PFlag National to Honor Marriott International at Gala


straight-for-equalityThe nation’s largest organization uniting families, allies, and people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ)-will honor Marriott International with the Straight for Equality in the Workplace award at the Seventh Annual Straight for Equality Awards gala.

Straight for Equality-a national outreach and education project created by PFLAG National- invites, educates, and engages the next generation of allies joining together with LGBT people in the effort to achieve equality for all. Straight for Equality awards are presented to individuals who are transforming the way that LGBTQ people are understood and treated, using their talents and platforms in their respective fields to empower others to become engaged and outspoken allies for fairness and inclusion.

In a year that has seen huge strides forward in equality for people who are LGBTQ, Marriott has been at the forefront in their area of expertise.

As a steadfast partner with PFLAG National, Marriott has been especially prized for its enduring dedication to inclusion, acceptance and welcome for all. The company shows its commitment to LGBTQ equality in countless ways including its recognition as one of the very first hotel leaders to offer same-sex partner benefits beginning in 1999. And last year, they launched their popular and award-winning #LoveTravels campaign, expressing Marriott’s commitment to make every traveler feel comfortable being who they are, everywhere they travel.

“Marriott has been a leader in championing basic fairness for all, including LGBTQ employment nondiscrimination,” said PFLAG National Executive Director Jody Huckaby. “They stood with PFLAGers in opposing Arizona’s hurtful anti-LGBTQ legislation, and are vocal supporters and advocates for marriage equality. We are proud to honor our longtime partners and supporters at Marriott…and in one of their own beautiful properties-the New York Marriott Marquis, where we have held this event since its inception in 2007!”

In 2013, Apoorva Gandhi, Marriott VP for Multicultural Affairs, served as co-chair for the Fifth Annual PFLAG Straight for Equality Gala, sharing his own story of bullying which moved the room of more than 500 people. This year, Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson will accept the award. Gandhi was thrilled to learn of the honor.

“PFLAG embodies the values that inspire all of us at Marriott,” said Gandhi. “This special award reflects our longstanding dedication to equality, inclusion and respect for all of our guests and associates.”

The Seventh Annual Straight for Equality Awards Gala will be held on Monday, March 30th in New York City at the New York Marriott Marquis Hotel, with a VIP reception sponsored by KPMG, which was honored with the Straight for Equality in the Workplace Award in 2012. The evening’s other honorees are NY Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist, and TRANSPARENT creator Jill Soloway.

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