Victory Fund endorses Obama-era ambassador for U.S. Senate

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Openly gay U.S. ambassador Daniel Baer, Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key.

The LGBTQ Victory Fund, which has the exclusive purpose of backing LGBT candidates running for political office, has thrown its support behind a former U.S. ambassador who served during the Obama administration and is running to become the first openly gay man elected to the U.S. Senate.

Annise Parker, CEO of the Victory Fund, announced the endorsement of Baer Monday in a statement that recalled Jared Polis’s 2018 victory in Colorado as the first openly gay man elected governor.

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Victory Fund endorses Pete Buttigieg

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Pete Buttigieg, left, and his husband, Chasten Buttigieg, speak at Brooklyn Steel in Brooklyn, N.Y., on June 28, 2019. The LGBTQ Victory Fund at the event announced it has endorsed Pete Buttigieg for president. Photo by Robert Byrne/Victory Fund.

The LGBTQ Victory Fund on Friday endorsed Pete Buttigieg for president.

More than 1,500 people attended the announcement that took place at Brooklyn Steel in Brooklyn’s East Williamsburg neighborhood. It coincided with the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots and WorldPride that is underway in New York.

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More than 300 attend Victory Institute conference in Colombia

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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BOGOTA, Colombia | More than 300 activists and elected officials from around Latin America attended an LGBTQ Victory Institute-organized conference that took place in the Colombian capital of Bogota from May 16-18.

Colombian Congressman Mauricio Toro, Venezuelan National Assemblywoman Tamara Adrian, Belizean Sen. Valerie Woods, Antiguan Sen. Akika Lake, Cuban National Assemblyman Luis Angel Adan Roble, Arizona state Sen. Tony Navarrete and Colorado state Rep. Brianna Titone are among those who attended. Claire Lucas, a prominent Democratic activist in D.C. who was previously a senior advisor at the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Office of Innovation and Development Alliances, and Juan Carlos Archila of Censurados, a group in the Colombian city of Cucuta that provides assistance to Venezuelans with HIV/AIDS, also participated in the conference.

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Tampa Mayor-Elect Jane Castor, equality organizations celebrate historic win

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | Tampa’s former chief of police Jane Castor made history April 23 when she was elected the city’s first openly LGBTQ mayor.

Mayor-Elect Castor faced retired banker and philanthropist David Straz in the city’s runoff election. According to unofficial returns from the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections, 23.19% of Tampa’s 230,193 registered voters cast 53,385 ballots April 23. Of the 53,144 votes cast for mayor, Castor received 38,854, or 73.11% of the vote. Straz received 14,290, or 26.89%.

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Lightfoot becomes first out lesbian, black woman elected Chicago mayor

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, Courtesy the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Chicago Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot (Photo courtesy of the Lightfoot Campaign)

The run-off election in Chicago April 2 resulted in a historic victory for Lori Lightfoot, who became the first openly lesbian and black woman elected mayor of the city.

The Associated Press called the race for Lightfoot, who was running against Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, at 8 p.m. local time.

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National Out to Win Day aims to increase LGBTQ representation

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Washington D.C. | The LGBTQ Victory Institute and 18 equality-focused partner organizations are participating in the first National Out to Win Day April 2, aiming to raise awareness about the underrepresentation of LGBTQ people holding elected office.

LGBTQ Victory Institute works to increase the number of LGBTQ people in public office and to provide programming, service, and other support to ensure their success. They advise that currently, LGBTQ people hold just 0.1 percent of elected positions in the U.S. despite being 4.5 percent of the population.

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Jane Castor poised to become Tampa’s first openly LGBTQ mayor

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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As Tampa highlights its diversity with the fifth annual Tampa Pride March 30, Jane Castor—the celebration’s two-time grand marshal and arguably one of the city’s most stalwart servants—will continue her journey to become Tampa’s first openly LGBTQ mayor.

Castor, who will face retired banker and philanthropist David Straz in Tampa’s runoff election April 23, is familiar with firsts. Ahead of her 31 years of service with the Tampa Police Department, which she began as a beat cop patrolling the city in 1983, she was elected the first female president of a Tampa Police Academy class.

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Gay mayor, veteran Pete Buttigieg signals entry into 2020 fray

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Pete Buttigieg, a combat veteran and mayor of South Bend, Ind., has signaled he plans to throw his name into the pool of 2020 presidential candidates, raising the possibility of a Millennial and an openly gay candidate joining the growing Democratic field.

Buttigieg announced in a video Jan. 23 he’s forming an exploratory committee for a 2020 bid, which is considered the first step in running for president.

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Kansas sees LGBT milestones, yet big change may come slowly

By : wire report
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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) | Kansas will swear in its first two openly LGBT state lawmakers next month and the new Democratic governor promises to end a ban on discrimination over sexual orientation or gender identity in state hiring and employment decisions once she takes office.

Yet other goals for LGBT-rights activists, such as expanding the state’s anti-discrimination law covering landlords and private employers, might not be much closer to fruition — despite a historic national wave of victories by LGBT candidates and Gov.-elect Laura Kelly’s promise to break with Republican predecessors on policy.

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LGBTQ candidates usher in historical Rainbow Wave

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Over 150 openly LGBTQ political candidates won their races nationwide in the 2018 U.S. midterm election, a historic Rainbow Wave.

154 candidates declared victory in a wide array of races. Each of the candidates was endorsed by the LGBTQ Victory Fund, the national group which exclusively endorses openly LGBTQ candidates.

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Lesbian marriage equality lawyer elected Mich. attorney general

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A lesbian lawyer who was a lead attorney in the lawsuit challenging Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage — one of several cases that led the U.S. Supreme Court to rule for marriage equality nationwide — has won election to become the next attorney general of the Wolverine State.

In an extremely close race that wasn’t called by media outlets until Nov. 7, Nessel, a Democrat and former prosecutor, won with 48.5 percent of the vote compared to the 46.8 percent claimed by her Republican opponent, Speaker of Michigan House Tom Leonard.

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Lesbian Angie Craig unseats anti-LGBT House lawmaker in Minnesota

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A lesbian candidate running for a U.S. House seat in Minnesota has unseated an anti-LGBT lawmaker from the U.S. House, making her poised to become the first openly gay mother in Congress.

At a around 8:15 local time on Nov 6, major media outlets declared Angie Craig, a business executive who’s also mother, the winner in her bid to unseat Rep. Jason Lewis (R-Minn.) and represent Minnesota’s 2nd congressional district.

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