Dinner — the largest LGBT fundraising dinner in the country — has distributed more than $19 million to HRC and local beneficiaries.

In addition to being the largest event of its kind, Dallas’ Black Tie Dinner is also the only event of its kind to donate to local organizations as well as HRC.

“Selecting beneficiaries is one of the most important decisions our board makes every year,” Lawrimore said. “Each of these organizations bring their own unique impact to our community.

They are the reason Black Tie Dinner exists and we are proud to be able to help fund their efforts.”

Raffle tickets and sponsorship tables are currently being sold online at General table sales begin in June.

For more information call 972-865-2239, ext. 29.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition March 27, 2015.