Recent Comments

    In Memoriam

    Grace Flannery (1951–2020)

    Grace Flannery passed away October 3, 2020, in Novato with her wife Glenda Humiston by her side. A longtime social activist and leadership coach, Grace was loved and admired by friends, family, and colleagues throughout the world. Her highly successful practice was built entirely on word-of-mouth as clients would share appreciation for the great skill and empathy Grace utilized to help them develop unlikely allies, successfully navigate serious challenges, and create equitable, impactful organizations.

    She began her career in the physical sciences but her passion for fairness led her to shift her focus to the social justice arena, including civil rights, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace, and more. Grace founded her company Leading Spirit in 2001 to bring services to leaders in nonprofit and public benefit organizations. More recently, she also co-founded Quantum Culture, whose model of Power and Privilege represents a bold new approach to diversity, inclusion, and belonging.

    One of Grace’s greatest joys was to be reunited in 1999 with the daughter whom she had given up for adoption and to see her incorporated into the family. They formed a close and loving relationship that grew to include a grandson in 2009.

    In addition to her work as a Professional Certified Coach, Grace volunteered for many organizations. Of those she particularly found deep meaning and personal fulfillment working with birth mothers through the On Your Feet Foundation, which she recently helped to transform into MPower Alliance. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to: www.mpoweralliance.org/inhonorofgrace

    Other options Grace supported include her work with the LGBTQ+ community through www.horizonsfoundation.org/make-gift-horizons-foundation/ or to Planned Parenthood: www.weareplannedparenthood.org/a/remembering-grace-flannery

    Nikos Antony Diaman (1936–2020)

    Blogger, artist, and LGBTQ activist Nikos Antony Diaman died in Greece of complications from cancer on November 8, 2020, just a week after his 84th birthday on November 1. His cousin Nick Mamatas wrote via social media: “He was a family genealogist and very interested in Ikaria family history; he cleverly located me soon after I moved back to the Bay Area about ten years ago. He was a very friendly man and had the Greek habit of stopping by the office when I was at North Point just to say hi and hang out and grab a little lunch.”

    Mamatas added, “He was also gay, a member of the GLF (Gay Liberation Front), and self-published several books back when it was hard to do so, and also all but necessary for queer writers to do so—his work primarily sold via the couple dozen gay bookstores that used to exist, and through mail order. He kept at it in recent years, and also traveled frequently to Greece, was working on a documentary about Stonewall, and was generally keeping busy and enjoying life. May his memory be eternal.”

    In addition to being an early member of GLF, longtime Bay Area resident Nikos was also a member of the Billy Club, the Gay and Lesbian Artists Alliance, the Radical Faeries, and other LGBTQ groups.

    Read from Nikos’ books at: https://tinyurl.com/y38fwqy3

    Bambi Lake (1950–2020)

    Performer and Cockettes’ star Bambi Lake died of cancer on November 4, 2020. As John Purcell, and later Johnny Dancer, Lake studied theater at Canada Junior College and performed in Bay Area theatrical productions as well as prominent New York shows, including the original Broadway production of Oliver.

    Hitchhiking to San Francisco, Lake met pianist Peter Mintun, who brought Lake into The Cockettes, an avant garde theater group founded in 1969 by Hibiscus (George Edgerly Harris III). It was there that Lake, mentored by Hibiscus, developed her identity and found kindred spirits, including soon to be international music sensation Sylvester.

    Well-established in the Bay Area, Bambi also lived for a year in London, where she performed in the show The Enchanted Miracle and sang with the band V2. They toured Europe with The Stranglers, and additionally opened for acts in San Francisco. According to Robert Cochrane of CultureCatch, “She even spent a year in Berlin with Iggy Pop and David Bowie.”

    In 1996 she penned her autobiography The Unsinkable Bambi Lake. Nine years later, she released a solo album, My Glamorous Life as a Broadway Hostess, which contains a song that she has become well-known for: “The Golden Age of Hustlers.” Its lyrics touch on her own colorful, yet troubled, life:

    I saw the best bodies of my generation
    Sold, bartered, and destroyed
    By drugs and prostitution.
    Pretty queens on the corners and midnight cowboys in the doorways
    If you want it, Daddy, get it here.
    It’s a candy store
    In more ways than one.
    Golden girls and boys all must 
    Like chimney sweepers come to dust.
    It’s hard to find someone you can trust
    Amidst the rhinestones and the rust.

    Bambi was featured in the 2015 award-winning documentary Sticks and Stones. Her final performance was at Cockettes Are Golden – A 50th Anniversary Celebration at the Victoria Theatre in San Francisco on January 4 of this year and attended by Sister Dana Van Iquity of the San Francisco Bay Times, who gave it a rave review in the January 16th issue.

    Bambi is featured in numerous videos at YouTube, including a collection of glamorous photos of her taken by Ric Warren: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wYJG9g3Y5A

    Published on November 19, 2020