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    Communities of Color and Media

    Our work centers and serves the most marginalized voices in the community…

    GLAAD’s Communities of Color and Media Department is a leading force driving equitable and accurate representation of Black LGBTQ+ people, people living with HIV (PLWH), and queer communities of color in the realm of entertainment and media.

    Our work centers and serves the most marginalized voices in the community, reaching them through both intimate and large-scale programming designed to foster community, connection, and fellowship. 

    Through consultation, media training, social campaigns, local activations, and curated events, the Communities of Color and Media Team aims to accelerate equality and acceptance while elevating and amplifying the voices of Black LGBTQ+ communities and queer communities of color everywhere.

    Black Queer Creative Summit

    The Black Queer Creative Summit powered by Gilead Sciences was a first-of-its-kind in-person event, specifically geared towards empowering, educating, and training emerging Black LGBTQ+ creatives across five sectors of the entertainment industry. This Summit spotlights, celebrates, and curates professional growth opportunities for Black LGBTQ+ creative leaders, fostering a pipeline for the next generation of Black LGBTQ+ artists through event keynotes, fireside chats, workshops, and mentorship opportunities.

    Meet the Inaugural 2023 Black Queer Creative Summit Cohort >>

    BQCS Photo Gallery

    Accelerate Acceptance

    Your gift allows us to accelerate equality and acceptance while elevating and amplifying the voices of Black LGBTQ+ communities and queer communities of color everywhere.

    Equity in Entertainment Initiative ( EMEI ) Equity in Entertainment Initiative ( EMEI )

    In 2022, GLAAD launched the Equity in Entertainment Initiative ( EMEI ) created by DaShawn Usher, the Director of GLAAD’s Communities of Color and Media department, along with Associate Director Julian J. Walker and Associate Kayla Thompson. The initiative — which is also supported by Gilead Sciences — is designed as a pipeline program to help address, and begin to resolve, the existing gap in equitable representation within entertainment.

    This three year experience will support a different group of Black LGBTQ+ creatives across various disciplines, with the first year’s cohort made up of short form filmmakers, second year focused on music artists, songwriters, producers; and choreographers rounding out the program as part of its third-year creative cohort.





    NEON is a digital content series founded in 2020 by multihyphenate, creative Major Nesby. Its mission is to increase the visibility of Black LGBTQ people. Through teamwork, NEON leverages the power of storytelling and GLAAD’s platform to create multi-dimensional, accurate portraits of the Black LGBTQ experience. As we move forward, it’s crucial to embrace diversity and incorporate various forms of content.

    The NEON team has produced award-winning work that aligns with the collective’s mission. To date they’ve received the following accolades:

    • Winner (Bronze Distinction), Shorty Awards “Branded Series” 2022
    • Winner (Best in Show), FCS Portfolio Awards “Corporate Image” & “Multicultural” 2022
    • Winner, The American Advertising Federation Mosaic Awards 2022

    Since its launch in 2020, NEON has been creating content such as the Legacy Series, Changemakers, and a collaboration with Poptarts. Our aim is to boost the visibility of the Black Queer community across social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube. We accomplish this through diverse content that caters to all age groups, with a particular focus on Generation Z.

    We want to create a wider range of format styles, some of which can be produced in real-time, while still producing award-winning, long-form portrayals of Black Queer life and individuals.

    NEON x GLAAD works together to produce impactful programming geared towards advancing the presence Black History Month Legacy Series video series available via YouTube.

    Black History Month Legacy Series

    Black LGBTQ figures have shaped our history in the United States and abroad. During #BlackHistoryMonth, we’re showcasing current LGBTQ leaders from multiple disciplines as they pay homage to groundbreaking figures of the past.


    Changemaker Series

    “Changemakers” is an intimate four-part video series presented by NEONxGLAAD and Ally which amplifies the stories of local heroes across America, and sends messages of support and inspiration to Black LGBTQ-owned small businesses. View season one and two below.

    Season One

    Episode Details

    Episode 1 spotlights Kingsley Gbadegesin, a first-generation Nigerian-American and a New York–based creator working to advance liberation for the Black community, the queer community, and people of color. Kingsley is the founder and creator behind K.NGSLEY, a Black-owned brand aiming to reclaim and redefine the Black, queer, femme body and to create tangible, direct support to communities in need.

    Season Two

    Episode Details

    The season 2 premiere features the House of Tulip Executive Director, Mariah Moore (she/her). Moore is a Black trans woman who leads New-Orleans based nonprofit organization House of Tulip. House of Tulip provides zero-barrier housing, case management, linkage to care, and community programming to trans and gender nonconforming people in need of a safe place to stay while growing the supply of affordable housing in the area.

    State of HIV Stigma Report

    stay tuned!