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Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala

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More than 400 guests joined Olympians and stars of stage and screen to show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) students at the annual Point Honors gala the landmark New York Public Library last night. The evening celebrated the accomplishments of Point Foundation's (Point), higher education scholarship recipients. More than $500,000 was raised for Point, the nation's largest scholarship-granting organization for LGBTQ students of merit.

Pete Nowalk, the Creator and Executive Producer of ABC's "How to Get Away with Murder," received the Point Leadership Award. Point presents the Leadership Award to an individual who has achieved prominence in their professional career and unequivocally supports the LGBTQ community. Jack Falahee and Conrad Ricamora, both of whom appear on "...Murder," presented Nowalk with the award. In his acceptance speech, Nowalk spoke about how audiences have responded enthusiastically to the LGBTQ characters on the show.

"The relationship between Connor and Oliver is one of the show's most popular, and it has even encouraged me to write more LGBTQ characters into the show - including Viola's character who is now one of the only LGBTQ leads on TV," Nowalk said. "The only reason I had the guts to write any of this is because I had parents who made sure I could go to college. But most LGBTQ kids aren't as lucky as I was. Most can't even afford to hope for a college education. Thanks to Point Foundation, now a few more can and they are going to do big, world-changing things with their futures."

A moving highlight of the evening came when five-time Olympic medalist Greg Louganis received the Point Legend Award, which recognizes an individual who has achieved greatness in their professional career and unapologetically supported the LGBTQ community. Louganis, whose photo will next month join the all-time great athletes appearing on boxes of Wheaties cereal, was presented with the award by fellow Olympian, Gus Kenworthy.

Directing part of his remarks to the Point Scholarship recipients in the audience, Louganis advised them, "Get in the pool - the pool of life; the pool of love; the pool of service. You will find others there, and together those ripples can become waves - waves of higher achievement, of self-acceptance and, just as important, the acceptance of others from all walks of life."

The festive evening featured performances by Billy Gilman, Lena Hall, and Maddie Shea Baldwin from the cast of Broadway's "Bright Star." Other celebrity participants included Laith Ashley, Erich Bergen, Michelle Collins, Mallory Hagan, Julie Klausner, Selenis Leyva,Miguel Marquez, and Sarah Stiles.

Jorge Valencia, the Foundation's Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, shared the news with the audience about Point's new Community College Program. Students intending to transfer to a four-year college can apply for a tuition scholarship, along with professional coaching and invitations to attend some of Point's leadership development conferences. The first year of this new program is generously sponsored by Wells Fargo.

"Thanks to the enthusiastic support of individuals and companies, we are expanding our ability to help LGBTQ students, "Valencia said. "Along with Point's existing scholarships and leadership development programs, we are also excited to empower promising LGBTQ students in community college."

Point will announce the recipients of all of its 2016-2017 scholarships in June 2016.

Photo Credit: Linda Lenzi

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Peter Nowalk

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jorge Valencia

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jorge Valencia

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jorge Valencia and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jorge Valencia and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Pete Nowalk and Jorge Valencia

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis and Johnny Chaillot

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis and Johnny Chaillot

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Erich Bergen

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Lena Hall

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Lena Hall

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Laith Ashley

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dominique

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dominique and Laith Ashley

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dennis Williams and Jorge Valencia

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jorge Valencia and Valerie Smaldone

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dennis Williams and Pete Nowalk

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Johnny Chaillot, Mallory Hagan and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dennis Williams, Pete Nowalk, Mallory Hagan and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Pete Nowalk and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Pete Nowalk, Jorge Valencia and Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Dennis Williams, Greg Louganis and Jorge Valencia

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Miguel Marquez

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Miguel Marquez and guest

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Maddie Shea Baldwin

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Maddie Shea Baldwin

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Maddie Shea Baldwin

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Robert Grunnah and Cameron McFadden

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Eric Rutherford

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Julie Klausner

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Julie Klausner

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Sarah Stiles

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Sarah Stiles

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Conrad Ricamora

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Jake Falahee

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Conrad Ricamora and Jack Falahee

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Ian Whitt and William Kapfer

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Billy Gilman

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Brandon Liberati and Craig Ramsay

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Michelle Collins

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Selenis Leyva

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Joe Lazo

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Ritchie Torres, Mitch Draizin and Corey Johnson

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Corey Johnson

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Elyse Buxbaum and Scott Stringer

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Pete Nowalk, Greg Louganis and Point Scholars

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Point Alumni and Scholars

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Pete Nowalk and family

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis and Robby Browne

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Glenn Connolly, Greg Louganis and Robby Browne

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Erich Bergen and Lena Hall

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Erich Bergen and Lena Hall

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Erich Bergen and Lena Hall

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Greg Louganis and Maddie Shea Baldwin

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Eddie Rabon, Greg Louganis, Lena Hall and Erich Bergen

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Eddie Rabon, Greg Louganis, Lena Hall and Erich Bergen

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Mallory Hagan, Greg Louganis, Craig Ramsay and Brandon Liberati

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Craig Ramsay, Greg Louganis and Brandon Liberati

Photo Coverage: Point Foundation Honors Greg Louganis & Pete Nowalk at Spring Gala
Perfect Ending to a Perfect Night "Table 8" Michael Gaisa, Jon Munoz, Omar Shariff Jr, Bill Kapfer, Todd Sears, Adam Wexelbaum, Michael Honig, Jonathan Lovitz and Ian Whitt


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