Nominate them!

Are you thinking about making a Leather Hall of Fame nomination? Two things:

1. Don’t assume that someone is so foundational that they must have been nominated already. Maybe they have, maybe they haven’t. Chances are they haven’t! We’re a young organization that seeks to celebrate contribu- tions of a broad and disparate set of communities around the world.  These communities have been largely hidden from the general population and at times also from one another. As a result, there is an enormous variety in the types of contri- butions; these contributions have been incorporated in leather history and they are remembered in ways dramatically uneven. Whoever is foundational to some may be completely unknown to others.

Simply put: you’re better off assuming that your person has not been nominated. And if they have, nominating them a second time will not hurt, quite the opposite: it will likely result in more being known about that particular person or group and is likely to increase their chances.

2. Don’t assume your nominee will never be inducted. There’s a great variety of trajectories and personalities among the people we have inducted, and they relate to the leather community in a wide variety of ways. Never assume that your nominee isn’t famous enough for this Hall of Fame. Granted, some of our inductees are true leather celebrities. More often they are not. For the major- ity of our inductees very little was known by most of us prior to their induction. Some names had been entirely forgotten and there is a handful of inductees for whom our induction booklets offer the most comprehensive, if not the only, information available anywhere.

Inducting the celebrities allows us to renew the expressions of gratitude for well-known contributions. Inducting the forgotten ones has an entirely different purpose: it is about producing new knowledge, getting the record straight and more exhaustive, and it  is about doing justice. Be assured that the selection committee will not ignore your nominee just because they are not famous — the opposite is true. Be certain that if your nominee has made a significant contribution, and if it was made at least 25 years before you nominate them, they will be seriously examined and stand a real chance to be inducted.

What sets them apart is not fame, but the magnitude of their contribution. That’s all your nominee needs!