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Pride Month Interview: Denise Oakes Daugherty

pride month interviewHappy Pride Month! As we embrace the spirit of Pride Month, we’re thrilled to honor and celebrate the diversity that enriches our community. At GTreasury, we believe in fostering an inclusive environment where every individual feels valued, respected, and empowered to bring their authentic selves to work.

To kick off Pride Month, we’re excited to share an interview with one of our exceptional team members. In this enlightening conversation, Denise Oakes Daugherty candidly shares her personal journey, experiences, and insights as a proud member of the LGBTQIA+ community within our organization.

Employee Name: Denise Oakes Daugherty
Location: Wisconsin, United States
Title: Client Support Analyst
Department: Client Support

Q: Can you share with us how you identify within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum and what those identities mean to you personally?

A: I identify as the ‘L’ for Lesbian within the spectrum. For me personally, each identity within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum represents a unique aspect of human experience and diversity. As for lesbian identity, it signifies a romantic and/or sexual attraction between women. It’s about forming deep connections, understanding, and love within the context of a same-gender relationship. Embracing my lesbian identity means embracing who I am authentically and finding pride and joy in loving women. It also involves advocating for equality and acceptance within society for all individuals regardless of their sexual orientation.

Q: What does Pride Month mean to you, and how do you celebrate?

A: Pride Month holds deep significance for me as it commemorates the Stonewall riots of June 1969, a pivotal moment in the LGBTQIA+ rights movement. It’s a time to celebrate the progress made in LGBTQIA+ rights, honor the struggles and sacrifices of those who came before us, and reaffirm our commitment to equality and acceptance for all.

To celebrate Pride Month, I engage in various activities that foster community, education, and visibility. This could include attending Pride parades or events, participating in LGBTQIA+ advocacy and volunteer work, supporting queer-owned businesses, educating myself and others about LGBTQIA+ history and issues, and amplifying LGBTQIA+ voices and stories through social media or other platforms. Ultimately, Pride Month is about embracing who I am, celebrating diversity, and standing in solidarity with the LGBTQIA+ community to create a more inclusive and equitable world.

Q: Can you share a positive experience or moment in your career where your LGBTQIA+ identity was celebrated or embraced?

A: In my experience, the majority of companies I’ve worked for since coming out have commemorated Pride in some form or another. This marks the first time I’ve openly shared my experience, and I found it to be incredibly rewarding.

Q: Have there been any challenges or obstacles related to your LGBTQIA+ identity that you’ve faced in your career, and how have your navigated them?

A: Thankfully, I haven’t encountered significant challenges in my career related to my LGBTQIA+ identity. Before applying to any position, I made sure to thoroughly research the company’s culture and values to ensure they were diverse and inclusive. This proactive approach has allowed me to feel supported and respected in the workplace.

Q: Are there any LGBTQIA+ role models or public figures who have inspired you in your personal or professional life?

A: There are countless LGBTQIA+ role models and public figures who have made significant contributions to society and have inspired me throughout my life, but a few are: Harvey Milk, Melissa Etheridge, Ellen DeGeneres, RuPaul and Neil Patrick Harris. There are also several allies that have done the same, such as RBG (Ruth Bader Ginsberg), Betty White, Lady Gaga, Cyndi Lauper, Jodie Sweetin, Kristen Bell, and Jamie Lee Curtis.

Q: What advice would you give to other LGBTQIA+ individuals navigating their careers, especially those who may be early in their journey of self-acceptance or coming out?

A: Navigating a career as an LGBTQIA+ individual can be both rewarding and challenging, especially for those who are early in their journey of self-acceptance or coming out. Here are some pieces of advice that may help.

  • Before anything else, focus on accepting and embracing your identity. Understand that you are worthy of respect, dignity, and success regardless of your sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression.
  • Seek out supportive environments, whether it’s within your workplace, community, or online. Surrounding yourself with allies and fellow LGBTQIA+ individuals can provide invaluable support and understanding.
  • Look for mentors within your field who are also LGBTQIA+ or allies. They can offer guidance, advice, and support as you navigate your career path.
  • Navigating a career as an LGBTQIA+ individual can be emotionally and mentally taxing at times so make sure self-care is a high priority. Do not hesitate to reach out for support from friends, family, or mental health professionals if you need it.

Q: Do you have any recommendations for TV shows, movies, books, or other media related to the LGBTQIA+ experience or created by LGBTQIA+ individuals?

A: There’s a wealth of TV shows, movies and books that explore the LGBTQIA+ experience or are created by LGBTQIA+ individuals. Here are some recommendations across various mediums:

TV Shows:

  • The Real World – many of the seasons
  • Ellen – all of her shows
  • Will and Grace
  • RuPaul’s Drag Race
  • The L Word
  • Orange is the New Black


  • The Kids Are All Right
  • Brokeback Mountain
  • Imagine Me & You
  • Boy’s Don’t Cry
  • Blue the Warmest Color
  • Better than Chocolate


  • Mommy, Mama and Me
  • Heather Has Two Mommies
  • Love, Ellen: A Mother/Daughter Journey
  • The LGBTQ+ History Book
  • When We Rise
  • The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to add or share about your experiences, aspirations, or reflections for Pride Month?

A: Everyone’s journey is unique, and it’s okay to take things at your own pace. Stay true to yourself, be resilient, and know that there is a supportive community out there ready to uplift and empower you.

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