Our Mission and Purpose

Christopher Street West’s mission is to create safe and inclusive spaces for self-expression, to inspire an authentic sense of activism in the continued fight for equality, and to celebrate the unique heritage and diverse cultures of Los Angeles’ LGBTQ+ community and its allies.

About Christopher Street West Association

Christopher Street West (CSW), a 501(c)3 non-profit, organized the world’s first permitted parade advocating for gay rights on June 28, 1970 as a response to and in commemoration of the Stonewall Rebellion on Christopher Street in New York City the year prior. Since then, we have built a rich history as an active voice for the LGBTQ+ community across the Greater Los Angeles metropolitan area. And today, we continue to produce the LA Pride Parade and Festival every June in the City of West Hollywood. We also organize a number of events throughout the year with our non-profit, philanthropic, community, and corporate partners.

Donate to LA Pride

LA Pride is a non-profit organization governed by an unpaid, professional volunteer Board of Directors, assisted by numerous volunteers and committee members. When you donate to LA Pride, in any amount, you support our mission to provide quality, positive experiences to hundreds of thousands of people each year.

Donate

Board of Directors

With years of experience, our all-volunteer Board of Directors made up of community leaders with diverse backgrounds, skills, talents and visions. Meet the team below.

Steve Andrews

Steve Andrews

Board Secretary

Craig Bowers

Craig Bowers

Board Member

Mike Carriere

Mike Carriere

Board Treasurer

Chris Classen

Chris Classen

Board President

Brian Pendleton

Brian Pendleton

Board Member

Raul Rios

Raul Rios

Board Member

Marquita Thomas

Marquita Thomas

Board Member

Will DeSmit

Will DeSmit

Board Member

Shayne Thomas

Shayne Thomas

Board Member

Erica Meyer

Erica Meyer

Board Member

Board Emeritus

Rodney Scott

Rodney Scott

President Emeritus

Directors Emeritus:

Persons who have served on the board for at least four years may be elected as directors emeritus, a lifetime advisory position.

  • Sharon Donning
  • James Fields
  • Hope Hindrichs
  • Danny Levy
  • Jerry Lovell
  • Raymond Rector
  • Pat Rocco
  • N. Lee Waddell
  • Irene Williams
  • Michael Yates

Casa Del Sol

Casa Del Sol is a prime example of how Christopher Street West directly impacts the community. It is a joint project between Aids Project Los Angeles, and CSW to provide low-income housing for people with HIV/AIDS.

CSW purchased the Hollywood property in 1988 and it opened for occupancy in 1993, following various bureaucratic issues and renovation needs. It remains a precedent-setting undertaking, laying the groundwork for all future independent living programs for persons with HIV/AIDS. Casa Del Sol was groundbreaking as it was the first low-income housing project for people with HIV/AIDS to receive HUD funding.

Aids Project Los Angeles (APLA) manages the property, screening prospective tenants and providing ongoing tenant advocacy and support.
CSW holds the mortgage and pays the yearly mortgage interest on the property.

LA Pride Press

Keep up with the latest organization and festival news.

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LA PRIDE Values

BE INSPIRED

We are all activists.

LA Pride was founded upon the spirit of activism – and today, continues in the footsteps of its founders. We believe in inspiring today’s generation to come together as a community and take a stand for acceptance and equality. Our goal is to empower the LGBTQ+ community and its allies with essential information, education, resources, events, content, and communications so that everyone within our community can not only find their unique voice, but also use it to inspire positive change for all.

BE UNITED

We are one community.

There are people from all walks of life who make up the LGBTQ+ community. This incredible diversity has enabled the growth of niche communities – around shared lifestyles, cultures, identities, beliefs, and values – ensuring that every person has a safe space to call “home” within the LGBTQ+ spectrum. We believe the vibrant diversity of our community is our greatest strength. And when we act as a single community, real change happens. This is the true meaning of Pride, and it’s something we celebrate in hearts and minds 365 days per year.

BE AWARE

We must never forget our past.

While it may be true that our community has come a long way since the Stonewall Rebellion in 1969, there is still a tremendous amount of work to do. We believe that it’s absolutely critical for everyone in the LGBTQ+ community alongside our straight allies to acknowledge, celebrate, and learn from our rich history of social revolution. Constantly being aware our past helps to inform our future, making it better and more accepting for generations to come

BE MINDFUL

We must support each other.

It’s easy to forget the impact we can make on each other’s lives. Acting as a single community means being mindful and accepting of the diversity that exists within our community. For this reason, we believe that we must always be kind to ourselves, to our friends, to our colleagues, and to those we see as different from ourselves because, in doing so, we will make our community stronger and more able to overcome the political, social, and cultural headwinds that we will inevitably face as we continue to fight for our rights.

BE TRUE

We must be our most authentic selves.

Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community means having the freedom to be our true selves at all times. That’s why we believe it’s our responsibility to create safe spaces for self-expression, understanding that acknowledging, accepting, and embracing our differences are what make us stronger as both individuals and as a community. Bringing our true selves to everything we do is how we each play an important part in standing up for what we believe in as a community as well as what we want to inspire in the hearts and minds of those around us.

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