Richard J Margolis Award
Denver David Robinson is a writer whose work explores how homophobia and poverty affect LGBTQ people worldwide. Robinson’s work stood out for his courageous reporting ― in particular, his memorable profiles of brave LGBTQ activists in Uganda, a country where same-sex relations are criminalized and activists are targeted by authorities. When Robinson’s work for The Advocate in 2013 was plagiarized wholesale and reprinted in a Ugandan tabloid in 2014, placing his subjects at risk and libeling him, he moved to file suit in the East African country for copyright infringement. “I have learned from my Ugandan colleagues that to achieve any lasting change, we must be willing to step forward — often, alone,” Robinson wrote of this decision in a New York Times op-ed piece.
Currently, Robinson is working on an ambitious project focused on the experiences of LGBTQ refugees and asylum seekers living in American, Canadian, and European cities. His principal objective in this work is to understand how being gay, transgender, or gender nonconforming (and, in many cases, a person of color) exacerbates the challenges faced by displaced individuals in the West. “I want to better convey the varied humanity of these individuals. Too often this is obscured by labels like refugee, asylum seeker, and victim,” he says.
Robinson’s feature stories, essays, poems, and photography
have also appeared in The Christian Science Monitor, The Boston
Globe, VICE, and elsewhere. His recognitions include GLAAD’s
Outstanding Digital Journalism-Multimedia Award, The National Lesbian &
Gay Journalist Association’s Excellence in Photojournalism Award, and an
Oregon Literary Fellowship for nonfiction.
"It is a great honor to receive the 2016 Richard J. Margolis Award,
particularly now, when the rights of refugees, immigrants, and LGBTQ individuals
may be challenged in new and familiar ways," Robinson says.