2017 Keynote Speakers: Steven Dettelbach and Dr. Ken Chalker

2017 Keynote Speakers: Steven Dettelbach and Dr. Ken Chalker

Every year during the Rally portion of Cleveland Pride immediately following the parade, we welcome performers on our Main Stage for the National Anthem, conduct an Interfaith Welcome, and host several local speakers in order to engage, educate, unite our communities, and show that all are welcome, regardless of their beliefs or theologies. For our 2017 event, we are honored to welcome two keynote speakers: one of which is former U.S. Attorney for Northern Ohio and prosecutor at the Department of Justice, Mr. Steve Dettelbach, who will be followed by Dr. Kenneth W. Chalker, senior pastor of the University Circle United Methodist Church.

During more than two-decades as a prosecutor, Mr. Dettelbach worked side-by-side with law enforcement to keep Ohio safe, to hold the powerful accountable, and to protect the rights of every person. Nationally recognized as a prosecutor who fights for civil rights, Steve has championed equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals through his work as a prosecutor and service in the community. During his tenure as U.S. Attorney, Steve served as Chairman of the committee that advised the United States Attorney General on civil rights issues, and he oversaw an office that took a firm stance against hate crimes. Cleveland Pride is excited to learn more about Mr. Dettelbach’s achievements and future goals for advancing civil rights in Ohio.

Dr. Ken Chalker shared with us, “I support the LGBTQ community because each person is a child of God; loved, complete and spirit-filled. There are too many faith groups; churches particularly, who would not believe that…It is important for me to be a voice of opposition to such biblical, theological nonsense, prejudice and hate.” His leadership at the University Circle United Methodist Church, appropriately called the Church in the Circle, has helped to build a very diverse and inclusive congregation.

Dr. Chalker was twice named one of Cleveland’s most interesting people by Cleveland Magazine, is a former radio and television commentator, and is a recipient of the Cleveland Advertising Club’s “Outstanding Communication Achievement of the Year” Award. Dr. Chalker serves on the boards of many community organizations including the Greater Cleveland Roundtable, is a graduate of Leadership Cleveland, and is deeply committed to programs focusing on the children of Cleveland and homeless individuals.

In regards to Cleveland Pride 2017’s theme, “United We Stand Out”, Dr. Chalker told us, “It is essential to have a dynamic sense of self worth, self worth that enables each of us to stand out against hatred, prejudice and ignorance; self-worth that enables each person to stand OUT AND UP to all the forces in life which seek to push down, repress and sometimes bury, love.”
Join us in welcoming Mr. Steve Dettelbach and Dr. Ken Chalker to the Cleveland Pride Main Stage on June 24th immediately following the 12 PM parade!