7 black LGBTQ leaders in honor of Juneteenth and Pride month

A scene from a party at the then-NYC Gay Community Center in 1990.

(CNN)African Americans have long celebrated the legacies of leaders like Rosa Parks, Malcolm X and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., all formidable forces for change within the black community and beyond.

But as Americans celebrate Juneteenth -- the unofficial June 19 holiday marking the abolition of slavery in the US -- it's important to remember that these figures don't represent the whole of black activism.
For decades now there has been another battle for civil rights happening in the black community, one that history has largely overlooked: the struggle for equality and respect by LGBTQ black Americans.
"Pride month, to be clear, is an extension of Black History Month," says David J. Johns, Director of the National Black Justice Coalition. He cited the efforts of a transgender black activist who helped spark the Stonewall uprising in New York City 50 years ago -- "one member in a long legacy of young queer people who fought for the rights of others."
    This Juneteenth it's important to remember that black Americans' struggle for independence and enfranchisement continued long after slavery ended.
    So here is a list of LGBTQ black advocates who, facing oppression from both the black community and white society, lived by the idea that we aren't truly free until all of us are.

    Audre Lorde

    Audre Lorde was a well-known author and poet whose work explored civil rights, the complexity of the black experience and the oppression that she witnessed in her communities.
    Lorde, who died in 1992, advocated for the rights of both queer black women and others who weren't part of the mainstream feminist movement.

    James Baldwin

    Author, essayist, writer, and activist, James Baldwin was a true son of the Harlem Renaissance.