150 Reasons to Have Pride in 2010

BY Advocate Contributors

May 10 2010 5:00 AM ET

STEPHEN COLBERT X390 (GRAB) | ADVOCATE.COM BECAUSE SHE IS THE BEST PERSON FOR THE JOB
Winnie Stachelberg specializes in a sort of modest, self-deprecating humor that belies her relative influence. As senior vice president for external communications at the Center for American Progress—the Washington think tank that spearheaded the Obama transition team—she was privy to the very behind-the-scenes conversations that ultimately shaped the administration. “But that’s not unusual for those like me who are…” she pauses, summoning the word, “experienced, I guess, is a nicer way of saying old.” Old may be a stretch; experienced is not. The 45-year-old New York native has spent the better part of her past 25 years in D.C. after attending Georgetown University. She worked in the Office of Management and Budget before spending nearly 12 years at the Human Rights Campaign. The varied roles are an advantage in her eyes. “It’s really important to have a broader context into which to put these issues,” she says, “so that when you’re going to talk with the Pentagon or the administration about ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ you have a fuller comprehension of what’s happening.” Stachelberg has attended her share of meetings between LGBT advocates and White House officials and admits she’s sometimes frustrated by the slow pace of advancement. But she remains optimistic: “We’ve built a mutual trust and respect that I believe creates a foundation on which we can build more progress over the next several years.”

BECAUSE THE CAR COMPANY WE LOVE IS DOING WELL
One auto manufacturer that didn’t see a drop in sales last year but rather a 10% increase was Subaru, which perhaps not so coincidentally has courted the gay and lesbian market in ads and promotions for nearly 20 years.

BECAUSE JOAN RIVERS IS STILL TALKING
“I’ve always had a special relationship with the gays. It started with my first college boyfriend, and since then I gravitate toward them like Amy Winehouse to a crack pipe.” —Joan Rivers. Her new documentary, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work (in theaters June 11), ­reveals the humanity behind the mask she wears on the red carpet.






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