The Atlanta Pride Committee, fresh from opening their drive to recruit volunteers for the festival this fall, now wants the public’s help for another key piece of the three-day event: Selecting grand marshals for the annual parade.
The committee will pick two grand marshals from among the pool of nominations submitted by the public. The nominating process opened Monday and lasts until Aug. 27.
The Pride parade Grand Marshal positions are among the highest honors bestowed by Atlanta’s LGBT community. Nominations should be selected based on commitment and outstanding contributions to the community. Areas of contribution to be considered are social, political, health, child welfare, education and business. Other types of contributions to be considered are mentoring, volunteerism, generosity, leadership roles and civic pride.
The parade’s grand marshals will consist of one male and one female, must be Georgia residents who identify with at least one of the letters in the alphabet soup that describes our community, and may not be a candidate for an elected position.
To get a feel for what makes a grand marshal, consider some of those selected in the past: Rep. Karla Drenner (2001), radio personality Melissa Carter (2002), Jim Marks and Bubba D. Licious (2003), Atlanta Lesbian Health Initiative Executive Director Linda Ellis (2003), LGBT activist Mary Anne Adams (2004), Outwrite owner Philip Rafshoon (2005), Rev. Antonio Jones (2006) and transgender playwright Scott Turner Schofield (2008).
Pride says it will announce its grand marshal picks by Sept. 1. Pride is set for Oct. 30 to Nov. 1.