In addition to the winners named at the Pride Legacy Awards ceremony on June 18, the Vancouver Pride parade’s grand marshals for 2016 were announced by Vancouver Pride board member Michelle Fortin.
Each marshal received a medallion donated by Benée Rubin Jewellery Design.
Fortin explained that Rubin has been donating jewellery for Pride’s grand marshals for over a decade. Rubin is the niece of activist Robin Tyler, who was a Vancouver Pride parade grand marshal 25 years ago and, with her spouse Diane Olson, sued state of California for same-sex couples to marry and became the first same-sex couple to marry.
This year’s role model marshal is Sher Vancouver founder Alex Sangha. Sher Vancouver is a social and resource group of LGBTQ South Asians and their friends. Sangha has also contributed commentaries to the Georgia Straight.
Syrian refugee and activist Danny Ramadan was chosen as this year’s local hero marshal. Ramadan, who was nominated for the Yellow Legacy Award for volunteer of the year, has spoken at numerous local public events and in interviews with the media about issues pertaining to refugees.
Trans Alliance Society chair Morgane Oger, who also won the inaugural Pride Legacy trans-activist award, was named as the national hero marshal. Oger is also a member of the City of Vancouver’s LGBTQ2+ Advisory Committee and the secretary of the Vancouver Board of Education’s District Parent Advisory Committee.
The posthumous hero marshal will be Charity, who Fortin said contributed numerous volunteer hours to the community. Charity was represented at the event by her partner Dino.