Former Miss Kentucky Djuan Trent joins Southerners for the Freedom to Marry

Today, Djuan Trent, who won the title of Miss Kentucky in 2010 and finished in the Top 10 of the Miss America competition in 2011, signed on as the newest honorary co-chair for Southerners for the Freedom to Marry, the $1 million public education campaign that Freedom to Marry launched in partnership with 15 state and regional partner organizations, including the Fairness Campaign of Kentucky, to increase support for marriage for same-sex couples across the South.

Djuan Trent explained today:

We all want the same thing: love. It cuts pretty deep to exclude someone from marriage and tell them that their love is invalid. Rather than judge, I think we could all learn a lesson from love: it doesn't discriminate.

Djuan Trent is the first-ever national pageant contestant to come out as LGBT, and she attributed her announcement earlier this year to Kentucky’s divide over the freedom to marry and a February court ruling declaring that married same-sex couples should be respected as married in Kentucky.

Freedom to Marry's National Campaign Director Marc Solomon thanked Djuan for her advocacy today. He said:

With a powerful ruling by a Republican judge just a month ago, support for marriage is rapidly growing in the Bluegrass state. As Kentuckians talk to each other about why marriage matters, they are reaching the conclusion that it is wrong to deny gay and lesbian couples the freedom to marry the person they love. The momentum is undeniable and Freedom to Marry is proud to be working alongside Djuan Trent to build support in Kentucky and win marriage nationwide.

Djuan Trent is one of 14 honorary co-chairs of the bipartisan program, which also include U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, Congressman John Lewis, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, Mark McKinnon (chief adviser to President George W. Bush), singer and author Lance Bass, and TV producers Harry Thomason & Linda Bloodworth-Thomason. 

Learn more about Southerners for the Freedom to Marry HERE