Creating Change


So exactly what is The National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change?
The National LGBTQ Task Force sponsors and organizes The National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change. 2015 marks the 27th gathering of this unique national conference. Creating Change (as it's affectionately known) is the nation's pre-eminent political, leadership and skills-building conference for the LGBT social justice movement. Since 1988, Creating Change has created the opportunity for thousands of committed people to develop and hone their skills, celebrate victories, build community, and to be inspired by visionaries of our LGBT movement and allied movements for justice and equality.

What's the goal of the Conference?
The primary goal of the Creating Change Conference is to build our movement's power from the ground up to secure our overarching goal of full equality, social justice and dignity for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the United States.

At the 27th National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change, we'll celebrate 27 years of building the grassroots power of our people and families. Over 44,000 people have attended Creating Change to learn, grow and expand their skills and confidence to create change in their communities, their states, this country and the world. For each Creating Change attendee, our annual skills-building and training event is a life-changing experience.

Where is this year's Creating Change Conference going to be held? And when?
The 27th National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change will be held at the Sheraton Denver in beautiful downtown Denver Colorado, February 4–8, 2015. At the 2015 Creating Change Conference, we'll reflect on the outcomes of many contemporary issues facing us, including our recent string of marriage equality victories, our full and expansive agenda for equality that is so much more than marriage, our community's resolve and action steps to end the AIDS epidemic, our community organizing efforts to create safer schools, legal recognition for all especially our trans sisters and brothers, and building alliances with pro-LGBT allies and religious organizations. We will create enduring change at the 2015 Creating Change Conference in Denver!

What happens during the Conference?
Over the five days of the Creating Change Conference, our program presents over 18 day-long institutes, two dozen sophisticated trainings in the Academy for Leadership and Action, a special programming segment called Practice Spirit, Do Justice for faith leaders and organizers, approximately 250 workshops and caucus sessions, four keynote plenary sessions, worshipful gatherings, film screenings, meetings, receptions, social events, and a multitude of opportunities for attendees to meet and learn from each other.

Who goes to Creating Change?
You, we hope! Over 3,800 people attended the 2014 Creating Change Conference in Houston from all over the United States, with a few attendees from other countries. Our 2014 Creating Change Conference broke attendance records with 3823 folks in house. Let's beat that in Denver!

Attendees represent all sectors and demographic groups in our movement, including young and old activists, organizers and activists of color, paid and volunteer staff people at LGBT political and community organizations, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer advocates and straight allies, HIV/AIDS activists, elected officials, safer school advocates, anti-violence activists, faith community organizers and leaders of campus communities and local community centers. In short, Creating Change is an annual gathering of organizers and activists working to create a world in which our sexual orientations and gender expressions will be welcomed and celebrated.

Great! When can I register?
Registration for the Creating Change Conference will open on/about August 10, 2014. You can book a hotel room now! Check under "Where To Stay" on the Web site main menu bar.

So, what is the Denver LGBT community doing?
Our LGBT sisters and brothers in Denver are thrilled to host Creating Change 2015, welcoming Creating Change to their great community and city. Denver's Mayor Michael B. Hancock is a strong ally to LGBTQ people. As Mayor of Denver, Hancock has spoken movingly about the loss of his brother to AIDS, supports marriage equality in Colorado, and has advocated on behalf of LGBTQ athletes to compete openly and proudly. Mayor Hancock's administration includes many openly LGBTQ people, including one of the Co-Chairs of the 2015 Denver Host Committee. Mayor Hancock welcomes the 2015 Creating Change Conference to Denver.

Our Denver and Colorado friends have built impressively effective community groups and a vast array of organizations serving LGBT communities and organizing LGBT people. Some organizations and projects that we look forward to working with on Creating Change 2015 include: The GLBT Center of Colorado; OUT Boulder; OutFront; SAGE of the Rockies; Gender Identity Center of Colorado; Urban Peak; OASOS of Boulder County; Rainbow Alley of Denver; Colorado Anti-Violence Project; The Imperial Court of the Rocky Mountain Empire; Babes Around Denver; PFLAG Denver; Bent Lens Cinema; Cinema Q; Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Student Services at Auraria; One Colorado; Colorado AIDS Project; Two Spirit Society of Denver; Metropolitan Community Church of the Rockies; The Gill Foundation; The Denver Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender (GLBT) Commission; CH2M Hill; Visit Denver.

How much does it cost to attend The 26th National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change?
  • When budgeting for the Creating Change Conference, attendees should include the conference registration fee, travel costs, accommodations, and food costs.
  • Registration fees range from $400 to $0, depending on an attendee's age, when one chooses to register, and whether an attendee seeks financial support to attend. Conference registration, with rates and scholarship information, will be posted here on the Creating Change Web site in early August.
  • Travel costs vary greatly depending on how far one must travel to get to Denver and the travel option chosen. Air travel is probably most expensive, followed by Amtrak; auto or bus travel is probably least expensive.
  • The Sheraton Denver offers rooms at a conference rate of $149 for singles, doubles, triples or quads. Sharing a room is a great way to reduce the cost of a hotel stay. Also, the Creating Change Host Committee will set up a community housing network so that attendees can be housed at no charge by community members.
  • We suggest that attendees budget at least $65/day for food while at the conference. This will allow for three nutritious but modestly priced meals a day. There are many lower priced food outlets within walking distance of the Sheraton Denver on the 16th Street Pedestrian Mall.

How has the Task Force interacted with and supported LGBT people in Colorado?
The Task Force has been blessed with strong Board of Director leadership from Denver and Colorado. Board members, past and present, are Sue Anderson, Margaret Burd, Anthony Aragon, and Sydney Andrews.

Highlights of our work in Colorado: In the late 1980s, following the US Supreme Court decision in Bowers v Hardwick that upheld existing anti-sodomy laws, Task Force Privacy Project staff worked with activists in Colorado to organize Colorado's first statewide political group, the Colorado Gay and Lesbian Task Force. The 1992 Creating Change Conference, held in Los Angeles, was the launch site of Boycott Colorado, the grassroots movement to protest passage of Amendment 2 which prohibited LGBT anti-discrimination laws in the state. The Fight the Right Project of the Task Force organized Movement Building trainings in Denver in 1993 to sharpen skills of community organizers. On October 10, 1995, the day of the Supreme Court oral arguments on Amendment 2, Task Force ED Melinda Paras rallied Coloradans in Denver to speak out against Amendment 2. The Task Force, along with Colorado LGBT groups, also organized rallies against Amendment 2 in a dozen cities across the country in a campaign called "Undo 2 Day of Action." During the Task Force's Equality Begins at Home national campaign in March, 1999, Equality Colorado distributed photos of LGBT families to every state legislator; on March 26, 1999, Colorado's House Appropriations Committee approved a civil rights bill protecting LGBT people, the first time such a measure had been passed out of committee. (Non-discrimination laws inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity were enacted in 2007 and 2008.) The National Religious Leadership Roundtable, convened by the Task Force, met in Colorado Springs in August 1999, to organize against and criticize narrow theologies of exclusion, represented by Focus on the Family, based in Colorado Springs. In October 2006, as Coloradans organized to counter Amendment 43, a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, the Task Force ran a pre-election campaign called "Phone Home," asking Coloradans to vote against Amendment 43. Amendment 43 was approved by voters, but ultimately was struck down on June 25, 2014 by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Same sex couples can now legally marry in Colorado. The 2009 Creating Change Conference was held in Denver in January, with over 2000 people gathering at the Grand Hyatt Denver. In 2013, the Task Force issued a Colorado state report of findings from the National Transgender Discrimination Survey showing alarming levels of discrimination faced by transgender and gender non-conforming Coloradans.