Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01



Chicago event launches Victory Fund milestone celebrations
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times

This article shared 1128 times since Wed Sep 21, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

The Victory Fund and Institute kicked off its 25th anniversary with a champagne reception Sept. 18 at Ignite Glass Studios in the West Loop.

Victory Fund Campaign and Institute Board Chair for the Midwest Region Eric Nelson welcomed the 150 people in attendance and spoke about Victory Fund and Institute President and CEO Aisha Moodie-Mills' vast political experience ahead of her remarks. He also noted they've endorsed 200 candidates nationwide this election cycle.

Moodie-Mills said that during a recent panel discussion she was asked what keeps her up at night. She explained that it's the false sense of power people ascribe toward the LGBT community which isn't true. Moodie-Mills indicated that in terms of LGBT elected officials ( about 500 nationwide ) there's been a plateau for the past 10 years and that's left the community extremely underrepresented in most parts of the country.

"The good news is we're now in a political environment where we're able to provide opportunities for LGBT candidates in parts of the country that seemed unviable just one or two election cycles ago," said Moodie-Mills.

Among the many LGBT candidates running across the country, Moodie-Mills singled out two state representative races of note—retired Navy Captain Jane Campbell, who's running for office in North Carolina, and Beth Tuura, who's running for the seat where Orlando's Pulse nightclub is located.

"Most states aren't as fortunate as Illinois," said Moodie-Mills. "You have an embarrassment of riches here. Whereas some states have few or no openly LGBT elected officials, Illinois has 28 … Illinois is one of only 14 states rated at a high level for LGBT equality, so congratulations to you for all the work you've done."

During his keynote address, Iowa state Sen. Matt McCoy spoke about his own coming out story and how the Victory Fund impacted his first political campaign 14 years ago.

"The Victory Fund has provided me with so many tools, so much support and so much training over the years," said McCoy.

McCoy noted that his presence at the table when legislators were discussing LGBT issues matters more than one can imagine in obtaining a positive legislative result. He said that LGBT victories can evaporate overnight if anti-LGBT people are elected to statewide or national offices or appointed to the federal courts including the Supreme Court.

U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley ( vice-chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus ) and Cradles to Crayons Executive Director and former Equality Illinois CEO Bernard Cherkasov received the Champion of Equality Award. In addition, DOW Chemical Company received the Corporate Equality Award, with DOW USA President Pedro Suarez accepting on the company's behalf.

Illinois state Rep. Kelly Cassidy was on hand to present Cherkasov with his award while Moodie-Mills presented Quigley and DOW Chemical/Suarez with their awards.

Cassidy spoke about the work Cherkasov did to ensure equality in the state and noted Illinois is one of only a handful of states to ban conversion-therapy practices on LGBT youth.

Cherkasov chronicled his family emigration to the United States from Azerbaijan, which had an anti-Semitic government. He said his parents saw the States as the land of fairness and equal opportunity.

"We have to be able to share our own stories and make our own case for equality," said Cherkasov. "This is part of the work the Victory Fund does."

Quigley explained that in order to obtain nationwide equality for the LGBT community, it's imperative to elect Hillary Clinton as president and shift both houses of Congress to Democratic control. He noted that with Democrats in control progressive legislation, including the Equality Act, will be able to pass through both houses of Congress and be signed into law.

"This recognition is very important to us," said Suarez. "I believe that an inclusive workplace, and for that matter society, that welcomes and respects everyone is one that enables citizens to thrive and economies to grow. Inclusion is the true catalyst for success."

Suarez noted that DOW will continue to work on state and federal LGBT issues because for them full inclusion is the endgame.

Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Commissioner and Victory Institute board member Debra Shore received the first ever leadership award which has been named her—the Debra Shore Leadership Award. This award will be given to a person or entity each year who has demonstrated the kind of leadership Shore has done on behalf of LGBT equality. Mike Holloman, chair of the Victory Institute board, presented Shore with her award.

Shore noted that unlike other LGBT organizations, the Victory Fund has avoided mission creep by being lean and adapting as time marches on. She explained that every state that achieved marriage equality legislatively prior to the 2015 Supreme Court ruling had at least four openly LGBT people in their state legislatures. Shore praised the work Moodie-Mills has done this past year and called on attendees to join the Victory Cabinet.

Sponsors included Barnes and Thornburg, LLC, Center on Halsted, Christy Webber Landscapes, Clark Pellett and Robert Kohl, state Sen. Heather Steans, Ronna Stamm and Paul Lehman, Jon Lehman and Zach Huelsing, Sommers and Fahrenbach, Inc., Shore, Michael Grover and Nunzio Lupo and Louis A. Vega /The DOW Chemical Company.

Receptions will also be taking place in Palm Springs, Los Angeles, New York City and Nashville in the coming weeks and months.

See for more information .

This article shared 1128 times since Wed Sep 21, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

Chicago announces strategic plan to address gender-based violence, human trafficking 2021-09-27
--From a press release - CHICAGO — On Sept. 27, Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot launched the City's first-ever citywide strategic plan to address gender-based violence (GBV) and human trafficking. The work to build this plan began in February 2021 when Mayor ...

Gay News

Liz Cheney: 'I was wrong' to oppose same-sex marriage 2021-09-27
- U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney said—in a segment of the CBS show 60 Minutes that aired Sept. 26—she was "wrong" to oppose same-sex marriage when her objection to it caused a public split with her family, including ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Danica Roem, 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' abortion appeal, Lambda Legal 2021-09-26
- Transgender Virginia legislator Danica Roem is facing a conservative marriage-equality opponent and former Trump administration member in her re-election race this November, Yahoo! News noted. Roem, a Democrat, was elected to the House of Delegates in ...

Gay News

WORLD Marches, world leaders, Swiss marriage, soccer match 2021-09-26
- Thousands of people including soldiers and diplomats marched peacefully through the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv in an annual Pride parade despite some opposition to an event called off last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters ...

Gay News

Chicago's holiday cultural and arts events to reopen for in-person 2021-09-23
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) today announced DCASE fall and holiday programming as Chicago's vital arts scene continues to safely and fully reopen. In-person holiday ...

Gay News

Equality Illinois CEO Brian C. Johnson on new book, 'Our Fair Share' 2021-09-22
- In Equality Illinois CEO Brian C. Johnson's new book, Our Fair Share: How One Small Change Can Create a More Equitable American Economy, he posits that receiving a Citizen Dividend will help all U.S. residents achieve ...

Gay News

America250 to host LGBTQ+ Community Conversation Webinar Sept. 23 2021-09-22
--From a press release - Washington, D.C. —America250, the nationwide commemoration of America's 250th anniversary in 2026 led by the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission, will host its next Community Conversation on Thursday, Sept. 23, at 4 pm ET. Members of the LGBTQ+ ...

Gay News

LGBTQ blood donation discrimination assessed, PULSE shootings cited 2021-09-21
--From a press release - Chicago, Ill. — Last week, Reps. Mike Quigley (IL-05), Val B. Demings (FL-10), Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), Adam B. Schiff (CA-28), Barbara Lee (CA-13), and Ritchie Torres (NY-15) received a ...

Gay News

Equality Illinois 'deeply troubled' by investigation into pro-LGBTQ teacher 2021-09-20
- Equality Illinois issued a press release stating it is "deeply troubled" after a DuPage County teacher is being investigated for posts about LGBTQ history and racial justice. The videos, which were reposted to Twitter in early ...

Gay News

Chicago Ald. Cappleman attacked 2021-09-19
- On the night of Sept. 18, Chicago Ald. James Cappleman was attacked in the Uptown area of the city, The Chicago Tribune reported. Cappleman, in charge of the 46th Ward, is one of five members of ...

Gay News

WORLD Germany's compensation, Lyra McKee, LGBTQ Afghans, tennis player 2021-09-19
- Germany has compensated almost 250 people who were prosecuted or investigated under a Nazi-era law criminalizing homosexuality, according to euronews. By September, 317 people had applied for compensation for their ...

Gay News

Patrick J. Kennedy to receive award from Trilogy at virtual gala 2021-09-18
- Chicago-based Trilogy Behavioral Healthcare will present its Partner in Recovery Award to The Kennedy Forum founder, mental-health advocate and former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy as a part of its virtual 50th-anniversary gala on Thursday, Oct. 21. ...

Gay News

Polis marriage marks first same-sex wedding of sitting governor 2021-09-17
- On Sept. 15, Colorado Democratic Gov. Jared Polis wed longtime partner Marlon Reis—marking the first same-sex marriage of a sitting U.S. governor, NPR reported. Polis keeps making history. In 2018, Polis became the first openly gay ...

Gay News

Hastert settles sexual-abuse lawsuit 2021-09-16
- Days before a trial was set to begin, former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert reached a tentative settlement in a hush-money lawsuit filed by a man whose decades-old sexual-abuse allegations led to the politician's downfall six ...

Gay News

Now, only five of Chicago's 50 aldermen reject automatic pay raises 2021-09-16
- Forty-five out of 50 Chicago aldermen have opted to accept a 5.5% pay increase in 2022 that will push the highest paid among them to an annual salary of more than $130,000, according to The Chicago Tribune. ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.