A Letter from Michael Doughman, Executive Director, Dallas Tavern Guild:
I get lots of people asking, exactly what does the Dallas Tavern Guild do? There is a lot of misconception about our purpose and function in the LGBT community. First and foremost, we are a group of LGBT bars and nightclubs dedicated to serving our community in a safe and comfortable environment. We make every effort to be in compliance with all city ordinances and rules regarding safety and health issues. We also strive to maintain vigilance against illegal activity or criminal behavior within our businesses.
Our primary service-related function is to raise money for our selected charities and community service agencies each year. Contrary to popular belief, our members do not receive any of the funds we raise throughout the year. All proceeds, after expenses, go to our beneficiary agencies. The only benefit our members gain are from the additional traffic our events bring to the community.
Our official annual events are the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade and Festival in Lee Park, the Voice of Pride vocal competition, the International LGBT Press Trip, the Holiday Gift Project, the maintenance of the Alan Ross AIDS Memorial in Lee Park and we also support the Secret Santa program of the Sam Houston School. There are other occasional events that we support and help promote but all of our official events are based on a fundraising structure.
Our community involvement consists of partnerships with the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Dallas Office of Special Events, Lee Park Conservancy, the North Texas GLBT Chamber of Commerce, the Turtle Creek Association, and the Cedar Springs Merchant’s Association. I also serve on the Diversity Council at the Dallas CVB in an effort to assure that the LGBT community is equally included in our city’s marketing missions and that diversity is present in all their programming.
I hope this will help clarify who we are and what we do. Of course, if you ever have any questions or concerns, you can always reach me through this website or the Dallas Tavern Guild office. We aim to continue to serve and support our community in a spirit of fairness and equality for all persons and will always work toward making a better place for us in this city.