Known as QUEEROS, our queer hero honorees have driven and inspired positive change through their vision, sacrifices, dedication and activism. QUEEROS to be honored, so far, include Alok Vaid-Menon, Alan Turing, Dennis Peron, Diane Jones, Glamamore!, Hector Xtravaganza, Juanita MORE!, Jose Sarria, Josette Melchor, Leigh Bowery, Mark Bingham, Paul Dillinger, Juanita MORE! and Sylvester.
Illustrations by Colton Long
History has ignored queer folks for as long as it's been recorded, but sometimes we accomplish feats of such depth and wonder that there is no way to be erased. Alan Turing is considered the father of modern computing and artificial intelligence. He helped defeat the Nazi's in WW2 by helping crack their coded messages. Not a day goes by in our modern world that we don't owe Alan for our safety and convenience. While his homosexuality caused him to die chemically castrated, shamed by the governments he assisted, we honor his memory and imagine what the next Turing's of the world will accomplish with the support of the modern world he helped save.
San Francisco has had many Mothers, but few compare to the effortless brilliance that is Glamamore. She is one of the beating hearts of Bay Area drag, as much a master of the lipsynch, as the needle and thread. She has influenced and dressed countless drag queens ever since we snatched her from NYC 3 decades ago. Whether performing on our historic stages, or our most beloved dive bars, an appearance by Glama puts you on a collision course of a lost history you didn’t know you needed, and a present you didn’t know you could love so much. Who else could give birth to Juanita More!?
Dennis Peron shaped what the Bay Area and California has become. A persistent, enthusiastic visionary, Dennis was a medical Marijuana activist at a time when it was unthinkable and futile to imagine decriminalization. He was able to see past the darkness of the AIDS crisis and our fights against cancer, and created a legislation (Proposition 215) that would genuinely help patients of our mostly deadly and painful diseases. In his journey, he changed medicine, law, politics and culture. He opened the doors of perception, and more importantly, empathy.