L.A. Pride Organizers Announce Trio of Grand Marshals for Its 2023 Parade
The Christopher Street West Association announced its trio of grand marshals for its L.A. Pride Parade on June 11.
Legendary queer comedian Margaret Cho will be honored as the Icon Grand Marshal, the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Southern California has been named the Community Grand Mashal, and the late gay actor Leslie Jordan will be honored posthumously as the parade’s Legacy Grand Marshal.
“Christopher Street West is honored and humbled by this year’s three grand marshals,” said Gerald Garth, president of CSW, in a press release. “Each have contributed to the LGBTQ+ community in their own unique ways, furthering our fight for acceptance, equality, and justice.”
Cho said that she was excited to be selected as the Icon Grand Marshal, a recognition that goes to someone “who needs no introduction and achieved major milestones within their career and industry.” CSW said that the five-time Grammy and Emmy nominee has championed causes dear to her for years while continuing to find success in comedy.
“I’m thrilled and incredibly honored to be the Icon Grand Marshal,” Cho shared. “We need this Pride more than ever. I have been attending Pride celebrations since 1978 and this time around the need to celebrate as well as unite is more urgent than it has ever been. Our love is greater than their hate.
CSW said that Jordan will be recognized for his varied career over the last few decades and his dedication to making people laugh. The Emmy-winning actor died last year of a cardiac dysfunction. He was starring in the recently canceled Call Me Kat sitcom before his death. Jordan was well-known for his role as Beverly Leslie in Will & Grace.
“He conquered the international stage and remained an in-demand mainstay as a performer, voice-over artist, fundraiser, spokesperson, out artist, equal rights activist, and all-around Southern Baptist celebutante,” the organization said.
Jana “Cricket” Jordan, Jordan’s sister, said,“This honor further solidifies the positive impact he made in the world, but more importantly for the LGBTQ+ community. His spirit continues to bring love and light.”
The ACLU of SoCal will be celebrated for its influence and dedication to the LGBTQ+ community. In fact, the affiliate helped CSW in putting on the first L.A. Pride Parade. In 1970, the organization joined CSW in a lawsuit against the L.A. Police Commissioner to receive a permit to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in New York City. CSW prevailed and L.A. Pride became the first permitted queer parade in the world.
“For a century, we’ve been on the front lines fighting for people to be their true, authentic selves,” said Hector Villagra, executive director of the ACLU SoCal. “We’re honored to be the Community Grand Marshal and proud to love, live among, and protect LGBTQ Californians.”
The parade route will start at Sunset Boulevard and Highland Avenue heading north before ending at Sunset Boulevard and Cahuenga Boulevard. The parade, which will feature a special drag performance presented by the ACLU SoCal and staged by Morgan McMichaels to music by 14-time Oscar nominee Diane Warren, will air LIVE on long-time LA Pride broadcasting partner KABC/ABC7 on Sunday, June 11 beginning at 11:00 a.m. PDT. It will also air nationally on ABC News Live and Hulu, and wherever viewers stream ABC7 including abc7.com and the ABC7LA mobile app.