Who We Are

Empress I José, The Widow Norton 1922-2013

Empress I José, The Widow Norton 1922-2013

In 1965, the late José Sarria, the country’s first openly gay political candidate (for San Francisco Supervisor in 1961) founded the Imperial Court System, setting our standard of humor, heart and humanitarianism, which today governs approximately 70 kingdoms in the United States, Canada and Mexico. Today, the International Court System is one of the largest LGBT organizations in the country, second only to the Metropolitan Community Church.

The Imperial Court of New York was founded in 1986 under the reign of Their Imperial Majesties Emperor I George and Empress I Sybil Bruncheon. We are now in our 31st Reign under the monarchy of His Most Imperial Sovereign Majesty Emperor XXVI Harrington and Her Imperial Majesty Empress XXIX and Regent Empress XXXI Madison Mansfield. Our membership includes Lords and Ladies, Dukes and Duchesses, Princes and Princesses — all enjoying the “game” of court and royalty while raising much needed social awareness and money for deserving charities in the tri-state area.

The Court is a social, fundraising organization which has raised millions of dollars for social service and health support organizations. In addition to our own fundraising, we often lend our support and talent to other organizations in their ventures by performing, volunteering or just adding beauty and style! Our members are people who have chosen to make a commitment, get involved and make a difference in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Our membership is broad and varied: lawyers, carpenters, therapists, ministers, stockbrokers, hairdressers, marketers, performers, accountants, teachers, florists, antique dealers, jewelers and more!

We are glamorous. We are fun. We are everywhere.

See Become a Member for more information about how you can get involved.