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Marching Onward

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During this Pride month, many of us have celebrated our vision for equality, and our progress toward that vision, in the communities in which we live. This weekend, no matter our hometown or city of residence, we've joined in New York's celebration of marriage equality.

This is truly an historic time.

Earlier today, I had the privilege of marching in New York City's Pride March. Hundreds of thousands of LGBT families and allies were there to celebrate and cheer. Walking alongside my fellow staff and supporters of GLAAD, I could not be any more proud to be part of our movement and part of this organization.

In New York, our staff and many partner organizations have been working around the clock in recent days to make sure media bring stories about the couples at the heart of marriage equality to all Americans. Whether it's African American pastors who support equality in the New York Daily News or Sarah Ellis and Kristen Henderson, whose story was shared across the Associated Press in outlets like the Atlanta Journal Constitution, we need these powerful stories of allies and loving and committed couples in every state if our community is to continue to move forward. At GLAAD, we're committed to doing our part to ensure that happens.

Within every movement and within every organization, comes change. This week, GLAAD's Board of Directors announced some of our own--the resignation of GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios. Jarrett leaves the organization after a series of historic successes that have moved our community closer to equality and sent powerful messages to millions. As GLAAD's Acting President, I want you to know that our staff and Board of Directors are committed to and focused on GLAAD's culture-changing work during our transition into new leadership.

GLAAD recently expanded its on-the-ground work to more states than ever. Media Field Strategists assist local LGBT organizations by training LGBT people and allies how to speak out and build support for equality in states including Alaska, California, Florida, Maryland, Minnesota, and Oregon. GLAAD's work on the ground and behind-the-scenes is needed today more than ever. Our strong track record and ability to move our culture is unwavering.

Americans need to hear more LGBT voices and stories, and we need your help to continue.

I write to you today to ask for your continued engagement in our work--whether it means participating in GLAAD's calls to action against anti-LGBT defamation, volunteering with us, providing financial support to the organization or speaking out in your local offices, homes and communities for full equality. As we saw this weekend in New York, it's the stories of LGBT people, families and our allies that will lead to full equality.

I also want to assure you, our supporters, that we are committed to our transparency policy and that we will continue to make decisions based on what we believe is best for our community, even when it might involve demanding action or disagreeing with our corporate partners.

Thank you for your support of and dedication to GLAAD and its important work. If you have any questions about our recent transitions, let us know. It's important we maintain your confidence. We have a mind to make a difference in this movement, and together, we'll do just that. Be sure to stay involved in our progress at www.glaad.org/blog, www.facebook.com/glaad, and www.twitter.com/glaad.

NYC Pride March 2011

Mike Thompson (center) at the LGBT Pride March in NYC