Article by Renee Baker in The Dallas Voice – Tavern Guild Pullout, Pride 2010
Paul Lewis likes to say he is old – one of the last of the “old folks” that started with the Pride Parade when Alan Ross was the prime organizer and for who the Parade is now named. Lewis, along with Kathy Jack of Jack’s Backyard, was one of two key players that inherited the Pride Parade responsibility when Alan Ross died in 1995.
As such, Lewis feels it is “quite an honor” to be selected as one of the Grand Marshals in the Alan Ross 2010 Texas Freedom Parade and “stand out and be proud with 20,000 people like you”.
Lewis says Ross was an “awesome man” who was dedicated to being proud and to mentoring those around him. With a little of that guidance, Lewis eventually became a President of the Tavern Guild which hosts and produces the annual Pride Parade.
Lewis, who recently retired from over 25 years at Caven Enterprises, says it was through his employer that his service involvement with the LGBT community “flowed”.
“Caven gave us the time,” he says, “to be part of the community and to just let it happen.”
Among his past pride moments, Lewis fondly recalls his days as a past Board Member at the Oak Lawn Counseling Center, when it was located on Lemmon Avenue. While there and through the years, Lewis learned it is not just the people on the scenes that make it all happen, but it is the people behind the scenes that are just as important.
Lewis would like to give thanks to his roommates Kenneth Jones and Karen Daly who have lived with him for over two decades for their “support that really helped him”.
Lewis also would like to encourages our youth of tomorrow to “go get it and make us proud.” The beneficiary of this year’s Parade is Youth First Texas of which Lewis finds to be a great choice as “we all say it – the youth are our future”.