James Brechney says he’s moving “onwards and upwards”.

Article by Jess Jones,

Outspoken Sydney Mardi Gras director James Brechney has resigned from the board.

Brechney announced his resignation on Facebook this week, writing that he had been reflecting on how best to dedicate his volunteer time in 2018.

He spoke highly of the group, saying, “I am so proud of the organisation rejuvenating its activism roots over the last 12 months.”


Brechney was re-elected to the board last year, following controversy over Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull being uninvited from the 2017 Mardi Gras parade.

He was criticised at the time for publicly calling Turnbull a “dickwad”, in comments the board distanced itself from.

Next year’s Mardi Gras program has just been released, promising a huge 17 days of events leading up the iconic parade.

“The 40th anniversary next year is going to be incredible—and I can’t wait to produce my fifth float!” wrote Brechney, who will also be MCing some of the events in the program.

“Thanks to everyone who twice supported my candidacy in 2014 and 2016—it meant a lot to me… It was incredible.

“Love you all. Onwards and upwards!”

He added that the move will enable him to try and spark change from outside the Mardi Gras board.

“As most know it has been hard for me to be outspoken, as I always am, and also function as a Board member at Mardi Gras.

“I also wonder if change can be best achieved from within a system or from the outside. Probably a bit of both.

“But I’ve been on the inside for three years now, so it’s time to be an outsider again.”

A spokesperson for the board thanked Brechney for his time and contributions as a director.

“Every director who contributes their time and energy to sitting on the board of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras makes a huge contribution to the organisation and to the community,” they said.

“The SGLMG board is a volunteer board and we are very grateful for the time James has put into his role on the board. James has done a great job and contributed a huge amount of new ideas, especially regarding how Mardi Gras engages in the social justice space, which is an area of particular importance to us.

“We are really excited to see how James continues to contribute to the community in exciting ways and we especially can’t wait to see what fabulous revelry he has in store for us at the parade in 2018.”