Forty-four Vassar alums, students, parents, employees, and friends marched as part of a Vassar contingent at the New York City Pride March on Sunday, June 25, 2023. AC Dumlao ’13, Chief of Staff at Athlete Ally, a nonprofit working to educate and activate athletic communities to eliminate homophobia and transphobia in sports, was among the grand marshals who led the parade, which was broadcast live on ABC-7-NYC. Fellow grand marshals included Billy Porter, Yasmin Benoit, Hope Giselle, and Randolfe “Randy” Wicker.
Dumlao serves on the Board of Vassar’s Alumnae/i Association and as a co-chair of Vassar’s LGBTQ+ alum group. They were named an NYC/WorldPride Community Hero during the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and an “emerging voice” by NBC Asian America for their inaugural “Redefine A to Z” series. Dumlao was also featured in Mashable’s “30 Days of Pride: The LGBTQ figures making history right now.” They share news and commentary on their Facebook page, Call me They, and have given keynotes at high schools and colleges across the country.
The Vassar contingent, the first group to step off in the parade, was organized by the co-chairs of Vassar’s LGBTQ+ alum group—Dumlao, Lisa Malachowsky ’83, and Eric Wilson ’76—in conjunction with the Vassar Club of New York. Marchers received specially designed Vassar Pride hats to wear at the parade … and beyond.
While National Pride Month is officially observed in June, Vassar’s on-campus Pride celebration was held in April. Then-Vassar LGBTQ Center Director Danushi Fernando said she and her interns had organized the kickoff event and other activities so the campus community could take part in the celebration while school was still in session. For the second year in a row, representatives of nearly two dozen student orgs and College departments took part in the festivities, which featured live music, popcorn and snow cones, craft-making booths, and other displays and activities.