Honoring With Pride

Greater Palm Springs Pride recognizes recipients of its 2019 Pride Honors Awards for furthering LGBTQ causes in the Coachella Valley.

Staff Report Current Digital, LGBT

Former Palm Springs Mayor Ron Oden will be honored at Greater Palm Springs Pride Honors on Sept. 24.

Greater Palm Springs Pride will honor recipients of its 2019 Pride Honors Awards at a special ceremony Sept. 24 at the Hilton Palm Springs.

The prestigious Pride Honors are presented annually to individuals to recognize their efforts in raising awareness and furthering the causes of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and their allies. Six awards celebrate powerful voices in the community, a former mayor, a teacher, a retired Army Master Sergeant and a 43-year veteran drag performer. The awards program marks the approach of Pride Week,  in the region under the worldwide theme of Millions of Moments of Pride.

Recognized as the Advocate of the Year for working to raise the consciousness of race and racism in our community is author, radio show host and retired attorney Lauren N. Nile.  The Spirit of Pride Award recognizes Ellen Wolf for enhancing the quality of life in the region by raising awareness to advance equality, promote diversity or celebrate the strength and talent of the LGBTQ community. By using her activism and business management skills, Wolf focuses her volunteerism on projects that advance causes close to her heart.

The 2019 Friend of Pride is Jennifer Jungwirth, a devoted mentor, educator, and LGBTQ ally who has dedicated her life to help students succeed in their continued education and careers.  Jungwirth has been a teacher at Yucca Valley High school empowering youth for the past 20 years.  The Spirit of Stonewall Community Service Award recognizes the positive impact Joyce Oldam has had in the community. Oldam is a retired Army master sergeant, whose efforts have brought people together, promoted self-expression, and inclusiveness.

Ron Oden will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for his active role in the community over 30 years.  He made history in 2003 by becoming the first openly gay mayor elected in Palm Springs. His election also carried statewide significance as the first openly Gay African American elected to lead a California city.

From producing, directing, hosting, and performing for more fundraisers than he can count, Tommi Rose is recognized as the Spirit of Stonewall Volunteer of the Year.

“We are thrilled to kick off this Pride season with honorees that educate, advocate, and inspire our diverse community. Together we honor the past and lift up each honoree,” says Ron deHarte, president and CEO of Greater Palm Springs Pride. “As is our tradition, this is not a group that seeks attention or applause. They quietly serve and we are grateful for the profound impact they have had and continue to have in our community.”

Greater Palm Springs Pride 2019 Pride Honors Awards, 6 p.m. Sept. 24 at Hilton Palm Springs, 400 E Tahquitz Canyon Way. For tickets, visit

The rest of the honorees at the 2019 Pride Honors Awards:


Ellen Wolf


Jennifer Jungwirth


Joyce Oldam


Lauren Nile


Tommi Rose

Additional photo credits to: Corlyce Olivieri of  Corlyce Photography and Luis Gavela .