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Trailblazers: Profiles of America's Gay and Lesbian Elected Officials

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Trailblazers: Profiles of America’s Gay and Lesbian Elected Officials (winner of the Victory Foundation Civic Leadership Award) is a quick reference to the most comprehensive list of the country’s openly gay and lesbian officials. You’ll read about 14 of these representatives in greater depth, getting to know them personally and professionally.

Trailblazers identifies representatives from local, state, and national levels from all over the country. In each profile, you’ll examine the relationship between the elected official and his or her constituency. You’ll also explore public reactions to openly gay and lesbian politicians, some of whom are also ethnic minorities, and how this affects the job that they do. Trailblazers offers an in-depth, personal look at the lives of some of the politicians involved in the history of gay and lesbian activism over the last 20 years. Specifically, you’ll read about the lives of:

  • Tina Podloski, a lesbian mother and Seattle Councilwoman
  • Tom Duane, a New York Councilman with HIV
  • Sabrina Sojourner, an African-American lesbian shadow representative in Washington, DC
  • William Weybourn, the founder of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, which helps to elect gay and lesbian candidates to public office
  • Jose Plata, a gay Hispanic Dallas School Trustee

    In addition to giving you keen insight into the lives of these officials, Trailblazers can help you if you decide to run for election, putting a checklist of campaign dos and don’ts at your fingertips. An enlightening book about the private and public achievements of our gay and lesbian politicians, Trailblazers is a valuable addition to any personal or professional library.

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Editorial Reviews

The author, an openly gay elected official himself, profiles 12 others whose political lives have run from 1972 to the present. The profiles, which are based on interviews, discuss each individual's career and interests and also incorporate discussion of such events and issues as the Stonewall Riots, Anita Bryant's Save the Children crusade, the overturn of St. Paul's gay rights ordinance, AIDS, California's AIDS quarantine initiative, the 1993 March on Washington, gays and the military, the Defence of Marriage Act, child custody, and the lesbian baby boom. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780789002990
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 12/8/1998
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Contents Acknowledgments

  • Introduction
  • The Longest Serving Openly Gay Elected Official in America: Minnesota State Senator Allan Spear
  • Triumph in a County Where Defeat Is the Norm: Dade County Judge Victoria Sigler
  • On This Six to Eight Inches of Top Soil: Mayor Bill Crews, Melbourne, Iowa
  • Love Is All It Takes to Make a Family: Seattle City Councilwoman Tina Podloski
  • Even Potholes Can Be Interesting: San Diego City Councilwoman Chris Kehoe
  • Living, Fighting, and Governing with HIV: New York City Councilman Tom Duane
  • Politics in a War Zone: Dallas School Trustee José Plata
  • Climbing the Political Ladder: California Assemblywoman Carole Migden
  • The Outing of a Republican Gay Mayor: Mayor Neil Giuliano,Tempe, Arizona
  • Working for a Fair and Equitable Society: U.S. Shadow Representative Sabrina Sojourner
  • Taking Destiny into Their Own Hands: A Portrait of West Hollywood
  • With Each Election Comes a New Spring: Victory Fund Founder William Waybourn
  • The Making of a Candidate: A Personal Memoir
  • Campaign Checklist for Gay and Lesbian Candidates
  • Appendix A: A Selected Chronology of Gay and Lesbian Elected Officials
  • Appendix B: Listing of Gay and Lesbian Elected Officials
  • Notes
  • Index
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