ECCO 25th Anniversary Awards Dinner was a blast!

Last night’s ECCO 25th Anniversary Awards Dinner was a blast!  San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom gave a rousing speech about his personal experience marrying gay couples.  But for me the highlight was speaking to Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez before the Dinner.  She was there signing copies of her book, “Dream in Color.”  The proceeds went to Libreria Martinez, which could use the help.

Sanchez didn’t have to be there.  Her oldest brother is missing, as we reported earlier this week, after having an apparent boating accident off the coast of Catalina Island.  But Sanchez promised to be there and so she bravely kept her word.  I appreciated being able to offer my condolensces in person.  I am very much looking forward to reading her book!  She did leave a short time afterwards to go be with her mom, who understandably is having a very hard time dealing with the loss of her oldest child.  Again, my thoughts and prayers are with the Sanchez family at this terrible time of loss.

I sat at Susan Freeze’s table which featured some of my favorite local politicians, including Fullerton Council Woman Pam Keller and Costa Mesa Council Woman Katrina Foley.  Commie Girl was there too which was a bit awkward since I brought our webmistress, Sarah Spinosa, with me.  But they both behaved themselves and they both were quite stunning.  I also met Fullerton City Council Candidate Karen Haluza’s campaign manager who reports that her campaign is doing great.

There was a big Santa Ana presence at the dinner.  Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez was there and her peer on the Council, Sal Tinajero, bought a full page ad in the dinner program.  Former Santa Ana Councilman Jose Solorio, who is now an Assemblyman, also made an appearance and State Senator Lou Correa, who represents Santa Ana, bought a full page ad in the dinner program.  And SAUSD Trustee John Palacio was there too.  The only SAUSD candidate who attended was Irene Ibarra.  Not sure what happened to the rest of them…

I also ran into Rancho Santiago Community College District Trustee John Hanna and Frank Quevedo, from Southern California Edison.  Both do so much for the community!  Garden Grove Council Candidates Robin Marcario, Paul Lucas and Tram Linh Ho were there too.  They sat at different tables.

I also finally met Debra Carillo, who is running against Republican Westminster Councilman Kermit Marsh for a judicial seat on the O.C. Superior Court.  She is very warm and friendly.  I can see why Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido endorsed her – but he also endorsed Marsh, which is just weird.

Carillo cracked up at the ad I placed in the dinner program.  The ad’s banner read “I supported Prop. 22, I’m Sorry!”  Obviously I had some fun with the ad – and ECCO Political Director Jeff Le Tourneau, who did an awesome job as an M.C., introduced me to the audience as someone who came back from the dark side.  That’s about right!

It was also great catching up with Alicia Berhow, who looked amazing, and Bill Spaulding, our friend from the Liberal OC.  I think Chris Prevatt was there too but I didn’t see him.  I know I am going to forget to mention many folks here.  Sorry!  Needless to say the event was very well attended and I had a great time meeting everyone.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fantastic Men Alive, Orange County Men’s Gay Chorus.  They were simply awesome.  I would love to see a longer program featuring these very talented performers.

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"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.