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Stein Club Affirms Support for ENDA

Washington, DC - October 19, 2007 - The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, the largest LGBT political organization in the District, passed a resolution at the October 15th meeting affirming its support for ENDA. The resolution also included the Stein Club urging Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton to work with her colleagues, as the ENDA legislation moves through the legislative process, to strive for the best possible legislation.

Below is the text of the letter sent to Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton.

Stein Club to Hold Endorsement Meeting for Wards 4 and 7 / School Board

Washington, DC - April 3, 2007 - The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club (Stein Club), the largest LGBT political organization in the District, will hold its Endorsement Meeting for Wards 4 and 7 of the DC Council, and District 2 of the Board of Education (Special Elections) on Monday, April 9, 2007.

"All Democratic candidates in Wards 4 and 7, and all candidates for District 2 of the Board of Education have been invited to participate in the endorsement meeting," said Mario Acosta-Velez, Stein Club President.

The endorsement meeting will be a forum to learn about the candidates' positions on LGBT issues, and to mobilize the LGBT community to participate in the special election.

"We asked the candidates to submit a 250-word statement summarizing their positions on LGBT community and the District in general. We will make these statements available to our membership prior to the meeting," concluded Acosta-Velez.

Stein Club Elects Sheila Alexander-Reid as Female Representative to the Democratic State Committee

Washington, DC - March 13, 2007 - At the March 12th meeting, the Stein Club elected Sheila Alexander-Reid as the female representative to the Democratic State Committee (DSC). The Stein Club currently has two seats on the DSC. Sheila joins Stein Club President Mario Acosta-Velez as the Stein Club representatives to the DSC.

"Sheila is one of the most active members of the Stein Club, serving during the last year in the membership committee. We look forward to Sheila's participation in the DSC and her contributions to enhance the Stein Club presence within the local Democratic Party," said Mario Acosta-Velez, Stein Club President.

Gertrude Stein Democratic Club Resolution on Smoking in the National Democratic Club

Washington, DC – March 13, 2007 – The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, the largest LGBT political organization in the District passed the following resolution at its March 12th meeting:

Gertrude Stein Democratic Club Resolution on Smoking in the National Democratic Club

Whereas the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club endorsed and lobbied for the indoor smokefree workplace law, The Department of Health Functions Clarification Amendment Act of 2006; and

Whereas the law has unanimous support from Democratic members of the D.C. Council and the Mayor; and

Whereas the Democratic Leadership of the House of Representatives has prohibited smoking in the House Speaker’s Lobby; and

Whereas secondhand smoke has been proven to cause lung cancer and heart disease, and has been linked to asthma and respiratory problems. Secondhand smoke has 4,000 chemicals, more than 50 of which are carcinogens; and

Whereas the Surgeon General’s June, 2006 report, The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke, finds that even brief secondhand smoke exposure can cause immediate harm. The report says the only way to protect nonsmokers from the dangerous chemicals in secondhand smoke is to eliminate smoking indoors; and

Whereas the law is intended to safe guard workers from the hazards of secondhand smoke and workers shouldn't have to give up a good job because of secondhand smoke; and

Whereas the National Democratic Club has applied for an exemption to the Department of Health Functions Clarification Amendment Act of 2006 as a tobacco bar; Be it resolved that:

The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club will not sponsor, co-sponsor or send a representative to any indoor venue that permits smoking, including the National Democratic Club; and

DC Democratic State Committee Elects and Adds More Openly Gay Members

Washington, DC – February 6, 2007 - The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club (Stein Club), the largest LGBT political organization in the District, today applauded the DC Democratic State Committee (DSC) for electing openly gay activists as Ex Officio Members, and for continuing its commitment to diversity and the rights of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender residents.

At its February 1st elections meeting, the DSC re-elected openly gay candidate Stephen P. Gorman and elected openly gay activist David Meadows to serve a two-year term as Ex Officio Members. Gorman is the former Chair of the Mayor’s Committee on Persons With Disabilities and a member of the Stein Club, and Meadows is a former President of the Stein Club, one of the largest LGBT Democratic clubs in the nation. Gorman and Meadows also have a history of involvement in local and national Democratic Party politics.

Also joining the DSC are Tom Smith, a long standing political activist and supporter of Food and Friends, as newly elected Chairman of the Ward 3 Democratic Committee, and Desi Deschaine as newly elected DC Young Democrats National Committeeman. Deschaine, a Stein Club member, has become an active voice for both LGBT issues and DC voting rights within the National Young Democrats of America.

The four join the following DSC members (and Stein Club members): Vice Chair Jeffrey Richardson, and Recording Secretary Ron Collins, both elected to these offices this past December, Ward 8 Democrats President, Phillip E. Pannell, Ward 2 Representative Karen Armogost and Ward 8 Representative Bradley Lewis. Stein Club President Mario Acosta-Velez and Darlene Nipper, serve as the Stein Club representatives to the DSC.

Gertrude Stein Democratic Club Elects Officers For Year 2007

Washington, DC - November 21, 2006 - On Monday, November 13th, 2006 the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club (Stein Club) held elections for its Executive Committee at its monthly meeting held at the John A. Wilson District building.

Elected as President is Mr. Mario Acosta-Velez. Mr. Acosta-Velez, a longtime civil rights advocate for the Latino and LGBT communities, currently serves as Vice Chair of the District of Columbia Commission on Human Rights and Chair of the Commission's outreach and education committee. He also serves on the District of Columbia Workforce Investment Council as an Executive Committee member and Chair of the Universal Access Committee, is a current Board Member of the ACLU-National Capital Area, and is an elected board member of the National Stonewall Democrats. Mario served as Stein Club's President in 2006 and previously served as Vice President for Political Affairs and Secretary. Mario is a graduate of the Harvard's 2005 Executives in State and Local Government Program, a member of Leadership Greater Washington, and the recipient of the 2006 Capital Pride Hero Award. A long-term resident of Ward 2, Mario has two master's degrees in Public Administration and in Political Science, and is a diversity and strategic planning consultant.

Elected as Vice President for Political Affairs is Darren A. Bowie. Mr. Bowie is Assistant General Counsel at AOL, where he manages advertising, privacy, and other consumer protection legal matters. Before joining AOL, Darren served in a number of positions at the Federal Trade Commission, including as legal advisor to the FTC Chairman. He prosecuted criminal telemarketing fraud cases as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, and received the FTC's Louis D. Brandeis Outstanding Litigator Award. Darren is Vice Chair of the Consumer Protection Committee of the American Bar Association's Antitrust Section. Darren currently serves as Chair of the Dupont Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commission.

Elected as 2nd Vice President of Administration is Mr. Darrin Glymph. Mr. Glymph is the current Chairman of the District of Columbia Small and Local Business Opportunity Commission and also serves as Vice Chair of the Center for Family and Youth Investment. Darrin is a longtime Democratic Activist and a founding member of the Gay Men of African Decent (GMAD). Darrin is a Municipal Finance Attorney practicing in Washington, DC and owns a home in Ward 4.

Stein Club Congratulates Mayor-elect Fenty and other Winning Endorsed Candidates

Washington, DC - November 8, 2006 - The Gertrude Stein Democratic Club (Stein Club), the largest LGBT political organization in the District, congratulates Mayor-elect Adrian Fenty on his victory in the November 7 general election. Mayor-elect Fenty once again received extraordinary support throughout the city and from the LGBT community.

The Stein Club also congratulates the other winning, endorsed candidates, including Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, Council Chair-elect Vincent Gray, Councilmember Jim Graham, Councilmember Phil Mendelson, Councilmember-elect Harry Thomas, Jr., Councilmember-elect Tommy Wells, Councilmember-elect Mary Cheh, Shadow Senator-elect Michael Brown, Shadow Representative-elect Mike Panetta, School board President-elect Robert Bobb, and School Board member-elect Lisa Raymond.

"We proudly celebrate the election of Councilmember Adrian Fenty as our next Mayor and enthusiastically look forward to supporting and working with his administration to address issues of importance to our diverse LGBT community and to advance our equal rights," said Mario Acosta-Velez, Stein Club President.

"Mayor-elect Fenty has shown a very strong commitment to support the LGBT community and we are excited about the opportunity to participate in the framing, implementation, and evaluation of policies and initiatives that will benefit the overall LGBT community," continued Acosta-Velez.

The Stein Club also looks forward to working with the City Council to promote legislative initiatives that will improve both the quality of life and civil rights for members of the LGBT community.

"The results of our City's elections are good news for our community. All the elected candidates support our community and believe in the importance of LGBT participation in the District's political and public policy process," concluded Acosta-Velez.