Wednesday, March 02, 2011

The Lyon-Martin Academy Awards Benefit Party: Glamor and Caring at Trigger

Phyllis Lyon, Rebecca Prozan, Dr. Betty L. Sullivan, and Scott Wiener

Some of the glamor on the Academy Awards’ red carpet was matched, but with a uniquely San Francisco edge and lesbian-chic flavoring at the Lyon-Martin Clinic Academy Awards benefit at the Trigger Lounge in the Castro on Feb. 27. The event drew a large, diverse group of lesbians and their friends to a sumptuous setting to insure the future of the treasured community clinic, which is a source of low cost and free health care for women and transgender clients.

Lyon-Martin board chair Lauren Winter favored a Lara Croft: Tomb Raider ensemble and the clinic’s interim executive director Dawn Harbatkin matched her with a slinky Gilda-inspired gown and long gloves.

Dr. Betty L. Sullivan of Betty’s List and Greg Bronstein of Flavors You Crave presented the second annual awards that coincide with the overwrought Hollywood event. Bronstein owns Trigger and the nearby Lime Lounge and is known throughout the Bay Area for his attractive, friendly employees, and especially his smiling, attentive bartenders.

Betty’s List is a leading information source and promotional aid for thousands of subscribers and businesses. Sullivan and her crew are not only bringing together a broad range of supporters to save Lyon-Martin Health Services, but they also joined with Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin, Jody Cole, Chris Carnes, and others to make the San Francisco LGBT Community Center possible. They made it clear that women would be a large part of that long-overdue building’s operation.

Trigger's giant projection screen loomed over the guests who enjoyed champagne and stiff drinks. Large quantities of luscious mini-sliders and succulent deviled eggs were served by eye-catching Taylor Perry. She worked smoothly with bartenders Chris Nguyen and Jason Oscara, while sexy dancers Manuel and Crystal were poised to celebrate the gathering of caring donors to a good cause.

Sexy dancers Manuel and Crystal

A guest of honor was lesbian pioneer Phyllis Lyon, and her friend Pan Haskins was thanked for making Lyon’s appearances possible. Assistant District Attorney Rebecca Prozan, activist-philanthropist Jody Cole, San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener, former Supervisor Bevan Dufty, and Sullivan's partner Jennifer Viegas mingled and enjoyed the hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. Donna Sachet showed up to host in a white gown seemingly writhing with red flames. Transgender activist Jamison Green performed spoken word with his wife Dawn looking on. And comic Marga Gomez was over the top and had everyone laughing until it hurt.

Betty (center) and her party guests

Olivia Cruises provided the starring raffle prize of a $1,500 voyage. Commander Zoe Dunning energized the room and had people laughing uproariously as she raised $550 for two vials of sperm from Pacific Reproductive Services. Olivia also featured popular DJ Rockaway whose sounds enhanced the party.

Dr. Sullivan summed up the evening with a message to her family of friends and supporters: “More than $7,500 total in in-kind and cash donations were raised for the Lyon-Martin Clinic. It was a fine evening for all involved and letters and notes of appreciation and praise are continuing to flow in from supporters of our community’s storied clinic providing services for the uninsured and under-insured patients.”

More photos can be seen at