Last night’s 61st Primetime Emmy Awards represented a great achievement in visibility for members of the LGBT community. The show was hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, the Emmy-nominated star of CBS’ How I Met Your Mother
and an actor who has only seen his profile rise since coming out publicly in 2006. Harris got a big thumbs up on his hosting from encore Emmy winner Jon Stewart. "You're doing a wonderful job," Stewart said. "I'm serious. You're tremendous. And these shows, they usually suck."
Cherry Jones took home the statue for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her role as President Allison Taylor on Fox's 24. In her speech, Jones saluted the artistry and gifts of her co-workers as Keifer Sutherland looked on with obvious pride in his co-star.
The trophy for Outstanding Dramatic Series went to AMC's hit drama Mad Men starring Jon Hamm and Bryan Batt. Batt is a speaker at the upcoming Out in Hollywood III: The Rise of the Out Actor, an invitation-only panel discussion presented by GLAAD’s Entertainment Media Program in conjunction with the SAG National LGBT Actors Committee. At the panel, prominent actors, casting directors, producers and directors will discuss the opportunities and challenges actors face by coming out.
The LGBT community was also well represented behind the scenes. Irish lesbian Dearbhla Walsh earned the Emmy for Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special for Little Dorritt (PBS), based on the work of Charles Dickens. In her speech, Walsh thanked her partner, Irish television presenter Anna Nolan. Kristin Chenoweth won the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her work on the now canceled Pushing Daisies (ABC) produced by the out team of Bruce Cohen and Dan Jinks. Michael Sucsy, the openly gay writer/director/producer of Grey Gardens (HBO) accepted the award for Outstanding Made for TV Movie.
GLAAD celebrates the work of these talented artists and the networks that support them. As people see stories about their lives and the common ground we all share, it leads to greater awareness, understanding and equality.