Lavender Graduation is an annual graduation and award ceremony celebrating our graduating LGBTQ and allied students from Columbia College, Columbia Engineering, the School of General Studies and Barnard College, and acknowledges their contributions to the LGBTQ community.
Lavender Graduation Speakers
Sabina Tyler Monica Jones CC’20
Tyron Garner Memorial Law Fellow, Lambda Legal
Tribute to the Lavender Graduation Class of 2020
LGBTQ Legacy Award
Honors graduating students who have left an indelible mark on the LGBTQ community at Columbia University and Barnard College in the form of advocacy, support services, community building and/or positive change.
Sabina Tyler Monica Jones CC'20 (She/Her)
“I thank Proud Colors for being my home on campus, where I always felt comfortable being my truest self. I also thank Multicultural Affair’s Queer and Trans Advisory Board for allowing me to be involved from the beginning in the different paths and manifestations of growth that we have created. I also thank the Columbia College community and the Black Students’ Organization for electing me the first Gender and Sexuality Representative and the first LGBTQ+ Outreach chair, respectively. As a member of the community, I am delighted and proud to be recognized by those who mean the most to me at Columbia’s campus.”
Isaac Alexandre Jean-Francois CC'20 (He/Him)
Isaac has been a Queer and Trans Student Advisory Board Board Member since his sophomore year and is currently the secretary of the Board of Directors of the Stonewall Community Foundation. He has strived to advocate for our LGBTQIA+ community inside and outside of the seminar room as a women’s, gender, and sexuality studies major.
Galen Hawkins CC'20 (Any Pronouns)
Galen thanks the residents of Q House for allowing him to serve them as their RA, and also thanks the members of Proud Colors for facilitating us in discussing our lives with each other every Tuesday. These two events have truly kept me grounded when I felt myself lifting away. I’m very proud to be involved in both of these organizations.
Charlie Blanc GS'20 (They/Them)
Charlie took up the position of president of the GS Alliance as a senior hoping to expand this safe(r) space for LGBTQIA+ students, as well as to bring up more discussions around political activism within it. With similar intentions but a broader audience, they participated in the organization of Queer Awareness Month 2019.
Honors students who have served as mentors and guides for LGBTQ rising leaders and have contributed to a continued culture of LGBTQ mentorship at Columbia University and Barnard College.
Ben Eisenstadt CC'20 (He/Him)
Ben founded the student group Voices in Neuroscience, which seeks to unite students from underrepresented backgrounds with a passion for science related to identity and society. This group provides a community space for members to discuss their personal challenges, to learn from and network with scientific professionals from underrepresented communities in New York City and to refine scientific communication skills within a constructive environment.
Tevis Robinson CC'20 (He/Him)
Tevis grew up in a small town in West Virginia where the norms of the community did not allow him to exhibit his queerness. He was able to let it out at Columbia University and in New York City. There, he wanted to be as flamboyant and outspoken as possible, attending LGBTQ conferences across the country, being a Campus Ambassador for GLAAD and Out for Undergrad, as well as being the International Representative for the LSESU Pride Alliance during his tenure studying abroad at The London School of Economics and Political Science. He believes that there is nothing truly more liberating than being yourself
Rose Gibbs GS’20 (She/Her)
“Having grown up and come out during a time when being gay was much less accepted than it is now, I am keenly aware that a supportive network of people who have walked down a similar path of self-acceptance and dealt with friends and family who judge you for your sexual orientation, I know how important it is to have someone who is willing to ‘be there’ for each other. I try to be that for anyone in the LGBTQIA community both at Columbia and in the world at large.”
Recognizes rising LGBTQ student leaders at Columbia University and Barnard College who have exemplified outstanding leadership over the past year through a dedication to enhancing the LGBTQ community.
Avidan Brown GS’21 (He/Him)
Avidan is a former professional athlete who has had to deal with the ins and outs of navigating his sexuality in a sometimes less-than-welcoming environment. “When I started at Columbia I finally felt that I had the ability and agency to apply all that I learned and desired to learn in an attempt to assist my fellow students. I have been working for the last two years as president and then VP of GS Alliance to foster an atmosphere of inclusivity, diversity and acceptance. Together with my fellow students serving on the board, we worked to bring educational programming, advocacy projects and social inclusion to as much of the student body as we could reach.”
Zamaan Hashmi SEAS’22 (He/Him)
“As a cofounder of QFaith and as a chair for the Columbia Mentoring Initiative, I have sought and continue to seek to support people by building vibrant LGBTQ+ spaces. I try to focus on bringing activism and genuine intersectionality to the institutional core.”
Dean Peter J. Awn Faculty/Staff Award
Recognizes faculty, staff and/or departments who/that have exhibited a commitment to the LGBTQ community in their work at Columbia University and Barnard College.
Daniel Chiarelli (He/Him)
Daniel has been working at the Gay Health Advocacy Project, part of Columbia Health, since 2005. Over the past few years, he has worked closely with queer and trans students as part of the Queer & Trans Resource Team led by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, as well as the Transgender and Gender Expansive Health Team at Columbia Health. “What a pleasure it is to be around such cool coworkers and students! Cheers to the Class of 2020!”
Getting involved with Columbia Pride
Welcome to Columbia Pride, the University-wide alumni association for LGBTQIA+ members of the Columbia community! Stay up to date on upcoming Pride Month events and opportunities to connect:
Pride is excited to welcome the Class of 2020 to the alumni community. Join us for a happy hour celebrating YOU on Wednesday, May 27. Register here.
We also invite you to reach out to us directly at Pride@alumniclubs.columbia.edu. Congratulations!
Lavender Graduation Graduates
|Athena Abadilla BC'20||Daria Forde BC'20||Sophia Lanier BC'20||Tevis Robinson CC'20|
|Ruthy Amkraut CC'20||Katrina Francis SEAS'20||Raphael Lee CC'20||Alexa Roman CC'20|
|Eddie Baker CC'20||Giorgia Fujita SEAS'20||Marina Levy BC'20||Em Rosner BC'20|
|Sarah Barlow-Ochshorn BC'20||Zehui Gao SEAS'20||Lara Lewison CC'20||Aydan Shahd BC'20|
|Sara Bellan BC'20||Rachel Gates BC'20||Mary Liu GS'20||Molly Shapiro BC'20|
|Blakey Bessire BC'20||Nina González Silas BC'20||Inga Manticas CC'20||Timothy Shertzer SEAS'20|
|Charlie Blanc GS'20||Alexander Gonzalez Torres CC'20||Uila Marx BC'20||Maya Sibul BC'20|
|Michelle Capuno GS'20||Nick Gupta GS'20||Janis McAllister BC'20||Eliza Siegel BC'20|
|Jay Castro CC'20||Laura Hand CC'20||Darinelle Merced-Calderon CC'20||Georgia Silva CC'20|
|Michelle Chow BC'20||Luke Haubenstock CC'20||Amanda Merritt BC'20||Mia Simon BC'20|
|Jessica Cruz BC'20||Galen Hawkins CC'20||Kyeongjoo Min CC'20||Alison Simons CC'20|
|Christian Cruz CC'20||Allison Hung CC'20||Mason Murray CC'20||CJ Strauss BC'20|
|Teresa Deely CC'20||Greg Inchaustegui GS'20||Salma Nakhlawi BC'20||Alex Tang CC'20|
|Adri Denbroeder BC'20||Isaac Jean-François CC'20||Richie Ngo SEAS'20||Mira Tignor BC'20|
|Kay Christopher Dente-Ferguson BC'20||Mads Jensen GS'20||Erica Nieves GS'20||Xitlalli Vazquez BC'20|
|Kira DeSimone BC'20||Camille Johnson BC'20||Isabella Oliva BC'20||Harrison Voss SEAS'20|
|Hayes Devaney BC'20||Sabina Jones CC'20||Thomas Phelan CC'20||Sara Walker BC'20|
|Alejandro Diaz Tur GS'20||Batya Kemper BC'20||Xana Pierone BC'20||Rachel Ning Wan SEAS'20|
|Victoria Dreyer CC'20||Julia Khan BC'20||Emily Quinn BC'20||Jules Weingarden BC'20|
|Morgan Edmonds CC'20||Victoria Krovatin BC'20||Jane Reel BC'20||Elektra Williams CC'20|
|David Ehmcke CC'20||Stephen Kuster CC'20||Veornica Roach CC'20||Haoqi Xia CC'20|
|Ben Eisenstadt CC'20||Ana Lam BC'20||Taylor Roberts-Sampson CC'20||Alex Zhang CC'20|