Recognizing Outstanding Contributions to the LGBTQ+ Community in Puerto Rico
Proceeds from the IGLTA Pride Party to Benefit Award Recipients
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (8 September 2023)—The International LGBTQ+ Travel Association is proud to announce two recipients for the 2023 Pathfinder Award: the True Self Foundation and Waves Ahead Corp Puerto Rico. These two organizations have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to improving the lives of LGBTQ+ individuals in Puerto Rico.
The Pathfinder Award, selected by the IGLTA Board of Directors, is presented to individuals or organizations that have made a significant positive impact in their destination while demonstrating exceptional warmth and hospitality to the LGBTQ+ community. These awardees will be recognized as part of this year’s IGLTA Honors with support from American Express Travel, on 6 October during IGLTA’s 40th Anniversary Global Convention in San Juan. Click here for a list of former Pathfinder Award recipients and other Honors Awards recipients.
“The True Self Foundation and Waves Ahead exemplify the values of inclusivity, empowerment, and community support that IGLTA stands for," said IGLTA President/CEO John Tanzella (he/him). "These awards highlight the outstanding efforts of both organizations in promoting LGBTQ+ inclusivity and supporting the community in Puerto Rico."
“We are honored to receive this award, as it highlights our work and our community in Puerto Rico. Being an LGBTQ+ organization in the Caribbean is not easy, but with partners like IGLTA, our voices can be maximized, and our needs can be heard. Our communities deserve the chance not only to survive, but to thrive,” said Dr. Miguel Vázquez Rivera (he/him), Interim Executive Director at the True Self Foundation.
The True Self Foundation offers financial assistance and legal support to gender-diverse individuals in Puerto Rico, with a special emphasis on the trans, queer, and non-binary communities. Through its core programs, the True Self Foundation provides opportunities for growth and empowerment, helping individuals access necessary resources.
“We are honored to receive the Pathfinder Award. As the only direct services provider focused on the LGBTQ+ and older adult communities, we value this award as it recognizes our work with these marginalized and often forgotten communities. Los Centros de Todes (of everyone) celebrates our intersectionalities while providing life-saving services. Gracias!” said Wilfred W. Labiosa (he/him), PhD, CEO of Waves Ahead Corp Puerto Rico.
Waves Ahead Corp Puerto Rico provides essential advocacy, psychosocial, and ancillary services for LGBTQ+ older adults across the island from Los Centros de Todes. With these service centers strategically located throughout Puerto Rico, Waves Ahead offers inclusive and supportive spaces that empower and uplift the older LGBTQ+ and general LGBTQ+ population’s voices.
Additionally, proceeds from the IGLTA Pride Party on 7 October at The Tryst Beachfront Hotel will raise funds for the two organizations. For more information about this year’s convention in San Juan, please visit igltaconvention.org.
About IGLTA & the IGLTA Foundation
The International LGBTQ+ Travel Association is the global leader in advancing LGBTQ+ travel and a proud Affiliate Member of the United Nations World Tourism Organization. IGLTA’s mission is to provide information and resources for LGBTQ+ travelers and expand LGBTQ+ tourism globally by demonstrating its significant social and economic impact. IGLTA's global network includes 13,000+ LGBTQ+ welcoming accommodations, destinations, service providers, travel agents, tour operators, events, and travel media in 80 countries. The philanthropic IGLTA Foundation empowers LGBTQ+ welcoming travel businesses globally through leadership, research, and education. For more information: iglta.org, igltaconvention.org or iglta.org/foundation and follow us on Facebook @IGLTA, @IGLTABusiness or @IGLTAFoundation, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram @iglta.