LGBTQ&A: Evan Wolfson, Native Son and Married Man

An occasional series where we pose some questions to local LGBTQ folks (and Allies) to learn more about their personal experiences with LGBTQ culture. Click here for a complete list of all LGBTQ&A profiles.  During Pride 2013, we are trying to feature someone each day

Photo: GLAAD
Photo: GLAAD

A native son of Pittsburgh, Evan Wolfson is the founder and leader of the national LGBTQ marriage equality group, Freedom to Marry. I had the opportunity to hear him speak when he stopped in Pittsburgh on a book tour in 2004 or 2005. He was very gracious about the unexpected power outage that drove everyone from the Barnes and Noble to the street while event organizer Rick Allison quickly negotiated with the folks at a nearby restaurant. Evan didn’t meet a beat as he picked up with the reading.  Since then, I’ve had some contact with Evan online and with some national projects – but I really appreciate when he remembers his roots – either via a contribution to a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette story or simply making time to RT something from the Pgh region.


Name: Evan Wolfson

Affiliation: Founder & President, Freedom to Marry

Tell us about the very first LGBTQ person you met and what that meant for you. My freshman year of college we had a visiting high school senior come to explore the school. I was not yet out, though I knew I was gay, and was unsure how to handle his more openness and comfort. It helped push me to get my act together.

How do you stay informed on LGBTQ issues? How can you not?

What is the most important issue facing the LGBTQ community today? Securing the freedom to marry, thereby ending government discrimination and spurring the continuing momentum in public acceptance, which, in turn, we most make the lived experience of every gay person both in society and in law.

If you could wave a magic wand and change one thing in Pittsburgh’s LGBTQ community, what would it be? Mobilize and lead a campaign to win the freedom to marry in PA

Past or present, favorite LGBTQ character in television, film or literature? The emperor Hadrian in Yourcenar’s Memoirs of Hadrian

What is one simple thing a reader can do to support the LGBTQ community? Have a conversation with a non-gay person about your life, your dreams, and the ways in which the law still does not treat you equally.

Thank you, Evan.

You can follow Evan on Twitter @EvanWolfson 

And it is on a fitting note that we wrap up the special “Pride Edition” of LGBTQ&A with a leader in the national marriage equality efforts. We’ll take a break from this feature and start up again in July on a semi-frequent basis. As always, you can suggest someone for the feature by emailing pghlesbian at gmail dot com.


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