History of Gay Chicago TV

Gay Chicago TV emerged through multiple conversations over the summer of 2011 into a creative web-based television station geared toward the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community of Chicago. Its vision was to further establish a positive example of LGBTQ people both for the LGBTQ community and the whole of Chicago, to support LGBTQ small businesses of Chicago and to fill a gap in mainstream media.

After a very successful soft launch on December 2011, Gay Chicago TV has launched its official first season that consist of 15 shows, as well as Gay Chicago TV’s first original  Miniseries “Shelter City”

Gay Chicago TV is partially a response to the “It Gets Better” campaign started after the suicides of young LGBTQ individuals during the fall of 2010 gained national media attention. “It Gets Better” was and is an amazing campaign to help young LGBTQ people who are struggling with bullying, depression, or family issues to see that where they are in this very moment is temporary. It is a grain of hope in a moment of despair, but we want to push it further and show how good it gets. Gay Chicago TV shows the breadth of the LGBTQ community in an easily accessible and mainstream way to create an environment where young people, as well as others outside the LGBTQ community, can truly see the reality of the “It Gets Better” campaign. Gay Chicago TV shows that we are not only LGBTQ, but also neighbors, family, and friends. We are doctors, lawyers, teachers, comedians and chefs. We go on dates, we have partners and kids. We are everyday people and in the end that is how good it gets. It also brings LGBTQ issues to the heterosexual community and mainstream media firsthand from an LGBTQ perspective.

Additionally, Gay Chicago TV also cares for Chicago, our communities and our businesses. As the internet has expanded both in content and in geographical reach, there has been a growing focus on global issues, creating a lack of local coverage. It is now easier to find out about an election outcome halfway around the word than who our local politicians are or where they stand on important issues. With the economy at an all time low and small businesses failing, Gay Chicago TV helps those small businesses that support Chicago’s LGBTQ community by highlighting their business through filming on location and showing that there are small businesses in our community that Chicago’s LGBTQ community needs to support in return for their support of our community.

Finally, Gay Chicago TV brings television back to the days of quality content with audience participation by taking shows “to the streets” and by creating a platform to showcase creative content from members of the Chicago LGBTQ community. There are few outlets for LGBTQ talent that can reach the masses. Gay Chicago TV knows there is a plethora of talent within the LGBTQ community that deserves the chance to be seen and heard. It created a space just for that purpose; to highlight our artists, filmmakers, musicians, comedians, and more.

As Gay Chicago TV grows we hope to continue to support our mission of being a part of and supporting Chicago’s LGBTQ community through interactive creative content, highlighting local business and talent, and spreading a message of hope within the LGBTQ community and beyond.


Jhonmar Castillo

Interactive Creative Director