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Community Member Spotlight: Aleksa Manila

by Shaun Knittel – SGN Associate Editor ‘Be gracious. Always.’ That is what local drag icon Aleksa Manila said she reminds all of her drag children to be whenever they find themselves in a tough situation. I think it is only fitting to begin this community spotlight feature on Aleksa Manila with that quote, because as those of you who know her would agree, Aleksa really is gracious – always. She is often referred to as ‘The nice one.’ No, I’m not talking about the comparison some locals might have between Aleksa Manila and the fabulous Gaysha Starr. (Seriously, racist people who think all Filipinos look alike get them confused all the time.) I’m talking about people referring to Aleksa and whomever. She is the nicest one. And it’s not an act. She’s the real deal. I’ve been around Aleksa for five years now. We’ve produced shows, co-hosted fundraisers, marched down the street for equal rights and more. If she were fa

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