Gay Teen Receives Prom Queen Crown

Sergio Garcia, an openly gay L.A. teen, was crowned prom queen last week.

ByABC News
May 28, 2009, 3:04 PM

May 29, 2009 — -- When an openly gay high school senior was voted prom queen at his Los Angeles high school last weekend, the school's students and officials not only accepted it, they basked with pride in being one of the most diverse and tolerant schools in the nation.

"Tears were almost falling down my face," said Sergio Garcia, 18, of the moment he was named prom queen at Fairfax Senior High School in Hollywood Saturday night, where he beat out eight girls for the crown.

"It was a really emotional moment," Garcia told

When asked what he thinks his award says about his school, Garcia did not hesitate to attribute his new title to the tolerance his school has for what might seem out of place to others.

"No matter what your race or religion or sexual orientation, there is acceptance and there is hope," said Garcia of Fairfax High.

The school's principal, Edward Zubiate, told that Garcia's crowning is a reflection of the unique student body.

"Fairfax High School is smack dab in the middle of everything here in Los Angeles," said Zubiate. "We have one of the most diverse schools in the nation.

"I mean that not just racially, but that we also represent a lot of lifestyles," he added. "Tolerance is a really big issue for us.

Zubiate said that in addition to being located in Hollywood, neighborhoods comprised of Jews, Latinos and a large gay population surround the perimeter of the school.

According to Zubiate, 50 percent of the student body is Latino, 20 percent is African American and another 20 percent is Asian. There are 2,600 students at the high school, nearly 550 of which will graduate alongside Garcia.

"We are in a very diverse area," he said. "And if you're growing up in that kind of world, it's going to build in tolerance. It just naturally does."