AV resident wins “Good Neighbor” Equality Award

Sanie D. Andres

LOS ANGELES – Equality California (EQCA) has named Sanie D. Andres the recipient of its first-ever “Good Neighbor” Equality Award recognizing excellence in grassroots lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender activism.

A marriage and family therapist, Andres is president of the board of the newly launched OUTreach Center, the only LGBTQ resource in California’s High Desert. Sanie will receive this honor Saturday (Aug. 18) at the 2012 Los Angeles Equality Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

The Good Neighbor award is the first Equality Award whose honoree is determined not by EQCA but through nomination by grassroots community members.

Andres, a gay Filipino-American raised in Antelope Valley, was nominated by his peers for his leadership in building coalitions, community empowerment, and inspiring individuals of all ages to engage in making Los Angeles County’s northernmost communities safer for their LGBTQ residents.

Under his direction, the OUTreach Center, formerly the AV GLBT Community Center, has gained new visibility and has opened up dialogue with community leaders that has positively influenced the way many Antelope Valley residents feel about equality for all.

In 2009, Andres founded The Out Project; a program that serves more than 40 LGBT youth weekly and that was honored by the Stonewall Young Democrats at the 2011 Harvey Milk Awards.  He has inspired teens to launch Gay-Straight Alliance clubs at several Antelope Valley high schools, and spearheaded a protest of hate crime graffiti in Lancaster that brought out more than 120 allies – the area’s largest-ever community mobilization on LGBTQ issues.

As Antelope Valley’s Pride Committee Chair, Andres has grown the annual event from a 500-attendee picnic to a full-day celebration with 10 major sponsors and more than 2,300 attendees on the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds.

Under Andres’ leadership, The OUTreach Center is organizing a launch of a PFLAG chapter in Antelope Valley, coordinating a transgender support group, and continuing to sponsor LGBT-related human rights trainings for local educators.  His collaboration with the Teachers’ Association of Lancaster led to the first-ever school climate survey in Lancaster, and resulted in a grant to jointly develop LGBT literature kits for local classrooms and libraries.

Andres is a clinical supervisor at Penny Lane in Lancaster and a registered art therapist. He lectures on cultural competency and LGBT issues in foster care through his role as adjunct faculty at National University and Antelope Valley College, and he has served as a board member of the Lesbian and Gay Psychotherapy Association.

He also currently serves as secretary on the City of Lancaster’s Museum and Public Art Foundation board.

(Information via press release from the OUTreach Center.)

  38 comments for “AV resident wins “Good Neighbor” Equality Award

  1. really
    August 23, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    Activism-: a doctrine or practice that emphasizes direct vigorous action especially in support of or opposition to one side of a controversial issue.

    I commend this man for his involvement, however I sometimes become frustrated by the formation of groups who cater to one group of society. I think often times these groups start out with
    noble intentions, but often morph into something not so good. I think at a certain point these groups begin manipulating the people they were formed to protect. Just look at the NAACP, LA RAZA, NOW .

    Also I am all for equality but I think there is a lot of effort being put forth for 4% of the population. I think people who are gay have rights, just as the rest of us have the right to feel uneasy when a gay couple is making out in a public place.

    • Hector
      August 23, 2012 at 8:54 pm

      Agree. Nobody can intelligently argue with that. Operative word: “intelligently”.

    • Matt K.
      August 23, 2012 at 11:16 pm

      What about when a heterosexual couple is making out in public? Does that bother you? Or, how about people just have a little bit of class and get a room?

      • really
        August 23, 2012 at 11:31 pm

        It depends, is it a loving peck or a makeout session? People making out in public bugs me. And I react the same when its a gay or straight couple making out. My own personal observation is that I have never seen a gay couple give one another a peck, I have seen on several occasions gay couples making out in public. It seems as though they are doing it as a statement, like hey look at us we are gay and want everybody to know it and accept it.

        • Matt K.
          August 23, 2012 at 11:45 pm

          I agree with you.

          Maybe I’m prude, but I’ve always thought people who make out in public are obnoxious.

          I feel like asking them, “…Is your relationship so fragile and/or questionable that you feel the need to make a statement by making out in public?”

  2. LOL
    August 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    Damn, some people on here are stuck in the 1930’s.

    Congrats Sanie, you deserve it!

    • Hector
      August 19, 2012 at 6:09 pm

      Stuck in the 70s…..things were much better then.

  3. August 19, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    It’s fantastic feeling the cool winds of change starting to blow in the Antelope Valley! Congratulations Sanie for the work you do and the young people you inspire. You’re vision for The OUTreach Center and your courage in the Antelope Valley are changing the way people think about what it means to be Queer living in a conservative area. Your bravery is truly commendable and you should be proud.

  4. Kje
    August 17, 2012 at 10:22 pm

    Congrats Sanie! Ace, why dont you shut your homophobic ass up! Must you always make rude comments. Get a life and stay out of everyone elses! Your stupid comments get old and boring. What did the gays ever do to you? I think you just need to come out of the closet already, lol. Those who protest…

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