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By | 2004-01-01T09:00:00-05:00 January 1st, 2004|Uncategorized|

Compiled by Sharon Gittleman

• HIV/AIDS summit meeting
On August 28, the Michigan AIDS Fund and the Metro Health Foundation presented the annual HIV/AIDS Summit. According to keynote speaker, Dr. Helene Gayle, increasing the number of peer educators would be the best way to help young gay men get more information about HIV. It would also help them develop the skills and support they need to abstain, use condoms or maintain faithfulness in order to reduce their chances of getting AIDS.

• Wilde Awards announced
The 2003 Wilde Awards ceremony brought out luminaries of the Michigan stage to the Gem Theatre in Detroit. The awards, sponsored by BTL, honor actors and productions that have achieved true distinction.
Four special honors were granted during the event. The Actors Theatre in Grand Rapids earned the Community Pride Award for their refusal to back away from performing the controversial play, “Corpus Christi,” The Committee to Save Meadowbrook won the Publisher’s Award for Excellence for their efforts to preserve the well-loved theater, an Angel Award was given to the BroadwayCares/EquityFightsAIDS for their service to the LGBT community and the Critic’s Choice honor was handed to retiring producers Johanna Broughton and Daniel Walker for their lifetime of good work.

• WRAP reduces staff
The Washtenaw Rainbow Action Project was forced to eliminate its executive director due to the organization’s financial woes. According to Board President Meredith Hochman, the group’s money problems were created by a decrease in member contributions over the previous six months.

• U of M course draws fire
A class taught at the University of Michigan brought down the wrath of anti-gay activist Gary Glen and drew media attention from throughout the nation. Professor David Halperin’s course, “How to be Gay,” examined how a sexual orientation had been turned into a cultural subset. Glenn demanded Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm stop funding what he described as “this militant political agenda.” Granholm ignored him.

• Gay candidates urged to come out
Many LGBT office seekers and behind-the-scenes movers and shakers stayed in the closet this election year, trading their self-respect for a seat at the political table. While Governor Jennifer Granholm’s press secretary Mary Dettloff spoke openly to BTL about her sexual orientation, other political figures were keeping quiet about being gay.
“I’ve lost my patience with people who don’t stand up and be bold and say, ‘I’m gay,’ or ‘I one hundred percent support gay marriage,'” said Leslie Thompson, executive director of Affirmations Lesbian and Gay Community Center. “I want to vote for the real candidate.”

• Aaron Billings died at age 27 of complications of diabetes. Billings was a member of the 2003 Michigan Pride Steering Committee.
• Governor Jennifer Granholm appointed Rudy Serra to serve on the Correction Officer’s Training Council. Serra is an attorney and a licensed social worker.
• Diane Hasty, 59, a founding member of Lesbian A-Sisters died at her home on August 15.

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.