News and Updates
Jane Marquardt is a activist, grandmother, attorney, seeker of good health, writer, and occasional Huffington Post contributor.
The National Center for Lesbian Rights, Kate Kendell, and The Audacity to Fight for Justice
My wife, Tami, and I were fortunate to be in San Francisco for the 41st anniversary celebration of the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR). Along with celebrating NCLR’s work, the 2,000 plus people gathered at the Palace of Fine Arts were honoring my long-term friend Kate (Kathy) Kendell as she retires at the end of 2018 from 22 years of being the Executive Director of NCLR. Along with tributes to Kate, the program gave special honors to the two plaintiffs in Doe vs. Trump, the NCLR lawsuit challenging President Trump’s ban on transgendered people serving in the military. Listening to these two individuals (ages 20 and 22) address the crowd, I was inspired and realized that we really are now living in a world that Kate Kendell helped create.
The new utah pride center
Since its opening in 1992, the Utah Pride Center has been a staple in Utah’s LGBTQ+ Community. With a vision of a thriving LGBTQ+ community in Utah, the Utah Pride Center has faced challenges and always come out on the other side stronger. In May of 2018, UPC opened the doors of its brand new space on 1380 South Main Street and introduced their incoming Executive Director, Rob Moolman.
Tami and I have been long time supporters of UPC and we were thrilled to visit the new space and meet Rob and catch up with friends.
hONORING THOSE WHO RUN TOWARDS FIRE
Last week our house just missed burning to the ground. From a glass half full perspective, last week our house was saved. I feel self-indulgent to even be focusing on it, because as I write this there is a raging fire in Northern California. Thousands and thousands of people have been forced to flee, hundreds of homes have been burned to the ground, people have died. Here in Utah, there are at least six active wildfires burning today. As my wife, Tami, noted this morning on our neighborhood walk in this valley-wide smoky air, “It seems like the earth is smoldering.” Yet in the midst of wildfires and national political chaos (where it seems like our country is divided into two acerbic camps who have no chance of understanding one another), our fire gave us the chance to experience a fabulously functioning local government and the generous and courageous actions of family and friends.
Peace. Love. Opportunity.
The specific notion of equality extends beyond just fair treatment under the law and into the realm of equal access to opportunities for all people to achieve their full potential.