LGBTQIA Rights

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Kate Bornstein

Through performance art pieces like Kate Bornstein Is a Queer and Pleasant Danger and The Opposite Sex is Neither, Kate Bornstein questions society’s understanding of gender as a binary.

Jamie Lee Curtis

Hailed as the “Scream Queen” for her 1978 film debut in Halloween and her work in other slasher films, Jamie Lee Curtis defied expectations through her roles in A Fish Called Wanda and The Heidi Chronicles.
Woman Silhouette, cropped

Being a Woman

by Leiah Moser

For me—and, I imagine, a lot of other trans women out there—the recent flurry of media attention around the appearance of Caitlyn Jenner in Vanity Fair has given rise to a whole complicated array of feelings, not the least of which may be longing for a time when everybody will finally stop talking about Caitlyn Jenner.

Leslie Feinberg

A working-class lesbian, transgender activist, and communist, Leslie Feinberg became an important voice for lesbians of hir generation with the publication of hir powerful 1993 novel Stone Butch Blues.

Jeanne Manford

In 1973 Jeanne Manford’s fierce love for her gay son in the face of national condemnation of homosexuality led her to create a support network for other families, Parents of Gays, later known as PFLAG.

Amanda Simpson

A skilled pilot and aeronautics engineer, Amanda Simpson made history in 2010 when she became the first openly transgender presidential appointee, as senior technical advisor to the Bureau of Industry and Security.

Harriet Perl, 1920 - 2013

In my imagination, she was a well-adjusted spinster whose heroes were Hemingway, Faulkner and Fitzgerald. But in the packed sanctuary that day, people spoke of a much greater hero: Ellen DeGeneres.

Nicolette Mason

Body-positive blogger Nicolette Mason has become a leader in creating and celebrating fashion for women of all sizes and shapes.

Judith Light

In her four decades as an Emmy- and Tony-winning actress, Judith Light has repeatedly taken on challenging and unconventional roles, from a housewife-turned-prostitute on One Life to Live to ex-wife of a transgender woman on the acclaimed Transparent.

Hanne Blank

Both as a historian and as a fiction writer, Hanne Blank has questioned how we relate to our bodies and our sexuality, from gender norms to fat-shaming.
Andrew Sullivan at his Wedding

Know Hope: Learning Civil Rights with Andrew Sullivan

by Sophie Edelhart

Andrew Sullivan came into my life when I entered high school. At that time, he was writing a blog for the Daily Beast called “The Dish” and I read it Every. Single. Day. He wrote about politics in Washington, the Iraq War, different facets of American culture, conservatism, Christianity. But what he is best known for his role in the fight for same sex marriage.      

Topics: LGBTQIA Rights

Lesley Gore’s “You Don’t Own Me” Climbs Billboard Charts

February 1, 1964
"I don’t care what age you are—whether you’re 16 or 116—there’s nothing more wonderful than standing on the stage and shaking your finger and singing, ‘Don’t tell me what to do.’” - Singer Lesley Gore

Idina Menzel

A longtime star of the Broadway stage, Idina Menzel became the first person ever to claim both a Billboard Top 10 slot (for Holiday Wishes in 2014) and a Tony Award (for Wicked in 2003).

Leslie Feinberg, 1949 - 2014

And in the reflection of the glass, finally, literally and metaphorically, I could see myself, and Leslie, at once. I think I started to understand what I could be in that moment, that I belonged to a proud tradition of Butch women. That there was a place for me in this world. That I could grow up. For the first time, I understood that I was looking at who and what I would become as an adult. It was breathtaking.

Leslea Newman

A proud lesbian feminist writer, Lesléa Newman made history in 1989 with her controversial children’s book, Heather Has Two Mommies.

Deborah Wasserman Schultz

An outspoken Democrat, Debbie Wasserman Schultz was entrusted with great responsibility for the party both in the US House of Representatives and as chair of the Democratic National Committee.

Martine Rothblatt

CEO Martine Rothblatt’s fascination with interconnectivity led her to found both GeoStar and Sirius Radio, but it was her drive to save her daughter’s life that led her to create biotech company United Therapeutics Corporation.

Dr. Ruth Westheimer / Jaclyn Friedman

Sex Educators

Teaching Women About Their Bodies, Their Rights, and Their Pleasure

Miriam Zoila Pérez

As the founder of Radical Doula, Miriam Zoila Perez created a network for birthing coaches to support people of all genders, races, and economic backgrounds through pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, and abortion.
Mount Holyoke Convocation

Mount Holyoke, My Alma Mater, Giving ALL Women a Voice

by  Miriam Cantor-Stone

It’s the time of the year for new beginnings, and many schools and universities are starting the 2014-2015 academic year this week. My alma mater, Mount Holyoke College, annually hosts Convocation, a welcoming ceremony celebrating new students and the graduating class with music, speeches by the College President among other esteemed professors and guests, and a picnic. Some of my fondest memories from my four years at MHC are from Convocations, but it looks like this year’s ceremony has left all of the others in the dust. 

Evelyn Torton Beck

Evelyn Torton Beck made contributions to women’s studies and the Jewish community through her scholarship and her efforts to ensure lesbian inclusion in Jewish life.

Barbra Streisand

Barbra Streisand’s outsized personality, combined with her voice and acting talents, made her one of the most successful performers of the twentieth century.

Elizabeth Slade Hirschfeld

Elizabeth Slade Hirschfeld’s search for a way to make a difference led her first to become a Freedom Rider and then a public school teacher.

Dianne Feinstein

Dianne Feinstein made a career of political firsts, as first female gubernatorial candidate and first female senator for the state of California.

Barbara Boxer

Barbara Boxer earned a reputation as a powerful voice for liberal causes by leading the charge on issues like sexual harassment, the Iraq War, and marriage equality.
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