Diversity Honors Announces Honorees


Diversity Honors at Hard Rock Live presented by Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, the May 6 gala that will benefit Harvey Milk Foundation and The Pride Center at Equality Park, has announced its 2017 honorees. The globally renowned celebration serves as a kick-off to Harvey Milk Day events around the world and spotlights those who are transforming lives by living authentically and advancing inclusiveness.
This year’s stellar roster of honorees will include, but is not limited to, legendary entertainer Tiffany Arieagus; community leader Ilene Berliner; transgender advocate Jessica Norton; CEO of Stoli Group USA Patrick Piana and CEO of Compass in West Palm Beach Tony Plakas. The 2017 honorees for the Harvey Milk Foundation Awards: Milan Rosza Youth Award, Lilla Watson Global Recipient and the Milk Honors Medal will be announced shortly.


“The Harvey Milk Foundation is excited to begin 2017 Harvey Milk Day events, which marks the 40th anniversary of uncle Harvey’s historic election to public office, by co-hosting this important gala where we come together to honor men and women who remind us all that diversity is a strength, and diversity is a value that defines us not only as the South Florida community, but as a nation,” said Stuart Milk, co-founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation.


This collaborative effort between The Harvey Milk Foundation and The Pride Center at Equality Park, along with generous support from Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, has put South Florida on the international stage of LGBTQ rights and activism in honor of Harvey Milk, one of the first openly gay elected officials in the United States who was assassinated shortly after winning a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the election of Harvey Milk to public office.


The magical evening will commence with a lively cocktail reception and a variety of silent auction items. A seated three-course dinner will be followed by a memorable awards presentation hosted by Craig Stevens, WSVN evening news anchor. The charitable evening will culminate with a Stoli After-Party, also to be held at Hard Rock Live.


“As co-hosts of this landmark event and local equality advocates, we are truly thankful for the support and efforts of our honorees who tirelessly raise awareness and hope for the LGBT community,” said Robert Boo, chief executive officer at The Pride Center at Equality Park. “Every step toward making our world a more accepting and inclusive personal and professional environment is applauded. This is why we are unified in celebrating these incredible achievements and we invite the South Florida community to join us.”
Headline entertainment will be provided by Well-Strung, a string quartet with a modern twist, featuring Edmund Bagnell (first violin), Christopher Marchant (second violin), Daniel Shevlin (cello) and Trevor Wadleigh (viola). The group plays universally recognized classical pieces while singing pop music hits from the likes of Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Kelly Clarkson, and other pop stars for a uniquely engaging experience.


Diversity Honors has raised more than $120,000 in support of The Harvey Milk Foundation and The Pride Center at Equality Park while paying tribute to an impressive roster of honorees over the past two years. Honorees include: civil rights activists Judy and Dennis Shepard, recipients of the Harvey Milk Medal; Bollywood star Celina Jaitly who received the Harvey Milk Foundation’s Lilla Watson Global Champion Medal; eight-year-old transgender YouTube viral inspiration Ryland Whittington and transgender teen activist Jazz Jennings, both recipients of the annual Harvey Milk Foundation Milan Rozsa Award plus Joey Arias, Peter Clark, Enbar Cohen, Deborah Cox, Mark Denker, Rae Franks, Esq., Judge Rand Hoch, Norm Kent, Elaine Lancaster (James Davis), Robert Runcie, Lillian Tamayo, Fort Lauderdale Commissioner Dean Trantalis, Judge William Thomas and Judge David Young.
Sponsors of Diversity Honors 2017 include Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Levi’s®, Stoli Vodka, DMK – Danne Montague-King, GPR | Goodman Public Relations, Joseph Liberty and Dennis Hottenstein, Mark Griffis, Hotspots magazine, South Florida Gay News, WSVN, Macy’s, Craig Zinn Automotive GRC, Mark’s List, iHeart Media, Ludwig Framemakers, Fast Printz, Lightship Media, Gold Coast magazine and The Miami Foundation.


Tickets are $200 per person for the black-tie optional event. A special photo opportunity with Well- Strung is available for an additional $75. To reserve tickets or for more information, please visit www.DiversityHonors.com.