Marriage takes center stage in the 2012 Out 100
November 15, 2012
Every year, Out magazine celebrates the end of the year by choosing 100 of the most compelling lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans people in the world. The list is a grab-bag of actors, singers, politicians, activists, sports figures, and writers, and it's always an exciting countdown.
In this year's Out 100 - which has only been partially announced so far in the magazine's month-long reveal - the freedom to marry is taking center stage. In addition to profiling a number of outspoken advocates who have pushed for the freedom to marry, the magazine has also spotlighted a number of our same-sex couples who are close to our hearts at Freedom to Marry - including board member Jordan Roth, National Engagement Party honorary host committee members Thomas Roberts and Patrick Abner, and trailblazing military couple Will and Erwynn.
Here's a rundown of some of the honorees!
Jordan Roth: The all-star theatre producer, who sits on the board for Freedom to Marry and assisted us earlier this fall as an honorary host committee member for our National Engagement Party, was named the "Impressario" in this year's countdown. The acclaimed producer has had a huge year: In addition to continuing to enjoy success with the outstanding The Book of Mormon, he also won a Tony this year for his production of Clybourne Park, and he tied the knot with his longtime partner Ritchie Jackson. Read the profile.
Thomas Roberts and Patrick Abner: Roberts, one of the top anchors at MSNBC, is the first openly gay news anchor on a major news network to marry his partner. The happy couple celebrated in September, just a few weeks before serving on Freedom to Marry's National Engagement Party's honorary host committee. The Out 100 profile quotes Patrick, who works as an HIV community liaison for pharmaceutical company Merck, saying, 'I never imagined in a million years that I would be on a stage kissing my male partner, spouse - husband, Thomas is saying - in front of my father. And to be able to do that and have not just my father, but my whole family be proud of me? That's something special." Read the profile.
Will Behrens and Erwynn Umali: Earlier this year, Will Behrens and Tech Sgt. Erwynn Umali became the first same-sex couple to host a wedding ceremony on a military base. Since they hosted the ceremony in New Jersey, where they live together, the ceremony was officially a civil union ceremony, which provides some, but not all, of the protections and responsibilities of marriage. Still, the couple is a trailblazer, and their inclusion in the Out 100 celebrates a new era of out military professionals. In our post-DADT world, gay and lesbian service members can celebrate their love and commitment in similar ways that straight service members can. The Out 100 profile gives some insight into their ceremony. It says: "When Umali cautiously inquired about being married at his base, he got another surprise. 'They said that no one had ever asked about doing that, but one thing led to another,' he says. 'They had to approve it all the way to the Pentagon.' Their experience suggests that institutions may adapt to change more quickly than families. At their wedding, the military chaplain defied his own Southern Baptist background to bless their union, and Umali's military colleagues mingled with their friends and relatives as if DADT had never existed." Read the profile.