Scholarship Awardees Honored at May Meeting

One of our most treasured annual events happened on May 5th, when the PFLAG Denver Scholarship Program awarded $10,000 in scholarships to three very deserving high school students! This was our biggest year yet in terms of award amounts, number of submitted applications, and number of difficult hours the committee put in to decide which applicants would receive our three scholarships!

In front of a packed, excited house, the three 2016 scholarship recipients were introduced and spoke to us about their journeys to arrive where they are today, their leadership experiences, their plans for the future, and how our monetary help will give them a boost into a wonderfully bright future. Both of our top two scholarship donors ̶ Dean Lewallen (all the way from Brooklyn) and Rex O’Neal ̶ were in attendance, as were many of our generous 2016 fundraiser donors, parents of awardees, and a smiling crowd of well-wishers.

Janet and Dean Lewallen introduced Brian Alfredo Pena Guevara, the 2016 recipient of the $5,000 Elinor and Tom Lewallen Memorial Scholarship! Dean delighted us with loving details of his parents’ lifelong accomplishments and how they both would have been so proud of Brian. Supporting same-sex rights was far from popular 38 years ago. But after Janet came out to Elinor and Tom in 1978, they eventually made it a mission to educate people on gay rights. Elinor said in one of her writings, “I chose some of the causes, but the big one – sexual orientation ̶ chose us. We could do no other.” Both Elinor and Tom had a burning desire to share the love of God with all of God’s people; to live out the commandment to love all as brothers and sisters. In their own quiet way (and when necessary not so quiet), their passion for justice for all people has moved us forward. The Scholarship Committee believes that Brian shares these values of justice and action.

Read more about the scholarship winners in our newsletter.

Volunteers needed for Pridefest!

PFLAG Denver is looking for volunteers to participate in Pridefest, June 18th and June19th.   We are in search of 10-12 volunteers to volunteer at the booth from 11-7 pm on Saturday June 18th, and 10-6 pm Sunday June 19th.  We are looking for 2hr commitments from each volunteer, at the booth you will be giving out PFLAG pamphlets during these times as well as answering questions from people who stop at the booth.  If you are interested in participating during the parade on Sunday we can also use some participants.  Please call the PFLAG office at #303-573-5861 or email We look forward to speaking with you!

PFLAG Denver Scholarship Awards Ceremony

Please join us for the 2016 PFLAG Denver Scholarship Awards Ceremony on Thursday, May 5, at 7:30 p.m. in the Community Room behind the CHUN Mansion located at 1290 Williams Street, Denver.

We have doubled the award amounts this year, with our top Elinor and Tom Lewallen Award set at $5,000, and another two scholarships now valued at $2,500 each.

The committee is excited about our 2016 applicants! All applications are currently being evaluated using our rubric, and we have added phone interviews with the top candidates as part of our evaluation process. We had 14 students apply this year, including three straight ally students, two transgender, one gay, and six lesbian students. It gets better and more difficult to make our final choices every year. What a wonderful challenge to have!

All of our 2016 accomplished applicants have expressed themselves in wonderful personal essays that display incredible stories of personal growth, and indicate strong commitment to diversity while demonstrating leadership roles. We look forward to our final recipients speaking to us at the May 5 ceremony, where you can get to know them better and learn about their goals, passions, and influence as they travel into the world to further advance our LGBTQ community.

If our delicious spread of hors d’oeuvres, wine, beer, punch, and sparkling conversation doesn’t lure you in, know that leaving this event will make you feel uplifted and thrilled for the future! Come out and support these wonderful award recipients, see for yourself why the future’s so bright, they’ve gotta wear shades.

The New Families Support Group will meet as usual at 6:30 p.m. and participants are invited to join the awards ceremony at 7:30.