Champions Awards

LGBT+Role Model

Award Recipient

Sara R Phillips

Sara R Phillips, the chair of TENI and the facilitator of the Dublin Trans Peer Support Group, was awarded LGBT+ Role Model for her over 20 years of work with the Irish trans community. Upon receiving her award Sara was extremely grateful and expressed her appreciation for everyone involved in organisations that help better the lives of LGBT+ people in Ireland, such as TENI. She explained the importance of her work, saying, “Everything do is for our trans community, everything do is for the people who have gone before me but also those who are coming after me, because currently life as a trans person in Ireland still is not good enough. [There] is still a lot more to do.”


Eddie McGuinness

Eddie McGuinness was nominated for his endless work within the community, having been a constant fixture at every LGBT+ march, event and protest for years. Eddie has played a key role in many of the Pride celebrations and other LGBT+ events across the country.

Adam Shanley

Adam Shanley is the manager of HIV Ireland’s MSM Programme, delivering training to sexual health workers and drug service providers across Ireland and encouraging the creation of a national chemsex working group.

Ailbhe Smyth

Ailbhe Smyth was a spokeswoman and convener for the Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment, a founding member of Marriage Equality, an organiser for Action for Choice and a former Chair of the NXF. Ailbhe previously received the Lifetime Achievement award at the 2015 GALAS.

LGBT+ Ally

Award Recipient

Holly Shortall Holly is an active member of ACT UP and is a vocal advocate for LGBT+ rights. On receiving her award, Holly explained, “If there’s one thing I’ve learned about being an ally it’s that not to take up space on a stage that isn’t yours.” She gave special acknowledgments to those at ACT UP and expressed her gratitude not only for the award itself but also for the opportunity to dedicate her life to a cause she is so passionate about.


Educate Together

Educate Together provide an environment in which the identity of each child is equally respected and celebrated, but they also specifically address LGBT+ issues as part of the curriculum.

Senator Ged Nash

Labour politician, Senator Ged Nash and his party were heavily involved in implementing laws in the Seanad which pardoned historic convictions of LGBT+ people and issued apologies to those wrongly convicted. Ged has been consistent in his allyship, with involvement in the #CallItOut campaign.

Siobhan O’Dea – GMHS

Since Siobhan was appointed as manager in February 2016, the GMHS has made significant changes in their free STI screenings - one of which is the addition of a Monday clinic, meaning the clinic now runs three days a week instead of two.

Outstanding Company

Award Recipient

Arthur Cox Solicitors

Arthur Cox supports its LGBT+ employees in both its practice and in its policies, such as offering shared parenting leave. They provide sponsorship and support, such as funding the Pride Run as well as a number of LGBT+ university societies. At the ceremony, a spokesperson for Arthur Cox Solicitors thanked all the LGBT+ organisations and volunteer groups for their work as the company often utilises their resources to learn about the small things they can do to make positive changes in their workplace to make it as diverse and inclusive as possible.



Accenture are dedicated to raising awareness and educating their employees about the LGBT+ community, while simultaneously supporting their LGBT+ employees worldwide.

Dell Technologies

In testament to the amazing work done by Dell, the company has scored 100% on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index for 14 consecutive years. Dell Technologies are paving the way for LGBT+ equality within the tech sector.

Fostering First Ireland

Fostering First Ireland (FFI) were nominated for both their inclusion of LGBT+ staff as well as their active recruitment and support of LGBT+ foster carers. FFI recently launched their Children’s Participation strategy which included specific recognition of the need to ensure young LGBT+ voices are heard.

LGBT+ Employee Resource Group

Award Recipient

Bank of Ireland Pride Committee

Accepting on behalf of the ERG, employee Kirsty Mulholland explained the importance of the committee for LGBT+ employees within the company, including herself. She joined the committee in 2017 and was the first trans woman to transition while working there. Kirsty recounted the group being given the opportunity to work with multiple LGBT+ organisations such as BeLonG To, TENI and the Rainbow Project over the years, all of which has made Bank of Ireland a place that not only protects its LGBT+ employees, but also celebrates them.


AIB Pride Matters

AIB founded Pride Matters in May 2017 with goals to educate AIB staff surrounding LGBT+ issues, ensuring senior leadership support was visible, empowering the members of the ERG to make positive change and the company and its employees reaching out to the LGBT+ community to assist in any way.

Irish Life Pride Committee

Since forming, the group has been extremely proactive in its educational approach toward LGBT+ issues within the company, often times partnering with LGBT+ NGOs to educate their staff on topics such as inclusion and queer culture.


OUTLaw was formed with the aim of generating discussion and debate through various social and educational events in order to promote the inclusion of LGBT+ people across the Irish legal community.

This article appears in the 363 Issue of GCN

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This article appears in the 363 Issue of GCN