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Durbin Fundraiser with Birch and McKeon

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U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin ( D-Ill. ) will be honored at a cocktail reception Oct. 26, featuring special guests Elizabeth Birch, executive director of the Human Rights Campaign, and Illinois State Rep. Larry McKeon ( D-Chicago ) . The reception is chaired by Michael Bauer, a gay political fundraiser and activist.

Durbin is an original co-sponsor of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. He is also an original co-sponsor of Hate Crimes legislation.

Tickets are $50, with proceeds to benefit Friends of Dick Durbin, to raise money for Durbin's 2002 re-election campaign. The reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 26 at Le Passage, 1 Oak Place, with its entrance on Rush St. Call Sara Barnett at ( 312 ) 527-3667.

In other political news, Michael J. Madigan, Speaker of the Illinois House, has appointed McKeon to replace outgoing Rep. Todd Stroger as Chairman of the House Labor Committee. The committee has primary jurisdiction over legislation affecting working families and labor relations. McKeon served as Vice Chair of the committee prior to his new appointment.

And Nancy Kaszak, former state representative, is announcing she will seek the 5th Congressional District post being vacated by Rep. Rob Blagojevich, who is running for governor.

Howard Brown adds Transgender to Mission

The Board of Directors at of the Howard Brown Health Center have amended the Center's mission statement to include transgender people. "The unanimous vote of the Board of Directors to include transgender individuals in our mission not only reflects our belief that this is the right thing to do, but also reflects our belief that Howard Brown Health Center currently provides high quality services to its transgender clients," said Randy Talcott, President of the Board of the center.

The center offers primary care and mental health services including support groups, hormonal therapies, STD/HIV testing, and vaccinations for its transgender clients. Recently, the center has hired a provider who specializes in youth and adult transgender comprehensive health.

The mission statement now reads: "The mission of Howard Brown Health Center is to promote the well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons through the provision of health care and research activities. Howard Brown Health Center designed these programs to serve gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons in a confidential, supportive, and nurturing environment. Howard Brown Health Center is committed to working cooperatively with other community-based organizations serving and contributing to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community." Call ( 773 ) 388-1600.

HBHC's Puttin' on the Glitz annual gala is Oct. 27 at the Chicago Hilton & Towers, ( 773 ) 388-8992.

Merchants donate

The Northalsted Area Merchants Association has donated $200,000 to the Community Center Project, for construction of Chicago's second community center for the LGBT community. The Center, which would replace the now-defunct Rodde Center, is planned for 3460 N. Halsted. The Project's general campaign goal is $4 million. Completion of the Center is scheduled for late 2003 or early 2004. See

Art Against AIDS Celebrates 10 years

The Art Against AIDS annual fundraiser is Friday, Nov. 2. The live and silent auction will be at the Drake Hotel.

The mission of Art Against AIDS is to raise funds to ensure the delivery of quality, compassionate care at Weiss Memorial Hospital responsive to the challenging needs of people affected by HIV and AIDS.

Weiss Memorial Hospital is the University of Chicago hospital which serves the North Side of Chicago.

Women in Trades Celebrates 20 years

Chicago Women in Trades ( CWIT ) , a non-profit which serves tradeswomen and women and girls interested in opportunities in the technical trades, celebrates their 20th anniversary with a dinner event titled "Twenty Years and Building!"

State Rep. Julie Hamos will be honored with the first annual CWIT Economic Equity for Women and Girls Award during the dinner event, for her advocacy work on behalf of women in the technical trades. Dinner guests will also welcome tradeswoman and author Peggie Carlson, one of the first female African American pipefitters. Carlson wrote of her nine-year work experience as a pipefitter in the 1970s for the Minnesota natural gas utility.

The dinner will be held at Reza's Restaurant, 432 W. Ontario, Nov. 8 at 5 p.m. Call ( 312 ) 942-1444.

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