The winners of the 24th Annual Lambda Literary Awards were announced on lipez-rMonday night, June 4, 2012, during a sold-out gala ceremony hosted by comedienne Kate Clinton at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City. RPCV writer Richard Lipez (Ethiopia 1962–64) writing at Richard Stevenson, won the Gay Mystery award for his novelred-white-black-blue Red White Black and Blue, published by MLR Press.

Taking place the same week of Book Expo America — the book publishing industry’s largest annual gathering of booksellers, publishers, and others in the industry — the Lambda ceremony brought together over 400 attendees, sponsors, and celebrities to celebrate excellence in LGBT literature.

As “mastress” of ceremonies, Clinton treated the audience to her brand of topical, political comedy. She joked, “If you’re here to buy a Big Gulp or smoke a cigarette in a park . . . you’ll have to go to New Jersey.”

Later she described Michele Bachmann as “the SkyMall of useless ideas.” Clinton also set her target on the conservative right and their attack on women’s reproductive rights.

Presenters included Olympia Dukakis, Charles Busch, Frank Bruni, Ally Sheedy, and Ross Bleckner.

Awards were presented in twenty-four categories. Among the other winners (besides Lipez) were Farzana Doctor for her novel, Six Metres of Pavment, Justin Vivian Bond for Tango: My Childhood Backwards and in High Heels, and Rahul Mehta for his debut collection of short fiction, Quarantine.

Once again, congratulations, Lipez!