We're always glad when anyone comes out, although it's particularly noteworthy when well-known people do. They provide role models for young LGBT people and drive home the message that we are everywhere, while usually enhancing their own lives in the process — living openly and honestly is good for the soul.
We're looking back at some famous folks who’ve come out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, pansexual, or fluid this year. Of course, you don’t have to be famous for your coming-out to make an impact. When people know someone who is LGBT, they’re far more likely to support our rights. “Every person who speaks up changes more hearts and minds, and creates new advocates for equality,” notes the Human Rights Campaign, which offers coming-out resources here.
Click through to see the variety of people who’ve come out this year — actors, athletes, musicians, clergy members, politicians, and more.