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Unleashed LGBTQ Adds NASCAR Driver, Pulse Nightclub Survivors to Lineup

Unleashed LGBTQ Adds NASCAR Driver, Pulse Nightclub Survivors to Lineup

Unleashed LGBTQ Adds NASCAR Driver, Pulse Nightclub Survivors to Lineup

Zach Herrin, Angelica Jones, and Patience Murray join Billy Eichner, Indya Moore, and others at the first-of-its-kind event.

Unleashed LGBTQ has added two new panels for the first-of-its-kind conference and entertainment festival taking place in Texas this September.

NASCAR stock car driver Zach Herrin will share his experiences as an out gay man racing in the inherently conservative sport. Herrin partnered with Lambda Legal for the 2023 season opener in Daytona, Florida, to bring awareness to the “Don’t Say Gay” and other anti-LGBTQ+ laws in the state.

Unleashed LGBTQ also announced Patience Murray and Angelica Michelle Jones, survivors of the 2016 Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, will join a panel discussion to share their personal accounts of that fateful night that left 49 people dead and more than 50 injured. The pair created the OnePULSE Foundation, a memorial dedicated to honoring the victims and promoting education about gun violence and hate crimes targeting the LGBTQ+ community.

Unleashed LGBTQ Adds NASCAR Driver, Pulse Nightclub Survivors to LineupPatience Murray (left), Angelica Jones (center), Zach Herrin (right)COURTESY UNLEASHED LGBTQ

Unleashed LGBTQ 2023 conference will take place live and in person September 22-24, 2023, at Gilley's in Dallas, Texas ( You can learn more about Unleashed LGBTQ at

“We are proud to provide a platform for people like Zach Herrin to shed light on his extraordinary journey, highlighting both the triumphs and challenges he has faced, as well as Patience Murray and Angelica Jones, whose bravery and stories of survival will undoubtedly inspire all attendees,” Unleashed LGBTQ founder Wesley Smoot said. “Their stories represent the resilience, determination, and transformative power within the LGBTQ+ community. Unleashed LGBTQ is dedicated to providing a platform for diverse voices and experiences, and these new panels exemplify our commitment to fostering understanding and inclusivity.”

Unleashed LGBTQ is the first-of-its-kind conference and entertainment festival where brands, artists, and LGBTQ+ professionals can connect via a range of activities designed to educate, engage, and entertain attendees. The festival will include daily educational sessions covering business, society, and personal development, while brand activations and immersive marketing installations will create an interactive environment. There will also be screenings, drag shows, stand-up comedy, and musical performances, offering a celebration of LGBTQ+ culture and talent.

The trio join a star-studded lineup that already includes actor and writer Billy Eichner, model and advocate Indya Moore, Queer Eye’s food and wine expert Antoni Porowski, multi-hyphenate Dyllón Burnside, and others.

Unleashed LGBTQ Adds NASCAR Driver, Pulse Nightclub Survivors to Lineup From left: Indya Moore, Antoni Porowski, Billy Eichner, Dyllón BurnsideCOURTESY UNLEASHED LGBTQ

Unleashed LGBTQ is also partnering with the Alamo Drafthouse to screen new LGBTQ+ content from streaming services, movie studios, and television networks. Independent filmmakers can submit works for Unleashed LGBTQ 2023 Film Festival at

The growing lineup of talent currently includes:

●Zach Herrin, openly gay stock car driver in NASCAR

●Patience Murray & Angelica Jones, PULSE Nightclub survivors

●Billy Eichner Co-writer and Star of Bros (Universal Pictures), Billy on the Street, The Lion King (Disney), American Horror Story (FX), Difficult People (Hulu)

●Antoni Porowski Emmy-Award Winning Show Queer Eye (Netflix), Host and Executive Producer of Easy-Bake Battle (Netflix), NYT Bestselling Author of Antoni in the Kitchen & Antoni: Let's do Dinner

●Indya Moore, Emmy Award-Winning Show Pose, Yves Saint Laurent Cosmetics, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

●Shangela Emmy Award-Winning Shows We're Here (HBO), RuPaul's Drag Race, & RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars (MTV)

●Dyllón Burnside, Emmy Award-Winning Show Pose, Emmy Award-Winning Show POSE, Emmy-Award winning PBS docuseries PRIDELAND, Golden Globe nominated limited series MONSTER. GLAAD & HRC award recipient

●Daniel Franzese, Mean Girls (Paramount Pictures), Ru Paul's Drag Race (MTV), Looking (HBO)

●Kelly Ann Winget, Founder & CEO of Alternative Wealth Partners, Over $1B in private equity raised, Host of The Wealth Alpha podcast, and Author of Pitch the Bitch (April 2023)

●Brian Sims, Former Penn State Rep., LGBTQ+ Advocate & Speaker, Managing Director of Government Affairs & Policy at Out Leadership, Board Member at Campus Pride & GLSEN

●Naomi Green, MBA Speaker, Marketer, Professor, and Transgender Advocate

●Ashley Brundage, President & CEO of Empowering Differences, Author of Empowering Differences, Transgender Advocate, Former DEI Vice President at PNC Bank, Mother

●Dr. Carlton Thomas, Gastro-Intestinal Medical Doctor, Social Media Sensation, Contributor to Men's Health Magazine, LGBTQ+ Consultant to the White House & the CDC

●Matt Skallerud, Founder & President of Pink Media, Host of #iLoveGayToday, former President of IGLTA, Award-Winning Online Marketer connecting businesses to the LGBTQ+ consumers

●Vicky & Charisse Pasche, Co-Founders of Dapper Boi – body-inclusive and gender-neutral apparel – Marketing, Sales, and Entrepreneurial Experts, Wives and Mothers of Twins

●Stacey Stevenson, CEO of Family Equality, Co-Founder of The Changists (Law Firm Consulting), LGBTQ+ Activist, Speaker, Mother of Two

●Gary Sanchez Sr., Director of Community Impact at Visit Dallas, Former Chairman at North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce, Chairman at Chamber Foundation

●Brad Pritchett, Award-Winning Marketing Executive, Chief Experience Officer at DMA (Dallas Museum of Art), Host of The Good, The Brad, & The Ugly podcast

You can learn more about Unleashed LGBTQ at

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Donald Padgett

Managing Editor at OutTraveler. Also write for Out, The Advocate, and Plus magazines.

Managing Editor at OutTraveler. Also write for Out, The Advocate, and Plus magazines.

Out Traveler Contributor