||Neil Steinberg Is 2013 Jon-Henri Damski Award winner
From a press release
This article shared 3814 times since Sat May 18, 2013
Chicago Sun-Times columnist and author Neil Steinberg has been named winner of the 2013 Jon-Henri Damski Award, which honors individuals whose efforts and accomplishments uphold the principles for which Damski stood during his long career as both an activist and a writer for the LGBT press, announced long-time Damski friend and fellow activist Lori Cannon today. Steinberg will receive the award at a ceremony from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, at Sidetrack, 3349 N. Halsted Street, Chicago.
"Neil Steinberg's prominent and powerful voice has often been raised in support of LGBT equality, and against hate and bias," Cannon said. "He 'gets it,' and has uniquely portrayed the struggles for fairness in human, and distinctly Chicagoan, accounts of the community's lives and hopes. He's moved people, and increased their understanding in a way no other mainstream Chicago writer has done.
In his latest book, You Were Never In Chicago (University of Chicago Press, 2012), Steinberg remembers Damski as:
"…the gay community's Socrates, and he certainly was that, a scruffy man of truth, haunting the neighborhood, challenging passersby over their preconceptions. He was a wise man, and made everyone he encountered wiser for having met him."
At the time of his death, Damski was the longest-running columnist published in the American gay and lesbian press, having written for publication every week from November 8, 1977 until November 12, 1997, writing for various publications including Gay Life, Gay Chicago Magazine, Windy City Times and the Free Press. Damski is also considered the first gay columnist in the American Midwest to publish under his real name and photo, starting in January, 1979, when no legal protections existed in the city of Chicago to give one recourse if fired from a job, or forced from housing, due to sexual orientation. Damski's epigrams, columns and poetry have been gathered in several collections and anthologies.
Jon-Henri Damski was considered one of the people most instrumental in helping to pass Chicago's Human Rights Ordinance in 1988, which granted protections in jobs and housing to members of the gay and lesbian communities within the city. In this campaign, Damski worked closely with activists Arthur Johnston (Damski's close friend and benefactor), Rick Garcia, and Laurie Dittman; working under the auspices of the organization Gay and Lesbian Town Meeting, the quartet became widely known as the "Gang of Four." Damski was considered especially influential in securing support for the Human Rights Ordinance from conservative aldermen who had in the past opposed the bill. In 1990, Damski worked to pass Chicago's hate crimes ordinance. In 1991, Damski was inducted into the City of Chicago's Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame for his years of writing and his activism. In 1997, Mayor Richard M. Daley and the Chicago City Council presented Damski with a Proclamation for his two decades of service to the city of Chicago and its gay, lesbian and transgendered communities.
Neil Steinberg is a native of Ohio, a Chicago Sun-Times columnist since 1995 and a staff member there since 1987. Previously he wrote for various publications, including Esquire, Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, Details, Men's Journal, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Newsweek-Japan, Granta, Spy, National Lampoon and Chicago. He has written seven books, including his 2012 You Were Never In Chicago, and he is a nationally renowned speaker.
This article shared 3814 times since Sat May 18, 2013
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