The cause: Supporting LGBTQ youth. In just 18 months, Equality Florida’s Safe and Healthy Schools Project ( has begun work with 59 of Florida’s 67 school districts, training thousands of district leaders in best practices with LGBTQ youth as well as helping districts develop strategies and guidelines for counteracting bullying and affirming LGBTQ students.

The date: Sunday, April 15 @ 5:30pm

The venue: Lake Pavilion, 101 South Flagler Drive, West Palm Beach

The look: Beach chic (think: bermudas and bow ties)

The talent: DJ Karin Ward

The spread: Open bar; culinary delights by Grilled Cheese Gallery, Hutton Seafood, and Another Perfect Party

The honorees:

State Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith

During his 2016 election campaign in District 49, Smith achieved national prominence for his outspoken support of victims of the Pulse nightclub killings. As governmental affairs manager for Equality Florida, he also helped raise $10 million for Pulse victims and family members. Since winning election, Smith has made a significant impact as the first out gay Latino in the Florida legislature. Recently, when Publix excluded the HIV-prevention medication PrEP from its employee health plan, Smith met with management and convinced them to reverse course.

Sandra Saladrigas

As long-time Gala co-chair, Saladrigas’ tireless advocacy for Equality Florida and its programs has helped the organization increase its network of volunteers and supporters in Palm Beach.

Vita Nova, Inc.

For more than a decade, Vita Nova has served the needs of Palm Beach County’s LGBTQ youth facing homelessness and transitioning from foster care. Through its innovative vision that includes community partnerships and peer support, Vita Nova has developed a proven track record of helping these youth to beat the odds when it comes to graduation from high school, matriculation, employment and housing.

The donation: Individual tickets, $150:; sponsorships: