UCSF Radiology Nurses, Staff, Trainees Share What Pride Means to Them

June 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of LGBTQ+ Pride traditions. Though traditional in-person Pride festivities may be cancelled this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the UC San Francisco Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging, along with the UCSF LGBT Resource Center, celebrate our communities at home and in our hearts. We asked members of our department to share their thoughts on what Pride means to them. Some shared their own personal thoughts while others shared quotes by public figures that resonate.


Outwardly changing my gender presentation at work was something I felt unable to do until I was in radiology residency. That meant I applied for a fellowship at UCSF expressing one gender and arrived expressing a different one. Although there are always bumps on the path of transition, I felt not only accepted but also positively embraced by my colleagues in UCSF Radiology.

UCSF Radiology clinical fellow, 2020

I am a true native San Franciscan. In fact, I was born right here at UCSF Parnassus. I have seen this city grow and morph into what is one of the premiere cities in the country. I love that EVERYONE feels welcomed here. In spite of today's climate of social unrest and much-needed attention to equality, I am proud to live in a city that represents inclusion and acceptance. These are just a few reasons why so many flock here and stay. #citybythebay.

Kimberly Moore 

2020 has been a tumultuous year. The COVID-19 pandemic and the unlawful death of George Floyd have caused lots of pain in our country and across the world. Pride Month was designed to celebrate the spirit of diversity and inclusion. It has been hard at times to grasp the outcome of these two important events and I hope that we all take time to celebrate the lives we have lost.

This year, also marks the 50th year of the Stonewall riots. The riots started when New York City police raided the Stonewall Inn in New York City. This raid manifested itself into six days of nonstop protests and clashes.

I reflect and recall what my former colleague, and UCSF diagnostic Radiographer, Nick Grillo, CRT, RT(R), would say if he was alive today. Nick was a champion of inclusion and diversity. In fact, he went out of his way to ensure new employees and students that come into the radiology department always feel welcomed. Nick lost his battle to ALS in May 2016. The California Society of Radiologic Technologists (CSRT) website has a memoriam which states, “He possessed qualities that set him apart as a humanitarian. He cares little about money, and more about people."

I also reflect on the opportunities and hope I have for everyone. Nick embodied what being dignified meant. He championed the UCSF PRIDE values and ensured everyone he met also shared the same values. We are at the crossroads right now, and my hope is that everyone takes time to reflect during this Pride Month.”

David Poon, principal radiologic technologist, supervisor

“After years of advocating for equality I was finally able to marry my partner on our 25th anniversary! Soon, we will be celebrating our 30th! Today, we celebrate our life together and share this moment with our two children and granddaughter. For some, the marriage certificate changed nothing. For me - it meant I no longer had to worry about what would happen if I ended up in the hospital, or if I passed away. How would I take care of my husband if he did not have access to my retirement? What about the home that we built together? These worries are gone. We must continue to speak-up. And in honor of George Floyd - for those brave soldiers that are marching for equality because Black lives do matter - for all of the LGBTQ advocates past and present - let's continue to advocate for equality for all. Let's celebrate Pride in unity. And remember ...In world where you can be anything you want to be - BE KIND!

Silence = Agreement so let's all speak up!”

Daniel Dominguez Moncada, sr. director of administration, Radiology 

Daniel and Edgardo Moncada

Pride Month is one of my favorite times of year because it is a time to reflect on the importance of love and kindness for all. Love knows no limits and no definitions. In my personal nursing practice, I work to incorporate that same love and kindness to my patients and their families. Love is love. Happy Pride Month!

Sarah Wells, MSN, RN, CEN, CNL

“I'll never forget the first time I marched in a Pride parade. I was in my twenties and a teacher at a language school with students from all over the world, mostly young adults just out of high school. I hadn't come out to my students, but I didn't see myself as in the closet either. It just hadn't come up.

I was marching with my boyfriend and the non-profit he worked for at the time, the Positive Resource Center, which provided career services for HIV-positive people. I didn't really have a special Pride outfit, just jeans and a Positive Resource Center t-shirt, and my job was to walk alongside the tire of a car carrying a local TV celebrity whose name I can't remember, a straight but flamboyant woman who did movie reviews on the local news and was known as a strong ally of LGBTQ people.

Along the parade route, I heard shouts of my name and looked over to see a huge group of my language students all waving and cheering. I felt like a celebrity myself! I waved and smiled my face off. If you've been to a Pride parade, you know there's a lot to see, but that moment really stood out for me.

The next week at school, I started to hear that my appearance in the parade was the talk of the school. In some cases, the gossip was not positive. A teacher witnessed a student saying my name to another student and then throwing a limp wrist and grinning.

My feelings were hurt of course, but I didn't see any advantage in trying to demand students be disciplined. They had seen me out and proud, but they hadn't had the opportunity to talk to me about it, and shame and mockery remained their main reaction. I decided to make it a teachable moment.

For each of my classes, I prepared a lesson about myths and attitudes toward LGBTQ people, tailored to the language level of the students. I started each lesson by telling the class, ‘Recently I marched in the Pride in San Francisco, and you may have seen me there. I'm gay and proud of it, and I want you to know you can talk to me about it.’ Then I started the lesson. In some of my lower level classes, there couldn't be much discussion due to the language barrier, and some students clearly didn't know what to say. In my intermediate and advanced classes, the discussion was intense.

‘Why were you just wearing jeans and a t-shirt? Everyone else was in drag or rainbow clothing,’ asked the young woman who had been observed by another teacher mocking me. ‘Not everyone. People express their Pride in different ways. I don't feel comfortable in drag, and I don't particularly identify with the rainbow flag, but I'm still gay,’ I replied.  

Another student came out in that class as well, a German woman, and she talked with great emotion about the prejudice and hatred she had faced all through school. Both of us began to answer the questions from the other students together. As I suspected, many were very curious and had never had the opportunity to talk to an openly gay person.

A young Chinese man from my beginner class came out to me privately, and told me he was learning English so he could move to Canada to be with his boyfriend. His parents didn't know he was gay. We became allies, talking whenever we ran into each other in the hallway.

Talking to my students about being gay gave me a strong sense of the privilege I had to be able to live in the Bay Area, where I could be out at work, and know that my boss and my co-workers would support me. It's a huge part of why I'm here today, and why I feel so proud to work at UCSF, where all kinds of diversity are celebrated, and where we can have the kinds of difficult conversations, I had with my students almost 20 years ago. I'm proud that our mission to advance health worldwide encompasses the urgent need to break down the barriers of hatred and prejudice, not just in the Bay Area, but around the world.”

Thomas McElderry, chief financial officer, Radiology

Below are additional quotes from public figures submitted by UCSF Radiology staff.

Knowing that we can be loved exactly as we are gives us all the best opportunity for growing into the healthiest of people.

Fred Rogers (submitted by Hanh Ryan)

When all Americans are treated equal, no matter who they are or whom they love, we are all more free.

Barack Obama (submitted by Teri Moore)

Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted, when we tolerate what we know to be wrong, when we close our eye and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy or too frightened, when we fail to speak up and speak out, we strike a blow against freedom and decency and justice.” 

Robert F. Kennedy (submitted by David Poon)