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    Honoring LaTonya Lawson: LGBTQ Ally and Advocate

    Celebrity Solstice executives welcomed guests aboard the ship at Soirée on the Bay I (2018).

    Celebrity’s LaTonya Lawson (right) with Beth Schnitzer and Lenny Broberg at the Richmond/Ermet Aid Foundation One Night Only Benefit Cabaret (2018)

    LaTonya Lawson of Celebrity Cruises is a remarkable ally and advocate for the LGBTQ community in the San Francisco Bay Area region as well as nationally and internationally.

    Her local advocacy work includes supporting numerous nonprofits, such as the Richmond Ermet Aid Foundation (REAF), the Academy of Friends, the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, and others.

    Nationally, she ensures that Celebrity Cruises keeps the LGBTQ community and its concerns at the forefront of Celebrity’s efforts to promote diversity both within the company and for the benefit of guests. Lawson is the proud mother of a gay son, who recently graduated from college. Her love and admiration of him is palpable and carries over to her genuine concern and care for others who are LGBTQ.

    Internationally, she helped to make possible the first ever same-sex marriage at sea. This historic event took place in January 2018 aboard the Celebrity Equinox, where Francisco

    Celebrity’s LaTonya Lawson and Spritz PR’s Beth Schnitzer in the SF Pride Parade (2017)

    Vargas and Benjamin Gray exchanged vows. She also helped to make possible the largest Pride celebration at sea. Celebrity’s Pride at Sea event now happens each June.

    Thanks in large part to her tireless efforts, Celebrity was named the LGBTQ+ Friendly Travel Company of the year in 2016 and this year received the coveted CRUIZIE Award for Best Large Ship Cruise Line for LGBTQ+ Passengers.

    Lawson helped to make possible the Soirée on the Bay, an annual local event that was launched last year. For the 2019 Soirée, Project Open Hand, AGUILAS, and the LGBT Asylum Project will be honored. With beauty and grace, she has honored and benefited countless others over the years.