Integrity’s Province II Coordinator and NYC-Metro Chapter Steering Committee member Chap James Day was among community leaders honored Wednesday by the Hon. Helen Marshall, President of the Borough of Queens, and other city officials at the annual Queens LGBT Month Celebration at Borough Hall in Kew Gardens.
In addition to his work with Integrity, Chap served as Festival Chair for this year’s Queens Pride celebration on June 4th, featuring special musical guest Martha Wash. He is also the Recording Secretary for the Stonewall Democratic Club of NYC and on the steering committee of Out Astoria, an LGBT community group.
Members of Integrity, both local and national, were pleased but unsurprised by the award. “We can’t say for sure if Chap can take credit for the rainbow that conveniently appeared over the festival, but he has been known to accomplish the seemingly impossible before,” quipped Diocesan Coordinator (Newark) Christian Paolino. “We are glad for Chap’s guidance as we rebuild our chapter and proud of the other work he does in the community.”
“We are so proud that our own Chap Day has been honored in such a manner,” said Matt Haines, Integrity’s Vice-President for Local Affairs. “His dedication to social justice both inside the church, and out in the community, is an inspiration for people trying to turn their own faith into action. Bravo.”
Marshall noted that earlier this month, in a proclamation released by the White House, in recognition of LGBT Month, President Barack Obama called for a re-dedication to an unending task, “the pursuit of a Nation where all are equal, and have the full and unfettered opportunity to pursue happiness and live openly and freely.”
“For 20 years, the ‘borough of nations’ has come together to celebrate our rich diversity and embrace our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. But this year’s parade was especially gratifying given the recent progress we have seen for gay rights,” said City Council member Daniel Dromm, who founded Queens Pride 20 years ago.
Indeed, among the honorees were Janice Velton and Pat Pfirman, one of the first same-sex couples to be married in the borough. In addition, Council Speaker Christine Quinn recently married her partner and Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer is also planning to “tie the knot.”