Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

Ex-SF Pride ‘Queen’ supports Fiorina

A supporter of Republican Senate hopeful Carly Fiorina with ties to the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage is also known as an ex-Pride “Queen.”

Karyme Lozano, a Mexican soap opera star and musician, performed at the Latin stage at the 2008 San Francisco LGBT Pride celebration, and she appears to have been given royalty status as a promotional gimmick from one of the stage’s organizers.

In a news release for that year’s celebration, Granda Entertainment boasted Lozano, who has “great fans in the San Francisco” would be crowned “Queen of the San Francisco Pride 2008 Parade.”

Lozano, who couldn’t be reached for comment, was to appear at a Tuesday, July 27 event for the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles to announce details of a $1 million campaign in support of Fiorina, the former Hewlett Packard CEO.

The story appears to have been reported first by the Los Angeles Times.

Fiorina, who’s working to oust Senator Barbara Boxer (D-San Francisco) from her long-held seat, opposes marriage equality.

Lozano is on the board of advisors of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles, according to the group’s website. The organization is a project of the American Principles Project.

American Principles’ founder is Robert P. George, who’s also the chairman of the board of the National Organization for Marriage. Maggie Gallagher, NOM’s president, is on the American Principles board.

The marriage organization was a big backer of Prop 8, which California voters passed in 2008, banning same-sex marriages in the state. The group is now working to defeat marriage equality across the country through its “Summer for Marriage Tour.” (The California-based Courage Campaign has been tracking that tour.)

— Seth Hemmelgarn, July 30, 2010 @ 3:45 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

Gay supportive Castro Church votes to rejoin national Lutheran body

A Lutheran church in the city’s Castro district that spent 15 years in exile for opposing a ban against non-celibate LGBT pastors voted this weekend to rejoin the national church.

In 1990 St. Francis Lutheran Church, a congregation on Church Street, ordained a lesbian couple, Ruth Frost and Phyllis Zillhart, as associate pastors in defiance of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s ban on pastors in same-sex relationships. The national church in 1995 then removed the local parish from its roster as punishment.

Last year the ELCA reversed itself and ended the ban on non-celibate LGBT pastors. In April the Sierra-Pacific Synod, the regional organization of the ELCA for Northern California and Northern Nevada, invited St. Francis  back into the fold.

This past Sunday, July 25 the 129-member St. Francis congregation voted overwhelmingly to rejoin the national church.

“The process of healing from the pain of being removed from the ELCA will take time. However, we all rejoice that the church is now welcoming sexual minority people, and we embrace our future as a member of the larger church with faith and hope,” stated Congregation President Brandee Marckmann in a release following the vote.

The regional body also invited back another San Francisco congregation, First United Lutheran Church, that had also been removed after it ordained a gay man, Jeff Johnson, as an associated pastor the same day St. Francis installed the lesbian pastors. That church has yet to schedule a vote on whether to return to the ELCA.

The decision by St. Francis came just hours before a ceremony at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in San Francisco at which seven LGBT pastors, including Johnson, were welcomed back to the ELCA’s clergy roster as full-fledged reverends in the church.

At a special worship service tentatively scheduled for Sunday, November 7, the congregation of St. Francis will welcome Bishop Mark Holmerud of the Sierra-Pacific Synod and celebrate its reunion with the ELCA.

— Matthew S. Bajko, July 26, 2010 @ 1:01 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

Staff changes at SF AIDS Foundation made to fit goals

The San Francisco AIDS Foundation has been going through some staff changes related to its efforts to reduce HIV infections.

James Loduca, the vice president of marketing and communications for the foundation, said that last August, the agency introduced a five-year strategic plan with three goals: cutting known infections in San Francisco in half, ensuring all San Franciscans know their HIV status, and ensuring access to proper HIV care for all who need it.

“In this budget cycle, we evaluated what our needs are over the longer term for executing the strategic plan, and then made staff changes to allow the organization to be successful over the next five years in realizing our goals,” said Loduca.

Loduca said the agency eliminated three positions in June, at the end of the fiscal year.

Those cut were Marty Low, the chief financial officer; Keith Hocking, the senior director of programs and services; and Debra Holtz, the media relations manager.

The CFO’s duties are now being fulfilled by Chris Damon, who’s become the CFO/controller for the foundation.

“At the end of every fiscal year in the budget process, we evaluate what knowledge, skills, and abilities we currently have, and what we’re going to need to execute our strategic plan to radically reduce new infections and insure access to care,” said Loduca.

The for the 2010-11 fiscal year is $21,500,888. Loduca said there haven’t been any budget changes or financial troubles.

One example of how they’re trying to meet their goals will be seen at Magnet, the foundation-run testing center in the Castro.

Magnet is projected to deliver 7,000 HIV tests this year, twice as much as they’ve done before.

“We added another day of testing,” said Loduca. “We used to be open five days a week. Now we’re going to six days.”

He wasn’t immediately able to say which day they’d be closed, and Magnet’s website hadn’t been updated as of today [Friday, July 22].

Loduca said he didn’t know whether the changes would include more staff for Magnet.

The foundation has 93 staff, which includes seven open positions. Some of those positions are already listed on the foundation’s website, and more are on the way.

One of those includes a communications manager, a position that includes all aspects of agency communications.

Loduca said the search for a new executive director is going well, but it’s too soon to say when someone will be hired.

Barbara Kimport has been serving as the foundation’s interim CEO since former CEO Mark Cloutier resigned in February.

On Sunday, July 18, over 25,000 people raised more than $3 million for the HIV prevention and care services of San Francisco AIDS Foundation and 59 Bay Area AIDS Organizations throughout the Bay Area at the annual AIDS Walk.

For more information about the foundation, visit the foundation’s website.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, July 22, 2010 @ 5:08 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

August hearing set for new CA chief justice

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s pick to be the state’s next chief justice will go before a judicial review panel next month.

The Commission on Judicial Appointments will hold a public meeting at 11 a.m. Wednesday, August 25 in the California Supreme Court Courtroom, Fourth Floor, 350 McAllister Street, San Francisco, to consider the nomination of Justice Tani Gorre Cantil-Sakauye as Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court.

Last week Chief Justice Ronald George shocked legal circles with his announcement that he would not seek another term on the bench this fall and instead retire to spend more time with his family.

Rather than elevate a current member of the bench to the post, Schwarzenegger opted instead to bring aboard a new justice to oversee the seven-member bench at the Supreme Court.

George’s term will officially expire January 2, 2011. Should she be approved for the chief justice post, Cantil-Sakauye will earn $238,010.

Since 2005, Cantil-Sakauye has served as an associate justice for the Third District Court of Appeal in Sacramento. She is a member of the California Judicial Council and is vice chair of the Rules and Projects Committee and Judicial Recruitment and Retention Working Group.

She is also a member of the Commission on Impartial Courts, chair of the Judicial Branch Financial Accountability and Efficiency Advisory Committee and president of the Anthony M. Kennedy Inn of Court.

A deputy district attorney for the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office from 1984 to 1988, she then joined the administration of GOP Governor George Deukmejian.

In 1990 she became a a municipal court judge for the Sacramento County Municipal Court; and in 1997 she became a superior court judge for the Sacramento County Superior Court.

LGBT advocates have yet to voice any misgivings about Cantil-Sakauye or her judicial record. She is seen as a moderate pick.

The commissioners  who will vote on her next month include the chief justice, who chairs the panel;  Attorney General Edmund G. Brown, Jr.; and Presiding Justice Joan Dempsey Klein, Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Three (Los Angeles), senior presiding justice of the state Courts of Appeal.

If the nomination is confirmed, Cantil-Sakauye’s name will be placed on the November 2010 ballot for election by the voters.

Anyone wishing to testify before the commission next month must send in a written request to speak and indicate if they will be testifying in support or opposition to the nominee. They also must provide the panel a summary of the proposed testimony, the facts upon which it is based, and its relevance to the nominee’s qualifications.

All requests must be received by the commission by 5 p.m. Wednesday, August 18.  The commission’s address is:
Commission on Judicial Appointments
c/o Chief Justice of California
Supreme Court of California
350 McAllister Street
San Francisco, California 94102
Attention: Secretary to the Commission

— Matthew S. Bajko, @ 4:38 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

AG report: Anti-gay hate crimes down in 2009

Anti-gay hate crimes in 2009 were down 22.1 percent from 2008, according to a report from state Attorney General Jerry Brown (pictured at left) released today [Thursday, July 22].

There were 154 anti-gay hate crimes in 2008, and 120 in 2009, according to the report, which doesn’t break the numbers down by county.

In 2009, hate crimes with a sexual orientation bias motivation were the second most common type of hate crime, comprising 22.3 percent of hate crimes, the report says. Within the sexual orientation category, crimes with an anti-gay motivation continue to be the most common, accounting for at least 9 percent of all hate crimes since 2000.

Hate crimes with a race/ethnicity/national origin bias are consistently the most common type of hate crime since 2000, accounting for nearly 60 percent of all hate crimes, according to the report. There, anti-black crimes remain the most common, accounting for at least 26 percent of all hate crimes since 2000.

The full report – “Hate Crime Report 2009″ – is available here.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, @ 12:54 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

CA Supreme Court Chief Justice George to retire

California Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald M. George, who wrote the court’s majority opinion striking down the Golden State’s anti-gay marriage statutes in 2008, announced today (Wednesday, July 14) that he will not seek re-election to the bench this fall.

George will instead conclude his current term of office as the chief justice on the seven-person court come January 2, 2011, after 38 years of service on state courts. The state’s 27th chief justice, the Republican-nominated George spent 14 years in the position having been elevated to the court’s top post by GOP Governor Pete Wilson in 1996.

“It is now time for someone else to assume those responsibilities and, as I have done, to build upon the work of his or her predecessors,” stated George, who turned 70 this year.

The late GOP Governor Ronald Reagan appointed George to the Los Angeles Municipal Court in 1972; five years later Democratic Governor Edmund G.  Brown, Jr., named him to a seat on the Los Angeles Superior Court. GOP Governor George Deukmejian then appointed George to the Court of Appeal in 1987, and Wilson tapped him for an associate justice seat on the Supreme Court in 1991.

As the state’s top court’s chief justice George oversaw several advancements in LGBT rights. In addition to his court’s ruling two years ago that the state had no valid reason to restrict marriage rights to heterosexual couples, George’s court also upheld parental rights for LGBT people when it heard three cases involving lesbian mothers.

In another closely watched case, the George court ruled unanimously in 2006 that Berkeley could restrict access to its public facilities from groups that do not abide by its nondiscrimination policies. The case involved a local chapter of the Sea Scouts, a maritime affiliate of the Boy Scouts of America, which prohibits openly gay people from serving as scout leaders.

But his court also struck a blow to the LGBT community’s fight for marriage equality when it ruled in 2009 that voters had the right to strike down the court’s pro-same-sex marriage ruling the year prior by passing Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment that restricted marriage in California to solely between a man and a woman.

The ruling did however uphold as valid the 18,000 marriages performed prior to Prop 8’s passage in November of 2008.

“Heading California’s judicial branch and its efforts to carry out our mission of providing fair and accessible justice to all Californians has been a particularly rewarding experience during these times of great challenge, opportunity, and reform,” stated George. “My gratitude extends literally to thousands of persons — judges, court executives, lawyers and others — for their service on the Judicial Council, on its many advisory committees and task forces, and in the Administrative Office of the Courts, in strengthening the quality, independence, and accountability of our judiciary as a co-equal, separate branch of government.”

Under California’s judicial system, George was to have sought re-election to another 12-year term as chief justice on the November General Election ballot in what is known as a retention race. George, however, determined it was time to retire.

“Reflection convinced me now is the right time — while I am at the top of my game — to leave while the proverbial music still plays, and return to private life,” stated George, adding that “the prospect of leisure time devoted to family, reading, and travel is irresistible at this point in my life.  Seventy years is not an age too old for a person to occupy the office I hold; at the same time, it is young enough to enable me to pursue the richness of a life outside the law that I relish having before me.”

In his statement he released today, he thanked the four governors who appointed him to his judicial posts and said that it is “with enormous gratitude for the privilege and opportunity to serve the people of California that I shall conclude my time in public office.”

According to the rules laid out in the California Constitution, GOP Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has until  September 16 to nominate George’s successor as Chief Justice.

— Matthew S. Bajko, July 14, 2010 @ 1:44 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

SF porn expo welcomes jobseekers

For those who love porn and have experience in developing websites, the 13th Annual CyberNet Expo is the place to be.

Photo: Treasure Island Media

The tradeshow, which starts today [Thursday, July 8] and runs through Saturday, July 10 at San Francisco’s Golden Gateway Holiday Inn, offers hiring opportunities for web developers, designers, programmers, writers, and – of course – models.

Exhibitors such as man-on-man favorite Treasure Island Media and BDSM-inclusive Stockroom want to meet with web professionals interested in job opportunities.

Attendees who bring their resume will receive a 20-percent discount on admission.

On-site reservations are still being accepted, according the the show’s website.

The Golden Gateway Holiday Inn is at 1500 Van Ness Ave. The phone number is (415) 441-4000.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, July 8, 2010 @ 2:43 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

White House to release national AIDS strategy Tuesday

The White House announced today that the Obama administration’s long-awaited national HIV/AIDS strategy will be unveiled Tuesday, July 13.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (pictured at right) will join other top administration officials in the announcement, according to a news release sent by the White House. Also expected to be on hand are Melody Barnes, domestic policy adviser; Jeffrey Crowley, national AIDS policy director; and Dr. Howard Koh, HHS assistant secretary for health.

The White House press release said that the national HIV/AIDS strategy, or NHAS, is a comprehensive plan focused on 1) reducing the number of people who become infected with HIV, 2) increasing access to care and optimizing health outcomes for people living with HIV, and 3) reducing HIV-related health disparities.

Next week’s release of the AIDS strategy comes just ahead of the 18th International AIDS Conference in Vienna, Austria, which begins July 18. The Bay Area Reporter will have coverage of the NHAS release in its July 15 issue.

— Cynthia Laird, @ 2:08 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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