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Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01



Rising Stars:

This article shared 1568 times since Wed Jun 20, 2001
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Packii Berry

Born: July 5, 1982

Profession: Freshman at Northeastern Illinois University majoring in political science; actor with About Face Youth Theatre. Berry is a member of Horizons' youth program and was described by her nominator as "a leader among her peers." She is a media specialist with Hotline 21, the weekly live cable show of Horizons youth program. She is one of the first openly gay youth to serve on the Youth Advisory Council for the Department of Children and Family Services and works on behalf of LGBTQ youth within the system. "Packii has built a reputation as a charismatic leader and hard worker," her nominator said. Her plans include a career in law, where she plans to be "the next Johnnie Cochran."

Andre Gardner

Born: Nov. 19, 1981

Profession: Student at DePaul University, actor with About Face Youth Theatre

Within months of starting to attend Horizons youth drop-in in 1999, Gardner became a peer educator for the program. In February 2000, he joined the About Face program, and sits on its Youth Advisory Council. He sits on the Executive Board of Pride DePaul, attends the GLSEN Youth Summits and participates in a educative theater program at DePaul. He received the Human First Award with About Face earlier this year. Gardner has also carried on after losing his mother on National Coming Out Day in 1999.

Amanda Geppert

Born: Feb. 20, 1973

Profession: Development officer for the Office of Medical Center Development at the University of Chicago. Geppert has been a consistent source of support and enthusiasm for both the American Civil Liberties Union and Reeling: The Chicago Lesbian and Gay International Film Festival for several years running. She is the co-chair of this year's Girls on Top event for the ACLU and will serve on the festival and steering committee for Reeling.

Nicole Hass

Born: April 19, 1977

Name: Nicole Hass

Profession: Muralist; art group organizer. Since moving to Illinois from Wisconsin a year ago, Hass has busied herself by becoming an activist around a range of issues, including the death penalty, racial matters and children. She also publishes the zine God in a Box. Before arriving here, she created a gay youth crisisline in Milwaukee and served on the board of the Wisconsin AIDS Project. She also worked on the political campaigns of open lesbian Tammy Baldwin and Russ Feingold.

Kelli Henderson

Born: Dec. 10, 1975

Henderson is a 1988 graduate of the U. of Michigan where she received a BA in sports Management and communications. She is an employee of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. She is active in Chicago 2006, Lesbian Community Cancer Project, Urban Solutions and Toastmasters International.

Jessica Kane

Born: Nov. 25, 1977

Profession: Organizer, Campaign for Better Health Care. Through her work with the Campaign, Kane has been able to blend her organizing skills, her GLBT activism and her knowledge of Spanish to expand and enhance the agency's services.

Charna Linsk

Charna, whose openly gay father Nathan Linsk is a co-founder of the Oak Park Area Lesbian and Gay Association, helped found her Oak Park River Forest High School Gay Straight Alliance.

Chris Matthews

Chris moved to Chicago in August of last year and has been volunteering in the community. He is a member of the Chicago Choral Ensemble and volunteer tutor at the McCormick Boys and Girls Glub. Currently he is volunteering for the Hearts Foundation, AIDSCare, Chicago 2006 and Windy City Black Pride.

Raul Montes

Born: March 31, 1983

Profession: Actor with About Face Youth Theatre, two years; supervisor at local department store, two years.

In addition to participating in the last two About Face productions, Montes is active with Horizons' youth program and helped to organize the Skokie Snowball event. He has lived independently since he was 17 and is "compassionate, caring and dedicated to social justice through theatre and the arts," his nominator said.

Mark Rosenburg

Born: July 22, 1974

Rosenberg proudly represented Chicago in this year's International Mr. Leather competition, finishing in the top 20. His nominator noted that "he spoke well about the issue of safer sex and young gay men—and he has wit and charm. Men his age will listen to him." He is a recent transplant to the area, moving here after being discharged from the Army late last year, and he has made the most of his short time here.

Kelli Strickland

Kelli is the leader of Bailiwick's Lesbian Theater Series, where she performed in Brave Smiles last summer, and was featured in both the All Girl Review in 2000 and 2001. In addition, she has been on the faculty of Loyola University for several years.

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