CLEVELAND — The Leather Hall of Fame honors and preserves the legacy of the extraordinary people and organizations that have significantly shaped the history of the Leather/BDSM communities worldwide since 1950. Each year, we induct three groups or individuals to honor their legacy.
We are pleased to announce that the 2018 inductees are International Mr. Leather (IML), Black Leather in Color, and The Society of Janus (SoJ).
International Mr. Leather (IML)
IML “created” the national leather community. Started in 1979 by Leather Hall of Fame inductees Dom Orejudos (inducted 2013) and Chuck Renslow (inducted 2008), IML quickly became the first leather event to draw thousands of gay leather men from throughout North America and parts of Europe. Held annually over Memorial Day weekend, entire hotels in downtown Chicago transformed into leather alternate realities. The IML contest quickly became a big show on a big stage. It inspired leather titleholders who were often sexy, charismatic, community leaders. Many great leather contests and events have been created since IML began, all of them in some measure inspired by IML and often founded and championed by IML participants and volunteers.
Black Leather in Color
With the tag line “Leather on the Cutting Edge for People of Color and Their Friends,” Black Leather in Color “BLIC” was a remarkable and pioneering publication in BDSM history. Published intermittently from 1994 – 2000 by a collective based in New York City, BLIC was a potent intervention to extend the presence of and give recognition to people of color within leather communities; to oppose racism within leather populations; and to oppose anti-SM assumptions within communities of color. BLIC published a huge range of articles, including features on prominent leatherfolk of color, warnings about the rising tide of right-wing anti-gay and anti-SM activities, reports on the notorious Spanner case, as well as BDSM education, art, photography and fiction.
The Society of Janus (S0J)
The Society of Janus is a California-based BDSM education and support group, and the second oldest BDSM organization in the United States. It was founded in 1974 by the late Cynthia Slater (LHOF inductee 2014) and Larry Olsen. SoJ is nonprofit, volunteer-run and describes itself as “devoted to the art of hot, safe, consensual and non-exploitative BDSM.” The Society publishes Growing Pains, an influential newsletter and community calendar. As an organization, SoJ has an historic commitment to include male and female membership.
We are grateful for their contributions and look forward to learning more about them and to honoring them at our annual award ceremony.
The Leather Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Brunch will be held during CLAW 18, April 29, 2018 in Cleveland. This marks the tenth year of the LHoF—rounding out a total of 30 inductees. 2018 is also the year of organizations being recognized (only 3 of the first 27 inductees were organizations). To learn about the Leather Hall of Fame’s previous inductees, or to make a future nomination, please visit https://www.leatherhalloffame.com/.
via press release