Author: R. Richard Wagner
Summary: Coming Out, Moving Forward, the second volume in R. Richard Wagner’s groundbreaking work on gay history in Wisconsin, outlines the challenges that LGBT Wisconsinites faced in their efforts to right past oppressions and secure equality in the post-Stonewall period between 1969 and 2000. During this era, Wisconsin made history as the first state to enact a gay rights law prohibiting discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation. It also became the first state to elect three openly gay/lesbian persons to Congress.
In this volume, R. Richard Wagner draws on historical research and materials from his extensive personal archive to not only chronicle an important movement, but also to tell the stories of the state’s LGBT pioneers—from legislators and elected officials to activists, businesspeople, and everyday citizens. Coming Out, Moving Forward documents the rich history of Wisconsin’s LGBT individuals and communities as they pushed back against injustice and found ways to live openly and proudly as themselves.
Coming Out, Moving Forward is a continuation to the first volume in this series, We’ve Been Here All Along.
About the Author: Scholar and activist R. Richard Wagner was the first openly gay member of the Dane County Board of Supervisors, where he served for fourteen years. In 1983, he co-chaired the Wisconsin Governor’s Council on Lesbian and Gay Issues—the first such council in the nation. And in 2005, he joined the board of Fair Wisconsin to fight the constitutional amendment against marriage equality.