Dayton’s LGBTQ trailblazers to be honored at awards

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Credit: Tom Gilliam

Those who have greatly contributed to the betterment of life for Dayton’s LGBTQ community will be honored virtually this year.

On Wednesday, Oct. 21 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., the second annual Greater Dayton LGBTQ+ Her/History Rubi Awards will be celebrated and presented virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Awards are named for Dayton’s own Rubi Girls, who serve as an example of community engagement and leadership in the fight to end the negative effects of stigma and discrimination in the LGBT community.

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“We have some amazing honorees whose leadership and vision propelled the local LGBT community to greater visibility and equality. Their stories and accomplishments should always be remembered as part of our community’s evolution toward full equality for LGBTQ people and for making our entire community better for everyone,” said Jerry Mallicoat, chairman of the steering committee for the Greater Dayton LGBTQ Her/History Project.

Last year was the first year for the “Rubi’s” as a part of a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising in New York City.

This year’s honorees include Miami Valley natives, the “Godfather of Modern Gay Fiction” author Victor Banis Jr., and a former New York Metropolitan Opera choreographer and ballet dancer Stuart Sebastian, according to the release. Also, being honored are ally Cassie Barlow, who is a retired Colonel and Base Commander for the 88th Air Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, and Darryl Demure, who is the host and producer of the longest-running LGBT-themed TV talk show in the U.S. on local cable channel DATV.

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The event will also feature a virtual guest appearance from former South Bend, Indiana mayor and presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, who made history as the first openly gay man to win a presidential primary when he won the Iowa caucuses.

“Even though the Rubi Awards will be virtual this year, it’s still an exciting and fun time honoring the great work of individuals and organizations that helped to move Dayton’s LGBT community forward," Mallicoat said.

How to watch

To see the Rubi Awards live, visit or go to Attendees can order a takeaway dinner selection from Wheat Penny on Wayne Avenue prior to the awards and then enjoy the show in the safety and comfort of their own homes, suggested the release.

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