Gio Benitez and LZ Granderson co-hosted with special guests including Don Lemon, Tamron Hall and Rosanna Scotto. This year’s benefit featured a live performance by a cast member of the Tony Award-Winning musical, “Fun Home,” based on the best-selling graphic memoir by Alison Bechdel.

New York, NY – The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) held its 21st annual New York Benefit: Headlines & Headliners on Thursday at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, raising tens of thousands of dollars for its many programs. Gio Benitez, ABC News correspondent, and LZ Granderson, ESPN senior writer and ABC News contributor, co-hosted the night’s festivities, where they presented NLGJA’s Leroy F. Aarons Scholarship and Kay Longcope Scholarship.

The night drew a crowd of almost 300 and was closed by a performance of “Ring of Keys” by Alessandra Baldacchino, a cast member of the Tony Award-winning musical “Fun Home.” The musical is based on the best-selling graphic memoir by the 2015 LGBT Journalist Hall of Fame inductee Alison Bechdel.

“It’s incredibly moving to be in a room with so many people who want to make the world a better place not just for the current generation,” said Benitez, “but for our children. Honored to have been a part of such a special night.”

NLGJA, The Association of LGBT Journalists, is an organization of journalists, news executives, media professionals, educators and students working from within the news industry to foster fair and accurate coverage of LGBT issues. NLGJA opposes all forms of workplace bias and provides professional development to its members.

“Journalism organizations like NLGJA are instrumental in not only becoming a better professional but a better person because they remind us of the importance of paying it forward,” said Granderson. “Those of us fortunate enough to have been in the business a while did not manage longevity on our own. We had a lot of advocates along the way, advocates we can never truly pay back. Best we can do is try to be an advocate for someone else and Headlines and Headliners is part of this advocacy work. To paraphrase Marian Edelman, it’s the rent we pay to be here.”

Headlines & Headliners was made possible by a number of partners including Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, Bloomberg and JetBlue. For more info about the event and to see photos from the evening go to www.nlgja.org/2016/.

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About the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association
NLGJA is an organization of journalists, media professionals, educators and students working from within the news industry to foster fair and accurate coverage of LGBT issues. NLGJA opposes all forms of workplace bias and provides professional development to its members. For more information on the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, visit the NLGJA website at http://www.nlgja.org.