Equality Florida Gala

Equality Florida Gala

At a time in history that has seen unprecedented momentum to end anti-LGBT discrimination, Equality Florida expects a record turnout at the upcoming Jacksonville Gala on Saturday, September 27 at the Florida Yacht Club (520 Yacht Club Road, Jacksonville). The Gala will start at 7 p.m.; cocktail attire is requested.Yacht Club

Equality Florida’s annual Jacksonville Gala has been a highlight of the organization’s presence in the area, attracting more than 300 people representative of the area’s diversity.

In 2014 Equality Florida opened a new office in Jacksonville, under the direction of Michael Farmer, Director of Development for Central and North Florida, and managed by Jessica Osborn, Statewide Field Manager. This year’s Gala will be held shortly after our community’s victory in Atlantic Beach — a human rights ordinance including sexual orientation and gender identity was passed there, and a push by opponents to have it reconsidered failed.

The Gala will feature an open bar, delicious hors d’oeuvres, live music, a fabulous silent auction and an exciting program including a state of the state address by Chief Executive Officer Nadine Smith. Smith will recognize two Voice for Equality honorees and an Equality Means Business honoree at this event.

Maria Mark

2014 Voice for Equality Honoree
Maria Mark, Atlantic Beach City Commissioner

Commissioner Mark’s courage to step up and lead the effort to pass a Human Rights Ordinance and her tenacious commitment to staying the course are the reasons Atlantic Beach has become the first city in Duval County to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.


John Delaney

2014 Voice for Equality Honoree
John Delaney, President of the University of North Florida and Former Jacksonville Mayor

President Delaney has been an inspiring emissary who has brought many of Jacksonville’s top republican business and opinion leaders into the bipartisan campaign for LGBT equality. As one of Jacksonville’s most popular and admired leaders, his visibility in this fight  has led a huge shift in public opinion in favor of equal opportunity.

Patrick Geraghty

2014 Equality Means Business Honoree
Patrick Geraghty, Chair and CEO for Florida Blue

Under Patrick Geraghty’s leadership, Florida Blue has set the standard for providing equal opportunity for its LGBT employees, and the company has been a bold advocate for ensuring those same protections and support for all Floridians.  Patrick has proven that corporate leaders are among our most influential advocates delivering the message that equality is not only the right thing to do but also vital to our economy.

Tickets cost $100, or $35 with a valid student identification card. 100% of the proceeds directly benefit Equality Florida’s important work, including our work to pass pro-equality laws in Jacksonville and northeast Florida and our lawsuit to bring the freedom to marry to Florida.

For questions or to purchase tickets, visit eqfl.org/jacksonvillegala or call (407) 376-4801.