Tim Sweeney, Patricia Barela Rivera Receive ADL Civil Rights Awards

  • February 28, 2013

Over 100 civic leaders and community members gathered on February 27 to honor Tim Sweeney and Patricia Barela Rivera, recipients of ADL’s 2013 Civil Rights Awards.

Patricia Barela Rivera has spent her career working for greater opportunities for women and minorities.  As the first female and first Hispanic District Director for the U.S. Small Business Administration, she assisted small businesses in their formation and growth. She focused much of her efforts on outreach to underserved communities, including ethnic minorities, women, veterans and disabled individuals.  When she was the Director of Citizen Advocacy and Outreach for the Governor’s Office in the 1990’s, she oversaw Colorado’s Diversity Plan, the first of its kind in the nation.

Tim Sweeney has been president and CEO of the Denver-based Gill Foundation since October 2007. For more than 30 years, he has worked to advance equality for all people regardless of sexual orientation or gender expression.  Tim began his career working with Harvey Milk to defeat a proposition in California that would have banned gay people from teaching in public schools.  His work since then has led to greater equality and fairer treatment for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people across the country, including anti-discrimination laws, hate-crime laws, access to health care, and the movement for equality in civil marriage.

Rivera and Sweeney shared with the crowd why they have devoted their careers for creating equal opportunities for all people.

The event was co-chaired by Civil Rights Committee Chairs Craig Fleishman, John Plotkin and Monica Rosenbluth.