The annual Bayard Rustin/Audre Lorde Breakfast, produced by Southern Unity Movement, a long-standing Atlanta-based Black LGBTQ advocacy organization, returns to the Loudermilk Conference Center in downtown Atlanta on January 16, 2022, beginning at 10am. The event is open to all.
The 2023 theme for the Breakfast: “Like A Phoenix, Rising Into Our Collective Power!” is symbolic of the resilience of Atlanta’s Black LGBTQ community as it rises from the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic to continue the cherished 21-year tradition.
The breakfast is the namesake of trailblazing Black gay civil rights activist Bayard Rustin and Black lesbian “warrior poet” and activist Audre Lorde. It bears witness to Dr. King’s vision of the “beloved community” while acknowledging the contributions and intersecting identities of LGBTQ people in the quest for equality.
With a percussive opening, musical offerings, spoken word, a youth art space, and a drag performance—the artistry, historical resistance, and totality of Black LGBTQ people will be front and center.
Co-founder and organizer Darlene Hudson envisions this year’s Rustin/Lorde Breakfast as a celebration and display of what makes Atlanta’s Black LGBTQ community an integral part of the continuation of the civil and human rights movements in Atlanta and across America.
“Now in our 21st year, the annual Bayard Rustin/Audre Lorde Breakfast is much more than an opportunity for familiar faces to break bread. It is a homecoming,” Hudson said. “It is intentional that the Breakfast happens every MLK holiday. For decades, the contributions of Black LGBTQ people, including Bayard Rustin, organizer of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, were overlooked and excluded from history. Lorde’s academic and political work in the US and abroad to confront homophobia and racism, even in the feminist movement, was groundbreaking but rarely recognized. The Breakfast ensures their legacies, and those who follow that are Black, and LGBTQ will no longer be erased from history.”