It is a magazine aimed at a niche audience, self-financed and supported by many volunteers. But all that didn’t stop lstw magazine – a magazine created by and for lesbian, bisexual, trans and queer women and people – from taking home the 2023 Magazine Grand Prize at the latest Canadian Magazine Awards gala.

The magazine lstw competed against big names such as Châtelaine, Maclean’s, Toronto Life…

“We can’t hide our Friday surprise,” concedes Florence Gagnon, founder and creative director of lstw. A nice surprise, therefore, welcomed with open arms, and which comes at an opportune time for the LGBTQ communities.

“At the moment, we are living in different contexts, whether it is with our neighbors to the south, very recently in Europe, and even here, where we are really privileged people, but where we are still experiencing micro-aggressions, says Florence Gagnon. There is a setback in terms of laws, but also in terms of subtexts. We need to live these moments of pride there. »

lstw is a bilingual print magazine, published once a year, and distributed in over 20 cities in North America and Europe. Its mission: to promote positive role models who challenge stereotypes. The team has contributors from all over the world, which “really gives the pulse of the community and reflects the diversity of it”. Each issue is around 250 pages and the team “couldn’t cut it down so much [it] gets great material,” says Florence Gagnon.

The award-winning issue, “Special 10 Years”, offers a retrospective of key moments of the lstw organization through stories, photos and interviews. On the program, in particular, meetings with singer-songwriter Charlotte Day Wilson and with Cree Ojibway artist and activist Ma-Nee Chacaby.

“Putting forward positive stories, I think it’s super important,” concludes Florence Gagnon, who highlights the great teamwork behind the creation of the magazine.