Controversy Arises as Charlotte Pride Includes Child Sex Offender in List of 'LGBTQ' Award Recipients

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Charlotte Pride, an LGBT pride organization in Charlotte, North Carolina, has chosen a convicted child sex offender as the recipient of its ...

Alan Daniels

Alan Daniels

10 August 2023 8:21 am

Controversy Arises as Charlotte Pride Includes Child Sex Offender in List of 'LGBTQ' Award Recipients

Charlotte Pride Honors Convicted Child Sex Offender with Harvey Milk Award

Charlotte Pride, an LGBT pride organization in Charlotte, North Carolina, has chosen a convicted child sex offender as the recipient of its 2023 Harvey Milk Award for exceptional "LGBT+" advocacy. Chad Sevearance-Turner, a former music minister who spent time in prison for sexually abusing a minor boy, will be honored with the award. The organization has praised him as an influential advocate for LGBT+ issues.

Sevearance-Turner, the president and CEO of the Carolinas LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce, has been named a "Champion of Pride" by Charlotte Pride. The organization supports LGBT+ and allied businesses in North and South Carolina. Sevearance-Turner and other honorees will be recognized at the upcoming Charlotte Pride festival in August.

In 1998, a man was accused by three underage boys of sexual abuse. The incidents occurred while he was serving as the music director for New Harvest Church of God in Gaffney, South Carolina. The accusations were brought to light in a 2000 report from Each of the boys' allegations were tried separately in court.

In a recent case, a 14-year-old boy testified that he spent the night with a man named Sevearance-Turner at one of the other victims' houses. The boy claimed that he woke up to Sevearance-Turner touching his genitals inappropriately. Additionally, the boy stated that Sevearance-Turner invited him to spend the night at his own house, where he asked the boy about his feelings regarding oral sex with another man.

In court, a young boy testified that a church minister, Sevearance-Turner, asked him disturbing questions about sexual acts, which upset him due to the minister's position in the church. Another boy, who was 15 at the time, claimed that Sevearance-Turner invited him to his house, showed him a pornographic video, and then allegedly fondled him while they were sleeping in the same bed.

In a disturbing case, two teenage boys have come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against a man named Sevearance-Turner. One of the boys claimed that Sevearance-Turner threatened him, saying he would make him look like a fool and a liar if he ever told anyone, including the pastor. The other boy stated that Sevearance-Turner made similar advances towards him during a three-week stay at his home, where he was repeatedly fondled. These allegations shed light on a potential pattern of abuse by Sevearance-Turner.

In 2000, a man named Sevearance-Turner was convicted of performing a lewd act on a minor under 16 and sentenced to ten years in prison. His defense attorney, Thomas Shealy, claimed that the accusations against Sevearance-Turner were part of a "Salem witch hunt" by the boys involved. However, Sevearance-Turner was released on parole after serving only two years of his sentence.

The article discusses a controversial decision made by Charlotte Pride, an LGBTQ+ organization in North Carolina. They have faced criticism for including a registered sex offender on their list of "highly accomplished leaders in human resources." Despite being listed on the state's sex offender registry, the individual is described by Charlotte Pride as someone who has made significant contributions to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in their career. The decision has sparked debate and raised questions about the organization's vetting process and the balance between an individual's past actions and their current contributions.

Sevearance-Turner, a child sex offender, was initially listed as one of the honorees for this year's Charlotte Pride event. However, his profile has been removed from the website, suggesting that there may be a reconsideration of his award. It is unclear whether Charlotte Pride was aware of his status as a sex offender when they decided to honor him, as they have not responded to requests for comment.

Sevearance-Turner, an advocate for the LGBT community, recently received an award and shared the news on LinkedIn. He expressed gratitude and mentioned his fellow awardees who also contribute to the region. Sevearance-Turner's employer also congratulated him. He has been recognized for his advocacy work before, including being appointed to Charlotte's business advisory committee by the mayor and being named "Person of the Year" by LGBT newspaper QNotes in 2015. He has also been seen alongside North Carolina's Governor Roy Cooper at a gala in 2019.

The Harvey Milk Award is an annual award presented by Charlotte Pride to honor individuals who have shown exceptional leadership and service to the LGBTQ community in Charlotte and beyond. The award is named after Harvey Milk, a prominent gay activist in San Francisco during the 1970s. It recognizes individuals who have championed LGBTQ causes and made a positive impact on the community.

The 2023 Charlotte Pride festival has secured sponsorships from several major companies including Amazon, McDonald's, Bank of America, Bud Light, Lowe's, NASCAR, and Krispy Kreme. These sponsorships indicate the support and involvement of these companies in the LGBTQ+ community. However, there is also mention of a person named Sevearance-Turner, whose child sex offender status has been revealed in the past while holding a position of influence.

In 2016, Sevearance-Turner, the former president of Charlotte's LGBT Chamber of Commerce, resigned from his position after it was revealed that he had a conviction as a child sex offender. Despite this, he claimed that his past did not hinder his success. During his tenure, Sevearance-Turner was actively advocating for transgender men to be allowed to use women's bathrooms in North Carolina.

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