Local community members make list of 2020 most influential LGBTQ+ Georgians

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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A handful of Coastal Georgians are being recognized for their pride and contributions to the LGBTQ+ community.

OUT Georgia Business Alliance released their first list of the top 100 most influential LGBTQ+ Georgians.

The list includes Savannah Alderman Kurtis Purtee, Dusty Church of the First City Pride Center, Angie Celeste Snow of Tybee Equality Fest and local business owner Cale Robert Hall.

Those honored were recognized for their contributions to their local communities and include stars like actress and activist Angelica Ross and rapper, singer/songwriter Lil Nas X.

Purtee said the news came as a total surprise but he’s just happy to know the work he’s doing is being recognized.

“I’m just doing what I know how to do, and that’s basically advocate and work and speak my mind as I always have,” he said. “So for me, it’s a very humbling experience.”

For Snow, she says she’s come a long way from organizing an annual event to creating an organization that works to advocate for residents on Tybee Island all year long.

She feels there’s a disconnect between knowing the needs of a member of your community or family member who’s LGBTQ+ and feels having more community conversations can bridge that gap.

“If you’re knowing our stories and you’re knowing trans stories, then it’s easier to say, ‘Oh, that’s a struggle I struggle with,'” she said.

Throughout the pandemic, Church and the other volunteers at the First City Pride Center have worked to improve their services to continue to provide aid to those who need it in the community.

Church says this recognition is important because it gives the greater community a chance to understand the unique needs of their LGBTQ+ members.

“The need for a community center where you can just be who you are and be around other people who share your similar experiences is lifesaving,” he said.

See the full list of this year’s honorees here.

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