CELEBRATING THE TIES THAT BIND
The 17th Annual Mr. L.A. Leather Contest will take place on Saturday April 2, 2016 at the historic Globe Theater in Downtown LA’s Broadway Theater District. Ten men will compete to succeed Mr. LA Leather 2015 Patrick Smith, who went on to win the International Mr. Leather title in March of last year.
PHOTOS BY DUSTI CUNNINGHAM
Mr. Christopher St. West Leather 2016
Jeffrey received his BA in Business Administration from the University of Washington in 1987. After a career in hotel management, Jeffrey went to law school in Los Angeles and obtained his Juris Doctor degree from Southwestern University School of Law in 1995. Jeffrey’s law practice is focused primarily on civil matters, including business and contract disputes, as well as domestic partnership matters. Currently, Jeffrey sits on the Board of Directors of the ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, which is the world’s largest collection of LGBT literary, educational, historical, and cultural materials and resources. Jeffrey has previously served on the Boards of Directors of the Lesbian and Gay Lawyers Association of Los Angeles as well as the National Lesbian and Gay Law Association.
Mr. Sister Leather 2016
Originally from a small town in rural Ohio named Champion, Joe moved to Chicago in the late summer of 1999. Chicago afforded Joe the opportunity to experience more diversity than small town Ohio, and to explore his growing interest in leather and kink. It was in Chicago where Joe went to his first leather bar and experienced the physical attraction, and emotional connection, to other leather men. During his 15 years in Chicago, Joe discovered what he wanted out of his personal and sexual life, and really embraced who he was… he could finally live his “true” life. Joe moved to LA in August 2014, where he is currently a project manager for a large pharmaceutical company.
Mr. Regiment 2016
Matthew is an artist, writer, and activist who lives on the West Side. Back when he had spare time he volunteered in the community and had articles published promoting gay rights and liberal politics. Raised in an anti-gay household, he considers the leather community his adopted family.
Mr. Sanctuary Leather 2016
Michael’s journey into fetishism and leather got off to a rocky start; a bad experience at a young age pushed him away. However, after an “amazing experience” at DomCon five years ago, where he was flogged by Mistress Cyan, his passions exploded and he began his journey into the wonderful world of kink. Flogging became a main interest for Michael, the exchange of power, the feel of a flog, the trust involved were all very captivating, he says. While entering the leather world took him some time—after getting to know the community and choosing to remove his own mental restraints he pushed to be himself, a gender-fluid, fetishist, semi-fem weirdo. He found acceptance and love once he did, he also found a family.
Mr. SoCal Leather 2016
Eric moved to L.A . to pursue his love of film and television. After working in the media and PR industry his work shifted more towards community activism and outreach. Eric began working with a local LGBT publication which brought him into the leather community. Eric dove head first into the community, wanting to learn education, kink, and share his experience with those who are questioning, curious, or lost. Currently is an advocate for PrEP. Eric works with minority communities both locally and nationally, advocating for education and linkage to care for those in need. He currently serves as a member of the Thrive Tribe Friends, UCLA/Black Aids Institute HIV/AIDS Fellowship, Generation KP, The Los Angeles LGBT Youth Center, and Minority Aids Project. He is also a founding member of the SoCal/Southwest ONYX group.
Mr. LA Leather Bear 2016
Born and raised in Los Angeles, David shares his life with his husband and best friend Jim Koller-Cosio. They have been together for 21 years and legally married for 8 of those years. David was a member of the “The Campers,” a camp drag performance group in the mid 1980s. Based in L.A. at Oil Can Harry’s, the group toured all over California and the southern states. Some of his passions in life are helping people in need. One of these projects was helping with the non-profit, Sacks for Life, helping to feed the homeless. David has volunteered at the LA Gay and Lesbian Center and also volunteered at Long Beach Pride and supported many other charity events.
Eagle LA Mr. Leather 2016
Monty moved to Los Angeles in 1998 to pursue a career as an actor. He landed two agents and booked several jobs. After a life altering gastric bypass surgery in 2001 Monty lost 220 pounds and was no longer considered for character actor roles. He bounced back and forth from LA to NYC—working in the club scene for several years. Currently Monty is an executive at the the largest rehab facility in Malibu and prides himself on helping others—passing judgement on no one who deals with addiction and is trying to be sober. Monty is looking to forward to marrying his fiancé David Bonneau this spring.
Mr. Oil Can Harry’s 2016
Caleb moved to L.A. last year to pursue a life of love and happiness. Caleb did not shy away from social interaction when he first moved here, diving head first into the community by supporting events and offering to help where ever possible. He is an avid reader and enjoys traveling, exploring, and immersing himself into new cultures and experiences.
Mr. Bullet Leather 2016
Jason has enjoyed leather for many years but it wasn’t until he moved from the O.C. to L.A. and saw his first leather event that he knew that he wanted to be a leather man. He was impressed by how hot, inviting and thrilling the leather community made him feel and wanted to share that feeling with others around him. Jason is passionate about the ongoing and growing problem of homeless LGBT youth. With his title as Mr. Bullet 2016 he wants to highlight the issue and continue working for our next generation.
Mr. Pistons Leather 2016
Kelly was a bartender at The Frat House in O.C., where he participated in many functions for the LGBT community. Kelly battled meth addiction for eight years until it almost took his life. During that time, he was also diagnosed with having HIV. It was through the “grace of the powers that be,” friends and family that he was able to recover to a healthier state and help those seeking to break the grip of meth addiction. Kelly has spent the better part of 2015 exploring his kinky side and experiencing new adventures. He has helped with the Leather Tent during Long Beach Pride, the Off Sunset Street Festival and is “super excited” to see what he can do during his title year.