Voice for Equality: “Rocky” Anderson

Anderson was Mayor of Salt Lake City, Utah, from 2000 to 2008, where he was known for his groundbreaking advocacy for responding to climate change; his awards and honors include the Climate Protection Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the League of United Latin American Citizens' "Profile in Courage" Award. He is currently the President of High Road for Human Rights.

Anderson has publicly supported marriage equality since his 1996 bid for Congress.

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Voice for Equality: Carolyn Peterson

Peterson is currently serving her second term as mayor of Ithaca, New York. She's also the first female mayor in NY.
In her first term as mayor, she allowed same-sex couples to apply for marriage licenses in Ithaca and vowed to fight in court if the applications were denied-- and promised to recognize same-sex out-of-state marriages.
She said, "Two individuals wish to commit their lives to each other. They deserve the protections and benefits, as loving partners in our society, as others who currently can do so legally... I firmly believe that same-sex partners should have equal protection as other married couples do."

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Justice Richard N. Palmer

Justice Palmer wrote the majority opinion for the Connecticut Supreme Court case (pdf) which granted marriage equality for same-sex couples in Connecticut. He wrote:
"Interpreting our state constitutional provisions in accordance with firmly established equal protection principles leads inevitably to the conclusion that gay persons are entitled to marry the otherwise qualified same-sex partner of their choice."
Palmer has served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Connecticut since 1993. Previously, he was appointed to the position of US Attorney for Connecticut. He teaches law & ethics at Quinnipiac and Yale.

Nominated by: Ben Bernard.

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Jerry Brown

Brown is currently the Attorney General of California, but no newcomer to California politics-- he's also the former Governor of California (1975-1983), former Mayor of Oakland, CA, and former California Secretary of State!

He was recognized by Time Magazine for pioneering post-Watergate politics by opposing the Vietnam War, repealing tax breaks for "big oil," enacting anti-crime measures, and championing environmental affairs.

Brown is a vocal advocate that the Supreme Court of California strike down Proposition 8 as unconstitutional on the grounds that Prop 8 takes away an inalienable right. His office argued this position in March 5, 2009 oral arguments before the Court, a position he reinforced in a popular piece on the blog The Huffington Post on December 19, 2008.

Thanks to Ben for nominating Jerry Brown to be a Voice for Equality!

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Deval Patrick

The latest nomination for "Voices for Equality" is Deval Patrick, who was elected Governor of Massachusetts in 2006 after working for the Clinton administration as the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division.

A strong supporter of marriage equality, Governor Patrick stood against placing an anti-marriage referendum on the Massachusetts ballot: "People come before their government as equals... If the government is going to give marriage licenses to anyone, it has to give them to everyone, regardless of whether the spouse you choose is of the same gender."

In 2008, he also overturned a 1913 anti-miscegenation law, effectively allowing same-sex couples from out of state marry in Massachusetts. Also in 2008, Patrick's daughter publicly came out as lesbian.

Governor Patrick was nominated by Jonathan Herczeg to be a Voice for Equality.

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Antonio Villaraigosa

Villaraigosa is the mayor of Los Angeles (since 2005) and the city's first Latino mayor in over 100 years. Villaraigosa is also the former speaker of the California State Assembly.

Mayor Villaraigosa officiated at L.A.'s first same-sex marriage in June 2008.
On November 15, 2008, Mayor Villaraigosa addressed thousands of protesters at City Hall to demand equality for all and to protest the passage of Proposition 8.

Margaret nominated Antonio Villaraigosa to be a Voice for Equality.

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Willie Brown

Former mayor of San Francisco (1996-2004). Brown also served more than three decades in the California State Assembly-- 15 of them as speaker. He's known for his social policy and public safety reforms as mayor, and known in the legislature for decriminalizing sodomy in 1975. In his first mayoral term, he signed the Equal Benefits Ordinance (1996), extending domestic partner benefits to same-sex couples in San Francisco-- although he recognizes that partnership benefits and civil unions are ultimately insufficient for marriage equality. He said in 2003, "Couples of any sexual orientation ought to enjoy the same rights and privileges as heterosexual couples, period." Needless to say, he was a vocal opponent last November of California's Proposition 8.

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Ron Dellums

Ron Dellums has served as mayor of Oakland, California since 2007. He was previously a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served on the House Committee on the District of Columbia and the House Armed Services Committee.

On June 16, 2008, Dellums officiated in the City Council chambers at Oakland's first weddings of same-sex couples. He said, "[Marriage] is a fundamental right to which all people are entitled and I am proud that I can officiate the eternal unions of these Oakland couples."

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Voice for Equality: Gavin Newsom

Newsom was elected the 42nd mayor of San Francisco in 2003. After his first month in office, Mayor Newsom took a strong step towards marriage equality by granting marriage licenses to same-sex couples in San Francisco.

He opposed Proposition 8 from the start, speaking frequently on the subject and writing several pieces for The Huffington Post advocating marriage equality and opposing Proposition 8.

In response to the Supreme Court of California's decision to end marriage discrimination, Newsom wrote:

"Communities are reaching the conclusion that separate is not equal and we should not harm our friends, neighbors and co-workers by denying them equal treatment under law."

Thanks, Jon, for another great nomination!

**Make your NOMINATION for a Voice for Equality today!

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Voice for Equality: Adrian Fenty

Adrian Fenty was elected Mayor of Washington, D.C. in 2006.

That year, he responded to a GLAA survey, stating: "I support full civil marriage between partners of the same sex... Same-sex marriage is a question of fairness and equality." In 2008, Mayor Fenty ordered a review of the city's legal options to recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages, although a deicsion has not yet been made.

Best known for education reform and his public safety initiatives, Fenty has previously served as the lead council for the DC Council Committee on Education, Libraries, and Recreation.

Ben Bernard nominated Mayor Adrian Fenty as a Voice of Equality. Thanks, Ben!

**NOMINATE your own Voice for Equality today: tahlib@freedomtomarry.org

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