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Former mayor of
Tempe, Ariz., to head GLAAD

Former mayor of
Tempe, Ariz., to head GLAAD

Neil_giuliano

Neil G. Giuliano, a former four-term mayor of Tempe, Ariz., was named president of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation on Wednesday. He succeeds Joan Garry, who stepped down from GLAAD in June after leading the group for eight years.

Neil G. Giuliano, a former four-term mayor of Tempe, Ariz., was named president of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation on Wednesday. The 48-year-old Giuliano, who will start on September 1, succeeds Joan Garry, who stepped down from GLAAD in June after leading the group for eight years. "During such a critical time for the LGBT community, I am honored and excited to lead one of our movement's most vital and respected organizations," Giuliano said in a statement.

Tempe was the largest city in America with an openly gay mayor during Giuliano's tenure, from 1996 to 2003. A progressive Republican, Giuliano was endorsed by the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund in each of his last three campaigns. After winning his fourth term he beat a recall effort spearheaded by antigay political organizers.

Giuliano spent 25 years at Arizona State University, where he served as director for federal government relations, director for community relations, and, most recently, as the cochair of the final 2004 presidential debate, held at ASU. "At a time when so much is at stake for LGBT people, it is important to have a leader with the broad vision and breadth of experience that Neil Giuliano brings to the table," said Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights and a member of GLAAD's search committee. "As someone who works closely with GLAAD, I am elated by his appointment. Neil's background in public office and deep understanding of LGBT issues in our culture will be invaluable to GLAAD as it continues to work with the media to serve our diverse LGBT community and reach the entire nation."

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