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Santo Ragno

Santo Ragno

The David Chow Humanitarian 2015 Award

Santo Ragno

Santo Ragno is a first generation Italian American originally from the east coast. He works as a Travel Coordinator at Warner Bros Studios in Burbank, CA. He, along with his partner of 15 years, Billy Rugh co-founded Creative Planet School of the Arts. Creative Planet, School of the Arts is a private arts magnet dedicated to providing a space for accelerated Academic training, intense Arts education, creative expression, and community outreach. Creative Planet, a non-profit, private elementary school, provides students with personalized, high-energy instruction in both academics and the arts including all areas of dance, acting, music and visual arts. CPSOA offers an accelerated approach to K-8th grade academia that believes all students have the ability to achieve high levels of education when given the self-esteem, discipline, and opportunity to excel in a safe, nurturing and positive environment. In 2006, Santo received the Time Warner Andrew Heiskell Award Time Warner Chairman, Dick Parsons for his work with Creative Planet.

Santo met his partner Billy while singing with the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles in 2000. GMCLA, has been performing for more than 35 years. Santo has also toured with GMCLA to be the first gay chorus to sing in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Tallinn as well as the South American cities of Santiago, Montevideo, Buenos Aires, and Rio. Santo performed in concert in all these cities, while also reaching out to the AIDS community, providing nutritional supplies and moral support, assisting with budding gay choruses and providing general outreach to the LDBT communities.

In 2009 Santo and his partner Billy, along with 30 doctors and social workers, took six students from their school CPSOA to Arusha, Tanzania to work with local AIDS orphans, help set up an after-school arts program, and distribute food and mosquito netting to families. While there Santo, taught after-school visual arts classes with the students from the orphanage.

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