Top LGBTQ+ Influencers & Thought Leaders Transforming the Workplace Through Innovation and Impact

At FindSpark, we’re always proud to celebrate diverse members within our community and beyond.

During Pride Month, we’re especially excited to turn a spotlight on LGBTQ+ folks who are killing it in their respective industries, working to make workplaces more equitable, and being advocates for fellow LGBTQ+ coworkers and community members.

Many of the amazing pros featured below are FindSpark community members or doing internal activism at one of our partner companies

See someone who really inspires you? Connect with them using these tips and be sure to mention you found them through our article!


Anttoni Lopez

Account Executive at Yelp and CEO & Founder, Alpha Male Cosmetics

Instagram

Anttoni is an Elite Account Executive at Yelp NYC and one of their top performers. He also co-leads Outburst, Yelp’s employee resource group for their LGBTQ community. Outside of Yelp, he has another business, @AnttonisBeautyBar which is a team of hair and makeup artist for weddings. 

View this post on Instagram

Omg #AlphaMaleCosmetics is out NOW! Follow @alphamalecosmetics now to see and order products. Last night was the best night of my life well one. I introduced the full line of makeup products for us #Men and it went well. Thank you to everyone who came out and celebrated with me. #Anttonilopez #handsome #makeup #makeupformen #CEO #Boss #entrepreneur #flawless #skin my outfit by #ASOS my tie by @deeworldsbest shoes by @louboutinworld #zaddy #itailian #puertorican #arab #AlpahMale #Newyork #Nyc Thank you to my sponsors @sweetabigail17 @nayloudesigns @tyedbydede Thank you to @the411radio @kingsilvy @fritzyindisguise for red carpet interviews thank you to @nycphotoparty for this amazing step and repeat and photos @glambymannie for doing the makeup for the night #blessed

A post shared by أنطوني لوبيز (@anttoni_lopez) on


Ashlee Marie Preston

Trans Activist and Social Media Influencer

Instagram

Ashlee is the first openly transgender person to be named editor-in-chief of a publication and has run for office in California’s State Assembly. Ashlee also has a significant social media following that’s served as a platform for LGBTQ+ activism.


Adam Ponce

Management Supervisor, Ogilvy | Co-Chair, Ogilvy Pride

LinkedIn |  Instagram

Adam has led brand strategy, content development, lead generation and advertising efforts at agencies like Ogilvy & Mather and McCann. Adam also serves as Co-Chair of Pride at Ogilvy where he helps lead internal activism for LGBTQ+ folks in the company.


Adam J. Kurtz

Artist, Author, Designer, Speaker

Instagram | Twitter

Adam J. Kurtz is an artist and author whose illustrative work is rooted in honesty, humor and a little darkness. His books have been translated into over a dozen languages and his “very personal” work for clients like Strand Bookstore and Urban Outfitters has been featured in the New Yorker, VICE, Adweek and more.


Aritha Wickramasinghe

Head of Legal, National Agency for Public-Private Partnerships, Government of Sri Lanka and Equality Director, iProbono

LinkedIn | Instagram | Twitter

Aritha is an international banking and finance solicitor, a founding trustee of THINK EQUAL, the world’s first global curriculum teaching children social and emotional intelligence and the equality director at iProbono, a legal platform that connects people in need to over 60,000 free lawyers in 39 countries. He was named Financial Times’ No.1 LGBT Future Leader in 2015 alongside Allied Leader, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. In 2017 Attitude Magazine ranked him as the 15th most eligible bachelor in the world!

LGBTQ


Antonio Santini

Award-Winning Director, Mala Mala & Dina

IMDB

Antonio co-directed Mala Mala, a documentary about trans culture in Puerto Rico and Dina, a documentary about a couple on the spectrum that won the Sundance Grand Jury Prize.


Bethany Pagels Minor

Sr. Product Manager, Sprout Social, Inc., and FindSpark Mentor Alumni

Twitter | LinkedIn

Bethany is an experienced Product professional who currently works with the high-growth tech company, Sprout Social. Bethany is also on the Board of Directors of YWCA Metropolitan Chicago.


Benedict Joson

Co-Founder, 260by26

LinkedIn | Twitter

Benedict Joson is a queer Filipinx American activist and social entrepreneur based in Queens, New York. He is working to ensure all children have an inclusive and equitable quality education.


Calvin Stowell

Chief Growth Officer, The Trevor Project and FindSpark Speaker Alumni

Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter

Calvin is an experienced digital marketer with a focus on organic growth. His specialties include social media, product marketing, press, talent, and sales. Currently, Calvin helps save lives with The Trevor Project, a national organization that provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth.


Corey Camperchioli

Actor and writer, Femme, Migraine, Honeybee & others

Instagram

Corey is an actor and writer whose work has explored the nuances and challenges of gender identity. Corey has worked on films including Femme, Migraine, Honeybee, and others that have garnered critical acclaim.


Chad Wagner

Photographer & Co-Founder of the #TearAwayWalls social justice campaign

Instagram

Through photography and activism with the #TearAwayWalls project, Chad has helpedc raise awareness about intolerance and advocate for acceptance.


Christine Vachon

Producer, Still Alice, Carol, Boys Don’t Cry & others

IMDB | Twitter

Christine Vachon is an independent producer whose film highlight LGBTQI issues. Her work won awards at Sundance, the Academy Awards and more.


Crystal Anderson

Operations Manager at Man Repeller

Instagram | LinkedIn

In addition to sharing her supreme style on Instagram, Crystal openly shares her journey and experience with mental illness. She says, “My mental health journey is incredibly and deeply personal but also a story that I have a desire to tell, as I often as I can, in the hopes that someone, somewhere sees even a glimpse of something they can relate to.”

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My mental health journey is incredibly and deeply personal but also a story that I have a desire to tell, as I often as I can, in the hopes that someone, somewhere sees even a glimpse of something they can relate to. Today is the last day of Mental Health Awareness month, but the work is far from over. @manrepeller once again, has allowed me the freedom to tell my truth and I hope that it helps somebody going through it today. Let’s continue talk about it. Hit my DM, email me, text me, I’m here. Remember, dark days come but it’s just a shittty day not a shitty life. Big thanks to @amilli0naire @halemur for giving me the space to tell my truth. Link to story in bio. 🤘🏾

A post shared by Crystal Anderson (@beerbottles_chainsaws) on


Daniela I. Quiroz

Lead Assistant Editor at VICE Media

LinkedIn

Daniela I. Quiroz is a New York City-based editor, director, and videographer with 8 years of filmmaking experience. She is a 2017 Front Page Award winner (The Newswomen’s Club of New York) for her work on the VICE on HBO documentary TRANS YOUTH. She started at VICE as an assistant editor in 2015 and has since been credited as additional editor, finishing editor, and/or editor on 6 episodes. Her broadcast television debut as an editor was for END OF THE EU? in season 5 of the series.


Diana Morgan

Search Marketing Coordinator at Situation Interactive

Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter

Diana works at the cornerstone of live entertainment and digital marketing–exactly where her passions lie. Notably, she moved up from being an intern at Situation Interactive to being a full-time Search Marketing Coordinator, a testament to her talent and hustle.


Edwin (Gino) Raagas

Assistant Director, NYU School of Professional Studies

Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter

Edwin is an Assistant Director and Career Coach at NYU School of Professional Studies and long-time Advisor for FindSpark. Edwin is passionate about early career development, experiential education, and can be found building connections within the LGBTQ and Filipino-American communities.


Estelle Caswell

Video Maker, Vox.com

LinkedIn | Twitter

Estelle is a motion graphics designer at Vox Media. Before joining Vox, she worked at APCO Worldwide where she developed motion graphics for social media campaigns and corporate communications. She’s also produced and directed documentary short films and PSAs that focus on social justice and cultural issues. Her projects have included work with the Step Up Women’s Network, the Jesuit Restorative Justice Initiative and the New Orleans Jazz Restoration Society.


Graci Harkema

Manager, Inclusion & Diversity, TEKsystems

Twitter | LinkedIn

Graci is passionate about creating a safe and inclusive environment where employees can bring their whole selves to work and have the opportunity to reach their potential. She remarks that being an LGBTQ professional in an open and inclusive work environment and having the support of strong leaders at TEKsystems have allowed her to live authentically and perform well.


Jennicet Gutiérrez

Co-founder of La Familia and transgender rights and immigrant rights activist

Instagram | Twitter

Jennifer co-founded La Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement, the only national organization that addresses, organizes, educates, and advocates for the issues most important to the LGBTQ and Latino communities. Jennicet was also honored as one of Out Magazine’s Out 100.


Joseph Duggan Lyons

Digital Writer, Marketer and Organizer

LinkedIn | Twitter | Instagram

Joseph was elected to the board of Rainbow Rose, a Europe-wide LGBTQI rights NGO called that works with the European Parliament and member organizations across the continent to move politicians to support equal rights. Joseph was also the program director of the LGBTQI human rights conference Madrid Summit at World Pride last summer.


Kurt Fulepp

Global Chief Product Officer, AccuWeather Inc.

LinkedIn | Instagram

Kurt leads Product at AccuWeather. Before this, he held several senior positions at TIME, AOL and Bing. He’s also a board alum at Hetrick Martin and an adjunct professor at NYU.


Kristen McCallum

Founder & CEO, SafeWordSociety

LinkedIn

Through her work at SafeWordSociety, Kristen helps amplify the voices of LGBTQIA+ people of color. SafeWordSociety is a QTPOC+ visibility company that works to spotlight members and allies within the community to ensure that authentic narratives reach even its most vulnerable members.

LGBTQ+ influencers


Mackenzie Kruvant

Content and Social Media, Heyday

LinkedIn  | Twitter

Mackenzie helps brands navigate and find their audiences in the digital space with content and social media consulting. Before managing Social Media and Content Strategy at Heyday, Mackenzie was a Social Media Producer at NBC and Senior Editor & Senior Social Strategist at Buzzfeed.

LGBT influencers





 


Maria Akay

Director, New York City Independent Film Festival

LinkedIn  | Instagram

Maria’s role in the NYC Independent Film Festival over the past 3 years has allowed her to put a greater focus on Womxn, Latinx, and LGBTQ+ stories that were otherwise overlooked in previous years of programming.


Meredith Talusan

Senior Editor, THEM

LinkedIn | Twitter

Meredith Talusan is an award-winning journalist and author who is also Senior Editor for them. Meredith has written features, essays, and opinion pieces for many publications, including The Guardian, The Atlantic, VICE, Matter, Backchannel, The Nation, Mic, BuzzFeed News, and the American Prospect. In 2017, Meredith received the GLAAD Media and Deadline Awards and has contributed to several books, including Nasty Women: Feminism, Resistance, and Revolution in Trump’s America.


Matt Stevenson

Executive Director, Condé Nast (WIRED, GQ, Golf Digest, and Pitchfork)

LinkedIn

Matt’s passion lies in growing businesses through innovative technologies and storytelling. His specialties include Branded Content, Interactive Digital Media, Social Media, Business Operations, Brand Building and Personal Health


Michael Venturiello

Founder & Lead Tour Guide, Christopher Street Tours

Instagram

Michael founded Christopher Street Tours: New York City’s premiere experience for free LGBTQ History Walking Tours.

Christopher Street Tours began as a personal passion project in 2016 and grew to provide two unique experiences for visitors: LGBTQ History Walking Tours and Private Group Tours. Their mission is to make LGBTQ history accessible to all.


Nate Warden

Product Manager, Hudson MX and the Founder & President of Coming Out

LinkedIn

Coming Out is a platform for hosting the world’s LGBTQA coming out stories and organizing them in a way that allows anyone to find relatable content. Nate also helps build software for media companies at Hudson MX, an early-stage startup.


Oscar Díaz

Experiential Manager at Buzzfeed

LinkedIn | Twitter

Oscar Diaz is a multimedia photojournalist, community organizer, and queer brown immigrant educator. They can often be found marching through the streets, coordinating events, and always @oscmdiaz on the web. Fun fact: They taught & facilitated workshops in Havana, Cuba for a group of entrepreneurs passionate about social media marketing, leadership & management!


Phillip Picardi

Chief Content Officer, LGBTQ Magazine THEM, and Teen Vogue.

Twitter

Phillip spearheads digital operations at THEM Magazine and Teen Vogue. Phillip has also been Digital Editorial Director, where he launched Teen Vogue’s wellness and political coverage, successfully catapulting the brand from 2 to 12 million unique monthly visitors in under two years. Before that, he was Senior Beauty Editor at Refinery29.


Paolo Lorenzana

Editor In Chief at TEAM Magazine

Instagram

Paolo is the publisher of TEAM (www.teammag.ph), a magazine for gay Filipino men that’s soon transitioning into an LGBTQIA+ publication, as well as the editor of GLU, a free queer magazine distributed at a number of HIV clinics in Metro Manila.

View this post on Instagram

Bumubutch.

A post shared by Paolo Lorenzana (@paololorenzana) on


Sam Escobar

Deputy Director, Allure

Instagram

Sam manages the digital editorial team of Allure Magazine on strategizing, conceptualizing, and executing innovative, socially responsible beauty and wellness content. In 2018, Sam was named one of Brooklyn Magazine’s “30 Under 30.”

View this post on Instagram

The feelings I’ve held towards my arm hair have changed profoundly over time: first disinterest, then mild insecurity that grew into a deep hatred fueled by offhanded comments and strangers’ stares, ones the givers were likely unaware of. At 28, I’ve felt affectionately toward this part of my body for just a couple of years. Arm hair is different than leg or underarm or even pubic hair in that it’s a subject that is mostly absent from the mainstream body-positivity conversation despite its significance to every person I know for whom it’s a prominent feature. It’s been a tumultuous but evolving relationship, and one that I was so thrilled to explore for @allure’s newest portrait series. Check it out (the link’s in my bio) to read interviews with six women and myself on the subject. ♥️ — Photos: @heatherhazzan Words: @hayleymac212 Fashion: @calvy.click Hair: @junyahair Makeup: @deannamelluso Nails: @yukie_miyakawa_nails Prop Stylist: @gozdeeker Tech: @nowserving Photo Assistant: @kdegeer Models: @ccveras, @nicoledellert, @ayqakhan, @avenerable, @_hannahchoi, and @pkv15 Special thanks to @kelly.bales, @_hannahchoi, @warriorheart, and everyone else who made this so amazing. 💗 I feel better now.

A post shared by Sam Escobar (@theonewithbluehair) on


Steven Gianaca

Associate Creative Director, Bonnier Corporation

LinkedIn | Instagram

Outside of work, Steve is the VP of Geeks OUT, a national non-profit that rallies, promotes, and empowers the queer geek community all over the country. In that capacity, Steven produces Flame Con, the world’s largest LGBTQ comic con.


Samy Nemir Olivares

Writer. Activist. Artist Director of Queeramisú- Latinx Equality in America

Twitter

Samy is an award-winning communications pro experienced in social media, news production, documentary, PR, and politics. Samy’s work has appeared in The New York Times, Huffington Post, Metro, NY1 and others and his story about the struggles of the LGBT Youth of Color in Boston won an award from The Association of LGBT Journalists.


Yosub Kim

Director, Content Strategy, GIPHY and FindSpark Speaker Alumni

Instagram | Twitter

Yosub is a leader and innovator at GIPHY,  where he crafts the strategy that circulates GIPHY’s massive library of content throughout the digital space. His background is in entertainment building brands like Bravo, AMC Networks, and All Def Digital. He has been featured on NBC News, Huffington Post and CheddarTV for his work on digital representation at GIPHY. He spends most of his time with his corgi, Instagram: @sadeyesarchie.

Know other LGBTQ influencers we should add to the list? Share in the comments to let our community know! Cheers to diversity, inclusion and, of course, Pride.

 

 

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