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      39th Anniversary Dinner (2008)      

  In the Fall of each year, Dignity/Los Angeles celebrates the anniversary of its founding in 1969 as the first chapter of Dignity.  In 2008, the chapter's 39th Anniversary Dinner was held on October 11, at Maggiano's Little Italy in The Grove, in Los Angeles.  The chapter's president, Jason, was the master of ceremonies; and the chapter's VP, Saul Farias, made the arrangements for the event. The keynote speaker was Tony Sweet, a gay Christian Gospel singer; and we apologize for having no photo of him delivering his remarks at the event that we can use on this web page.  Below are some candid photos taken at the event.

At each annual Anniversary Dinner, the chapter recognizes long-standing and faithful service to the chapter and the community, particularly by member(s) of the chapter.  Tradtionally, an honoree received a statue of an Archangel to mark the occasion; but in 2008, a banner (that was specially hand-made by member Bill Briggs for the occasion: thank you) was used in honoring long-time member Pedro Ramos, who is shown at the right in the photo above (beside presenter Dirk Farasey, also a member).

The Anniversary Dinner took place shortly before the General Election of 2008; and on the ballot in that election was Prop 8 to ban gay/lesbian marriage. Pictured above is Ché Juan Gonzales Ruddel, a representative of the No On Prop 8 campaign, who gave a briefing on the status of the campaign.

At each Anniversary Dinner, the chapter customarily gives a cash grant to one or more community service organizations, primarily those that assist persons living with HIV/AIDS.  At this dinner, a cash grant of $1,000.00 was given to the Serra Project; and it was accepted by its Executive Director Terry Goddard, II, pictured above at the left, in the company of (left to right) two of his co-workers, Ricardo Alfaro and member Ramón Ortega.

At the dinner, Prop 8 is discussed informally by (left to right) Valley chapter members Sergio and Bob and Ché Juan Gonzales Ruddel, the representative of the No On 8 Campaign.  At the second table (facing the camera, left to right) are members Michael, Aldo, Jerry, Ted, and Patrick.

Some intense discussion by (left to right) member Henry, John, and member Jim. John and Jim are long-time partners and they recently tied the knot in advance of the balloting on Prop 8.

Pictured above, from left to right, are Tom Vos (chapter member and immediate past VP) and Rob Adams (former chapter member) from the Dignity Palm Springs chapter, where he is currently Communications chairperson on its Council.

Pictured above, from left to right, are member Julio, Rob (former member, visiting from the Palm Springs chapter where he is currently Communications chairperson), member Arty, member Jay, and member Keith.

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