Set to take place at the beautiful Beverly Hills residence of Dr. and Mrs. Jamshid Maddahi (the former of which is a well-respected cardiologist and professor of cardiology at UCLA), this year’s JQ Awards Garden Brunch will transpire on April 15 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Honoring those who have shown excellence in the LGBTQ+ and Jewish ally community, this year’s awards will go to Lynn Bider for the Community Leadership Award, Maria Shtabskaya for the Inspiration Award and Jacob Hofheimer for the Trailblazer Award.
Always active in the Los Angeles and Jewish community, Bider has served as the Sylvia Weisz Women’s Campaign Chair at the Jewish Federation of L.A., as well as the former president of the Stephen S. Wise Temple. Her constant commitment to the needs of and compassion toward others makes her a natural fit for the Community Leadership Award at a time when being a worthy and capable leader means more than ever.
No stranger to being an inspiration, Shtabskaya only just last year received the Women in Leadership Award in West Hollywood, where her service to both the Russian and LGBTQ+ communities have proven indispensable. As the former Vice President of the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce from 2012 to 2014, Shtabskaya has long been a motivational ally, her work also expanding into guest speaking on behalf of the various organizations she is a part of.
Hofheimer, a transgender teen, has been making a name on the boys’ baseball team since transferring to New Roads after to coming out to his parents at the end of eighth grade. Originally enrolled in an all-girls school at the beginning of freshman year, it quickly became evident that this school wasn’t the right fit, not exactly open to embracing someone so “different.” Mind you, this was still 2013, and believe it or not, many strides have been made since that time, especially with regard to trans visibility in pop culture. Since Hofheimer’s switch, he has been a true trailblazer in the world of high school-level sports and acceptance.
All in all, the JQ Awards are sure to offer a very special moment of acknowledgment to those who have helped and furthered the comfort and acceptance of those too often marginalized.