June is Pride Month, a time to celebrate the work and lives of all those in the LGBTQ community. While there have been huge strides for the community as a whole, oftentimes aspects are dismissed or omitted from the larger conversation from the big screen, media outlets, and in various realms of politics.
To celebrate Pride, here are 17 celebrities that are advocates and use their platform to help bring awareness to LGBTQ community needs. Of course, there are certainly more that can be added to this list if we inclusively add all those that are allies, but these are just 17 that are really doing some amazing work on, and off, the big screen.
1. ROBIN ROBERTS
Robin Roberts is not only a “Good Morning America” anchor, but also a huge advocate for LGBTQ rights as well as openly and publicly out as gay.
2. WANDA SYKES
Not only is Sykes a comedian, but she’s also a strong advocate for gay rights after embracing her homosexuality after seven years of marriage with her husband.
3. LAVERNE COX
Laverne Cox slays our life every time she steps on the scene! Not only does she openly discuss her life pre- and post- operation, but why representation, and Trans representation, matters.
4. RU PAUL
Ru Paul is all things singer, actor, and fabulous drag queen. Aside from his work on the visual side of media, Paul is constantly working to promote LGBT causes.
5. RAVEN SYMONÉ
Symoné openly came out on Twitter and has since used her platform to bring light to issues within the LGBT community.
6. JANET MOCK
Mock has not only discussed and promoted #TransLivesMatter, but has consistently been an outspoken advocate for the LGBT community.
7. ANDRÉ LEON TALLEY
Talley isn’t only one of the most known editors of Vogue but also an advocate for LGBTQ rights and visibility.
8. NICKI MINAJ
Minaj’s sexuality is definitely fluid, at one point claiming she was bisexual. Nonetheless, Minaj constantly promotes visibility for the LGBTQ community, even in alliance.
9. FRANK OCEAN
Frank Ocean’s music not only touched us in a way of new creation, but he openly admitted to loving a man through his music and has constantly helped shape #BlackBoyJoy in new ways.
10. EMIL WILBEKIN
Wilbekin has been noted as one of the most influential gay men (from Out Magazine) and continues to push the conversation around inclusivity in the fashion industry.
11. LENA WAITHE
Waithe has shifted the pendulum in more ways than one, but she mostly serves to show that when one doesn’t see themselves represented, make the platform to shine.
Rihanna has constantly proven her allyship with the LGBT community, not only creating inclusive spaces for all to be welcome, but by publicly standing up against others who have tried to shoot down the idea of inclusivity for all.
13. QUEEN LATIFAH
The rapper and actress has publicly been open about her sexuality for years.
14. JOHN LEGEND
Following President Obama‘s proclamation for same-sex marriage, John Legend showed his gratitude and support of the cause.
15. RUSSELL SIMMONS
Russell Simmons followed suit, showing his support for the proposal of same-sex marriage.
16. KERRY WASHINGTON
Honored with the Vanguard Award at the 2015 GLAAD Media Awards, Kerry noted the need for LGBT representation and storytelling.