MIAMI BEACH, FL – June 25, 2012 – After a nationwide search, long-time community advocate Ivan Cano has been named the first full-time executive director for the Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade & Festival, announced Babak Movahedi, president of the Pride Board of Directors. In his new position, Cano will work with the Pride Board to plan, supervise and execute all elements of next year’s Miami Beach Gay Pride event as well as related activities leading up to Pride. Going into its fifth year, Miami Beach Gay Pride will take place Sunday, April 14, 2013, along Miami Beach’s famed Ocean Drive.
Cano joins the non-profit Pride organization having recently been logistics manager for last year’s Pride and Producers Circle manager for the Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival. Prior to that, he was general manager at Palace on Ocean Drive where he helped initiate the “Dollar Donation Program,” created several street events, and procured an 80-foot by 20-foot rainbow flag which Palace then donated to the Pride parade. Locally, he’s been involved with Pride for the past four years, is chair of the Miami Beach LGBT Business Enhancement Committee and volunteered as nightlife events committee chair for Winter Party Festival. As an advocate for the Hispanic community, he helped create Celebrate Orgullo during Hispanic Heritage Month last year.
Before coming to Miami Beach, Cano was food and beverage manager and an instructor at the California Culinary Academy and also volunteered for the Gavin Newsom mayoral campaign. He also worked for the Gay Games IV in New York, the Boston to New York AIDS Ride, and AIDS Walks in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Atlanta.
“In just four years, Pride has grown exponentially. The board thought that it was important to hire a full-time executive director to take the event to the next level,” Movahedi said. “After interviewing candidates from around the country, the board realized the best person for the job was already here. Ivan has the unique combination of being well acquainted with the city, well known in the community and of having the national event experience that we wanted.”
After a highly successful event in 2012 that attracted more than 60,000 people, Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade and Festival has become the largest, single-day event of the year in Miami Beach. Last year’s Pride Parade and Festival was an extraordinary all-day event that featured a parade with Chaz Bono as Grand Marshal, 67 parade entries and 1,000 participants, followed by an enormous festival with exciting celebrities and musical performances, 150 LGBT-friendly vendors and businesses, refreshments and a family-friendly play area.
Cano was hired by the board of directors responsible for the overall direction and success of these remarkable events. The 2013 Pride board consists of Babak Movahedi, president; Joel Stedman, vice president; Daniel Spring, treasurer; Jerry Torres, secretary; Chip Arndt, Steve Adkins, Edison Farrow, Robin Schwartz, C.J. Ortuno, George Neary and Paolo Ambu. As a dedicated volunteer team, they all work together year-round to ensure the success of the Miami Beach Gay Pride.
The mission of Miami Beach Gay Pride is to bring together members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, their friends, allies, and supporters in celebration of the unique spirit and culture of the LGBT community by producing free, safe, quality mass-appeal events that are open to all, including the Parade, Festival and allied Miami Beach Pride sanctioned events. www.miamibeachgaypride.com.
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Written by Murry Agency
Photo credit: Juan Saco Mironoff, MiamiGayBlog.com