1990-reel-prideA small, fearless group of Fresno State students – members of the Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Student Alliance – launched an “International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival” in conjunction with National Coming Out Day.

It showcased 11 films (“Damned If You Don’t,” “Domestic Blues,” “Dry Kisses Only,” “Flames of Passion,” “I Need a Man Like You to Make My Dreams Come True,” “Kim,” “Mala Noche,” “On Guard,” “The Mark of Lilith,” “Urinal” and “Wrestler: East of the Wall”); from 5 countries (Australia, Canada, UK, USA and West Germany); throughout 6 days (Oct. 7-12, 1990).

Since then, the student group has become United Student Pride; the film festival has moved off-campus; and the event is now known as the “Fresno Reel Pride Film Festival.”On the eve of our 24th Annual Film Festival, Fresno Reel Pride salutes our Co-founders – Ken Fries and Peter Robertson; plus founding GLBSA Officers Brad Seiple, Matt Cunningham, Durk Hubel, Manoj Mehta and Caren Thomas; as well as founding advisors Sari Dworkin and Caryn Horowitz.

We also our salute past and present Festival Directors – Jeff Robinson, Dave Houck, Jon Carroll and James Figueroa – plus former and current board of directors, sponsors, donors, festival pass holders, volunteers and audience members. (2013 Board of Directors: Sarrah Soza, Peter Robertson, Ralph Gomez, Jon Caroll, Chris Dodd, Kathleen Reyna, Justin Kamimoto and Augie Blancas).

As we pause and reflect on the past 24 years, it’s been a daunting and miraculous journey – for our GLBTQ community, for our allies, for our nation – and for the Fresno Reel Pride Film Festival. Thank you for your courage and your vision. Because of each of you, we exist today. And, we’re all the better for it.

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24th Annual Film Festival
Sept. 18 – 22, 2013


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