International Mr. Leather [Edit]

International Mr. Leather Logo

International Mr. Leather (IML) is an international conference and contest of leathermen held annually in May since 1979 in Chicago, Illinois.

The International Mr. Leather conference is a multi-day and activity event to recognize International Mr. Leather. Shared interest events, such as speakers, socials, themed dance parties and a leather market are part of ways in which the competitors become known to the evaluating committee and enthusiasts, including the BDSM community, can share in the experience.

IML is an international recognized distinction with an informal relationship with how contestants qualify: contestants must either be a winner of a lower level feeder competition of a bar, local or regional leather contest or be sponsored by a leather-related bar, business, club, or organization.

The forerunner of the competition was the 1970s “Mr. Gold Coast” bar contest held at Chicago’s Gold Coast leather bar, owned by Chuck Renslow and his then-partner, Dom Orejudos. The “Mr. Gold Coast” contest became one of the bar’s most popular promotions causing the need to locate the competition to a larger venue (1979), and title change to International Mr. Leather. The International Mr. Bootblack Competition was added (1993) to the IML program.

The Leather Archives and Museum has placed IML in a trust (May 2009) with event profits to benefit the museum.

In 2010 IML was inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame.

IML Contest

Preliminary round

Contest finalists are selected following:

  1. A preliminary interview with each of the nine judges, up to 8 minutes in length, are held in private (60% of the preliminary score).
  2. Stage presence and personality at a Saturday “Pecs and Personality” event (40% of the preliminary score).

The judge’s highest and lowest scores for each contestant in each criteria are dropped, and the contestant’s remaining seven scores are tallied to determine the 20 contestants with the highest combined scores to proceed as finalists at the Sunday IML contest event. The only time that the dropped scores are included in the tally is when there is a tie for the 20th place; the contestants in question have their dropped scores included in the tally but if the stalemate continues then each of the nine judges must vote for only one of the two contestants. Preliminary judging scores are not carried forward. There are also two tally masters.

Final round

Each of the 20 finalists is judged at the Sunday IML contest on a scale from 0 to 100 in the following order:

  1. Leather image (up to 40 points).
  2. Presentation skills that include a contestant speech (up to 40 points).
  3. Physical appearance (up to 20 points).

The highest and lowest scores for each finalist are dropped, the remaining seven scores are added together, and the top three scores designate the second runner-up, first runner-up, and winner, International Mr. Leather. A tie for the title is resolved by adding to the tally the dropped scores of the two contestants; if the stalemate continues then each of the nine judges must vote for only one of the contestants in question.

IML Winners

Year Winner Title City/State/Country
1979 David Kloss Mr. Leather Brig San Francisco, CA
1980 Patrick Brooks Mr. Leather Australia Sydney, NSW, Australia
1981 Marty Kiker (sponsored) San Francisco, CA
1982 Luke Daniel Mr. Drummer San Francisco, CA
1983 Coulter Thomas Mr. Texas Leather Houston, TX
1984 Ron Moore Mr. Leather Colorado Denver, CO
1985 Patrick Toner Mr. Chaps San Francisco San Francisco, CA
1986 Scott Tucker Mr. Philadelphia Leather Philadelphia, PA
1987 Thomas Karasch Mr. Leather Europe Hamburg, Germany
1988 Michael Pereyra Mr. Leather San Diego San Diego, CA
1989 Guy Baldwin Mr. National Leather Association Los Angeles, CA
1990 Mark Ryan Mr. Boston Leather Boston, MA
1991 D Cannon Mr CC Palm Springs Hollywood, CA
1992 Lenny Broberg Mr. San Francisco Leather San Francisco, CA
1993 Henri ten Have (sponsored) Amsterdam, Holland
1994 Jeff Tucker Mr. San Jose Leather San Jose, CA
1995 Larry Everett Mr. Oklahoma Leather Collinsville, OK
1996 Joe Gallagher Mr. Leather New York New York, NY
1997 Kevin Cwayna Mr. Minnesota Leather Minneapolis, MN
1998 Tony Mills Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather Washington, DC
1999 Bruce Chopnik Mr. Rocky Mountain Leather Denver, CO
2000 Mike Taylor Mr. Heartland Leather Cincinnati, OH
2001 Stefan Mueller Bavarian Mr. Leather Munich, Germany
2002 Stephen Weber Mr. Texas Leather Dallas, TX
2003 John Pendal Mr. Hoist London, United Kingdom
2004 Jason Hendrix Mr. DC Eagle Washington, DC
2005 Michael Egdes Mr. Ramrod Ft Lauderdale, FL
2006 Bo Ladashevska Mr. Leather Montreal Montreal, Canada
2007 Mikel Gerle Mr. Los Angeles Leather Los Angeles, CA
2008 Gary Iriza Mr. Palm Springs Leather Palm Springs, CA
2009 Jeffrey Payne Mr. Texas Leather Dallas, TX
2010 Tyler McCormick Mr. Rio Grande Leather Albuquerque, NM
2011 Eric Guttierez Mr. Leather Europe Paris, France
2012 Woody Woodruff Mr. Michigan Leather Waterford, MI
2013 Andy Cross Mr. San Francisco Leather San Francisco, CA
2014 Ramien Pierre Mr. DC Eagle Washington, DC
2015 Patrick Smith Mr. Los Angeles Leather  Los Angeles, CA
2016 David “Tigger” Bailey Mr. New Jersey Leather Howell, NJ

See Also

Title Contests
Tallymaster

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