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Volume 35
Issue 05
 
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Botzer receives Task Force honor
Botzer receives Task Force honor
"When Marsha gets mad, she focuses like a laser," said Task Force Board Co-Chair Alan Acosta. by Robert Raketty - SGN Staff Writer

Marsha Botzer, a longtime activist for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender civil rights, was honored on Saturday, January 27, at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force's Leadership Award event at the Grand Hyatt in Seattle. The sold-out room featured a cocktail reception and dinner.

During the cocktail reception, Task Force Board Member Jody Laine called out the more than a dozen groups Botzer had been a part of over the last two decades. At the national level, Botzer had been the co-chair of the Task Force's board of directors. Here in Washington State, she serves on the boards of the Pride Foundation and the Safe Schools Coalition and as a member of the Washington State Department of Social and Heath Services' Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Advisory Committee.

In 1977, she founded Ingersoll Gender Center. Later, she was also a founding board member of the Seattle LGBT Community Center and Equal Rights Washington.

In the past, Botzer had served on the board of several well respected LGBT and allied groups, including Lambert House, Seattle Counseling Service and Equality Washington. She had also been appointed to terms on the Seattle Commission for Sexual Minorities and Seattle Women's Commission.

In 2003, Botzer received the Greater Seattle Business Association's Community Service and Leadership Award and the Human Rights Campaign's Equality Award. In 2004, she received the Virginia Prince Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Federation for Gender Education, the Horace Mann "Victories for Humanity" Award from Antioch University and was selected to be the Grand Marshall for the Seattle Pride Parade.

Josh Friedes, advocacy director of Equal Rights Washington; Louise Chernin, executive director of the Greater Seattle Business Association; Bill Dubay, a noted LGBT civil rights activist and representative of DontAmend.com; and Matt Foreman, executive director of the Task Force, honored Botzer in their remarks.

"When Marsha gets mad, she focuses like a laser; turning that anger into constructive political work, working with allies in an effort to make our country a place that truly is bound in the principle of equal rights for all," said Task Force Board Co-Chair Alan Acosta.

Botzer was humbled by the award, thanking the many people in their room for their efforts. "Thank you. You are my expatriates. My friends. My allies," she said. "Together, if we are willing to take the chances and take the steps, we will be able to create a future where someday people will sit in peace. Free of the blind power of heterosexism, homophobia, transphobia, racism, and class. ... Free to become who we truly are and free to choose the ones we love; marring the one we love... "

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