ADL Austin Announces Golden Door Gala Honorees
By Yael Brown
Anti-Defamation League Austin announced it will hold the Golden Door Gala, a replacement for the traditionally held Torch of Liberty event, Dec. 2. The Gala will embody all the attributes held dearly by the ADL as well as new, exciting features for the community to show ADL’s continued local efforts to fight hate.
The Gala will be hosted at the Four Seasons and will honor Mayor Steve Adler and Diane T. Land with the Ray and Audrey Maislin Humanitarian Award and Colette Burnette Pierce with the Community Hero Award. Keynote speaker is Khizr Khan, a Gold Star Father and experienced lawyer.
Adler and Land were founding members of ADL Austin and Adler served on the governing body of ADL as a national commissioner. They both have worked tirelessly over the last 20 years to make Austin a more inclusive place for everyone. Together, they have served on and chaired many of Austin’s large civic and nonprofit boards, including the Texas Tribune, GEN-Austin, Breakthrough, The Contemporary and Ballet Austin. Adler and Land have gone above and beyond public service to pursue projects aimed at improving life for Austin’s diverse community, fighting for equity, access, fairness and opportunity for all.
Pierce Burnette is an extensively awarded and experienced leader in higher education with a deep commitment to student success and civic and community engagement. She also serves as co-chair of Adler’s Task Force on Institutional Racism and Systemic Inequities, working toward expanding opportunities for people of color in Austin. Locally, she is a member of many organizations including Austin Area Research Organization and the steering committee for My Brother’s Keeper.
Khizr Khan is a Gold Star Father who upholds the American values of equity and justice for all. He is also a lawyer, with degrees from Punjab University and Harvard Law School. In addition to his work with complex civil litigation and Health Privacy law, Khan also founded a pro bono project to provide legal services for the families of men and women serving in the military.
The Anti-Defamation League has worked for more than 100 years to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and secure justice and fair treatment for all. The ADL Austin Golden Door Gala will exemplify this concept -- that when one group is marginalized, the rest of us are not truly free.
Named for the last line in Emma Lazarus’ poem, The New Colossus, the Gala’s message will emphasize our country’s strengths and triumphs through diversity and inclusion. The Gala will be followed by the Gilded Social, a True Colors event for Austin’s young adult community. The Social will feature live music and interactive experiences for all guests.