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Salisbury Pride was first organized by a group of friends who wanted a way to celebrate equality and diversity in Salisbury, NC. The first festival was held in 2011 and Salisbury Pride, Inc. was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 2012.

Salisbury Pride is managed by a board of directors but would not operate without the tireless work of countless volunteers and supporters.

2014 HRC trailblazer award.jpg

Salisbury Pride was honored in 2014 to be presented with the Trailblazer Award from the Human Rights Campaign for our work in promoting visibility and increasing public support for and education about the LGBTQ+ community in Rowan County. (Media coverage by the Washington Post and Qnotes)


Each year, the board of Salisbury Pride selects the recipients of two awards, which are presented on the Main Stage during the annual festival.


The Volunteer of the Year award recognizes a person or group who has served Pride in a volunteer role with dedication towards "Equality for All."


The Ralph Ketner Ally Award is given to a person or group for outstanding community leadership and changing hearts and minds in the community. This award is named for the late Ralph Ketner, co-founder and former CEO of Food Lion, who was a strong supporter of equality and diversity in Rowan County.

Recent winners of these awards are:

Volunteer of the Year Award

2019 Maddi McDaniel

2018 Tricia Douglas

2017 Steve and Lina Drinkard

2016 Athena Moore

Prior years:

Lynn Jacek

Rachel Carden & Trisha Merkwa

Julia Thomason

Amy Smith

Bob Lambrecht &  Jon Planovsky

Andy Linker

Ralph Ketner Ally Award

2019 'Tis the Season Spectacular Committee

2018 Maggie Blackwell

2017 Margaret Almeida

2016 Bill Stanback

Prior years:

Sue Day Whitley

Ashley Jo Farmer

Mike Clawson

The Cataldo Family

Ralph Ketner

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