The "Reconstructing the Rainbow" conference starts Thursday at University of the Pacific.
The purpose of the conference is to build leadership among students, examine common issues of health and community building, and the political and legal battles still to fight.
UOP Director of Women's Resources Corrie Martin says much has changed for the gay community but much remains the same.
"My own experience, 5 and 10 years ago, I never would have imagined I could be married, I could be raising a child and yet all those things could happen in my life, at the same time, the challenges, the bias, the violence, all of those things are still very real," says Martin.
The keynote speaker will be the mother of Matthew Shepard - the 21-year old who was beaten and left to die because he was gay.
Steve Grand will perform. He's the first openly-gay male country singer, whose song "All American Boy" went viral.
Stories from Stockton
Stockton now ranks among the top 20 fiscally healthy big cities in the nation. This comes just two years after the city came out of bankruptcy.
Incarcerated parents in Stockton can now read stories to their children through audio recordings.
Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs is helping Stockton high school students have a better chance to find college aid.
The Stockton Arena is one of the host sites for the NCAA’s Division One Women’s Basketball sweet 16 and Elite 8 rounds in March.The event will have a huge economic impact on the city.
Michael Tubbs was sworn in as Stockton Mayor Tuesday night. His grandmother administered the oath of office.