Barbara and the late Richard Kormelink, Wyoming, MI and formerly Bay City, receive the Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest award given. They were co-founders of the PFLAG Tri-Cities chapter and have demonstrated a lifelong commitment to help LGBT people. They worked non-stop for over 25 years as advocates and their efforts continue to promote equality, fairness and justice for the LGBT community.
Rev. Rebecca M. Dunn, Saginaw, receives the Pride Award for showing outstanding pride. She founded the first local trans- gender support group, the Perceptions Saginaw Valley Trans- gender Group. She is an ordained New Thought minister, Meta- physical Practitioner and is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for Unity Church of Bay City. She has served on the Board of Trustees for Perceptions Saginaw Valley where she was a part of the creative team behind respect fest, a community celebration of our similarities and differences. Rebecca has been a role model for everybody by just being herself.
Tom Brubaker, Saginaw, receives the Unity Award because he cooperatively works with a multitude of organizations and individuals for the overall betterment of our community. As the outreach coordinator for the AIDS Care Program at BASIS-Sacred Heart Rehabilitation Center, he has raised more than $150,000 for the Michigan AIDS Walk – Bay City, Saginaw and Midland in the past four years. Tom started and facilitates the Perceptions Men’s Discussion Group that meets at the Zauel Library regularly. Tom’s presence and work has affected so many, especially the needy.
Jim Kleinsorge, Bay City, receives the Volunteer Award for his selfless dedication – going far beyond the call of duty. He is always “there” – setting up Friday Dinners, taking minutes, posting messages, greeting people with his beaming smile, etc. He is on the Perceptions Board, serves as secretary and coordinates several committees. Jim tries to make others feel comfortable. Jim’s a keeper.
Garnet Lewis, Freeland, receives the Political Award for too many reasons to list here. She has extensive experience in higher education and political activism. She helped charter the Saginaw Area Democratic Club, is active in Get-Out-The- Vote, and has volunteered with several community groups. Garnet was the first openly-gay Michigan resident to campaign for state representative.
Glenn T. Madigan II, Bay City, receives the Rising Star Award. As President of Bay City Central High School’s Gay-Straight Alliance, he organized the Ally Week, No Name Calling Week, Day of Silence, and other activities. He has educated Central High and the surrounding community about issues facing the lives of LGBT citizens. Glenn recently received the Perceptions Saginaw Valley Scholar- ship.
Robb Wiersum, Saginaw/Grand Rapids, receives the Business Award for his establishment, The Mixx Nightclub and Metro Grille. Robb has actively sponsored several community activi- ties: Symphony’s Maestro & Martinis, AIDS Walks on both sides of the state, and most LGBT functions. “It’s not just
about making a living, it’s about making and supporting your community” says Robb. His Diversion Collection of Bars has helped raise and donate over $750,000 for Michigan Charities and organizations. He has been a wonderful addition to our community.