Pelosi Supports LGBT History Month

Philly's Equality Forum counts down 31 icons

As Philadelphia gets ready to celebrate Outfest this weekend in honor of National Coming Out Day, the nation also honors LGBT heroes during each day of October for LGBT History Month. Recently, Former Speaker of the House – and one of the highest ranking women in U.S. government – Nancy Pelosi pledged her support of both the month-long event and the push for gay rights.

“LGBT History Month offers us an opportunity to honor the pioneers of the movement for LGBT rights and recognize the extraordinary contributions of LGBT Americans to our history and culture,” says Pelosi. “And it is a time to rededicate ourselves to the bedrock values of our nation: civil rights for every American; equality under the law; respect and dignity for all. During this LGBT History Month, we must remain firmly committed to the rights, equality, and progress of LGBT Americans.”

The month-long celebration, created by Philly-based Equality Forum, is part of the group’s education and activism efforts culminating in an annual symposium on LGBT issues every spring.

“Equality Forum is gratified by Representative Nancy Pelosi’s support for LGBT History Month 2011,” says Malcolm Lazin, Equality Forum’s executive director. “This follows the launch of LGBT History Month 2010 by Secretary Arne Duncan at the U.S. Department of Education. Started in 2006, LGBT History Month in October makes our icons visible and our historic civil rights movement empowering.”

So far this month, Kye Allums, John Ashbery, Alison Bechdel and John Berry have each been honored. Today, the spotlight’s on Dustin Lance Black, the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of Milk, the biopic starring Sean Penn about Harvey Milk, the gay San Francisco councilman who was assassinated while in office.

Click here for a full list of icons being celebrated this month.