Opening Session with Dustin Lance Black and Blaire Ostler, 2020 Affirmation International Conference
Opening session featuring filmmaker, writer, and social activist Dustin Lance Black and philosopher, author, artist, and poet Blaire Ostler from the 2020 Affirmation International Conference, a conference hosted annually by Affirmation: LGBTQ Mormons, Families & Friends for the entire LGBTQIA+ Latter-day Saint community. This year’s conference was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dustin Lance Black is an Academy Award® winning filmmaker, writer, and social activist. He won the Oscar and two WGA Awards for his screenplay MILK, the biopic of activist Harvey Milk starring Sean Penn, and in 2018 received the Valentine Davies Award from the Writers Guild of America for his body of work. Black was also a founding board member of the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER), which successfully led the federal cases for marriage equality in California and Virginia, putting an end to California’s discriminatory Proposition 8.
Black’s best-selling, award-winning memoir MAMA’S BOY was released in 2019 by Knopf in the United States and in the UK by John Murray. Black is currently adapting Jon Krakauer’s acclaimed book UNDER THE BANNER OF HEAVEN as a limited series for FX and Imagine Entertainment, and is developing MR. RUSTIN, a biopic about the esteemed civil rights organizer Bayard Rustin for Netflix and Higher Ground Productions.
Blaire Ostler is a philosopher who is specialized in queer studies, and is a leading voice at the intersection of queer, Mormon, and transhumanist thought. She is an author publishing her first book, “Queer Mormon Theology: An Introduction.” She is a board member of the Mormon Transhumanist Association, the Christian Transhumanist Association, and Sunstone.
Blaire is also an artist and poet, and spends her spare time hiking, painting, writing, and bickering with her friends about almost any topic imaginable. Blaire and husband Drew reside in Utah with their three children.
The recording of this session and the entire 2020 Affirmation International Conference was made possible by those who financially supported the conference through registration fees. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Affirmation relies on the support of donors to create communities of safety, love, and hope for the LGBTQIA+ Latter-day Saint Community. To support the critical work of Affirmation, please consider donating at https://affirmation.org/donate.