A Decade of Justice: Defending Equality 2010-2020

Lambda Legal is the largest legal

organization in the United States fighting for full equality for LGBTQ people

and everyone living with HIV. This has been our sole purpose since our founding

in 1973. And while the specific battles in our overarching march towards

justice have varied over the years, we have stayed true to this mission. We

made no exception in the twenty-teens, and indeed, this was an incredibly

momentous decade in advances won for civil rights.

As we approach the end of this decade, here

are some of Lambda Legal’s greatest hits.

2010: Langbehn v. Jackson Memorial HospitalAcknowledgement of Same-Sex

Families in Medical Settings

Although a federal district court rejected Lambda

Legal’s lawsuit, ruling that no law required the hospital to allow her and

their three children to see her dying partner, Janice Langbehn and Lambda Legal

continued to work with other LGBTQ organizations and officials at Jackson

Memorial Hospital to change hospital policies on visitation and respecting the

wishes of same-sex couples and their families.

Because of her work, President Obama called

Janice Langbehn personally to apologize and as a result announced his plan to

ensure LGBTQ patients and their families are respected in hospital visitation


2011: Glenn v. Brumby: Employment Rights for

Transgender People

In 2007, Vandy Beth Glenn informed her boss

at the Georgia General Assembly’s Office of Legislative Counsel that she

planned to proceed with gender transition. Her boss fired her on the spot.

We filed a federal lawsuit, and ultimately,

the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling that the Georgia General

Assembly discriminated against Vandy Beth Glenn in firing her. This remains a

cornerstone federal ruling to date supporting the rights of transgender


2012: Couch v. Wayne Local School District: Students’ Rights to Free


In April 2011, Maverick Couch, a high school

student in Waynesville, Ohio, wore a T-shirt with a rainbow Ichthys, or “sign

of the fish,” paired with the slogan “Jesus Is Not a Homophobe” in observation

of GLSEN's National Day of Silence and the school principal threatened him with

suspension. We filed a lawsuit on Maverick’s behalf and the school conceded in

one day. Our victory affirmed students’ rights to free speech.

2013: Hollingsworth v. Perry: Marriage Equality in


Lambda Legal acted as amici and assisted with

trial preparation in a case contesting Proposition 8, which halted same-sex

marriages in California. The Supreme Court ruled that proponents of Prop 8 had

no right to appeal the district court’s ruling blocking the law and restored

the freedom to marry in California.

2014: Rhoades v. Iowa: Fighting HIV


Lambda Legal represented Nick Rhoades, a man

living with HIV who was sentenced to 25 years in prison and made to register as

a sex offender after a one-time sexual encounter in which he used a condom. The

Iowa Supreme Court reversed his conviction, recognizing that the scientific

understanding of HIV transmission is evolving and HIV-positive individuals who

have a suppressed viral load as a result of effective treatment may pose little

risk of transmitting the virus.

2015: Obergefell v. Hodges: Marriage Equality


#LoveWins! In a historic decision that

included Lambda Legal’s case Henry v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court declared

that denying same-sex couples the freedom to marry violates the U.S.

Constitution. This decision invalidated all state statutes and constitutional

amendments barring same-sex couples from marriage.

2016: Brook S.B. v. Elizabeth C.C.: Non-biological

Parents’ Rights to their Children

Brook and Elizabeth were together for seven

years, and they planned for and had a son together. When Elizabeth cut off

contact abruptly in 2013, Brook filed for custody and visitation. The case made

its way up to the highest court in New York State, who ultimately issued a

groundbreaking ruling, finding that non-biological parents have the right to

seek custody and visitation.

2017: Hively v. Ivy Tech: Employment Rights for

LGB People

In August of 2014, Kimberly Hively sued Ivy

Tech Community College, arguing that the school violated Title VII of the Civil

Rights Act of 1964 when she was fired after being seen kissing her

then-girlfriend in the parking lot of the school. In a groundbreaking 8-3

decision, the full Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that workplace

discrimination based on sexual orientation violates federal civil rights law.

2018: Passion Star a/k/a Zollicoffer v. Livingston: Rights for

Incarcerated Transgender People

Passion Star is a Black transgender woman who

was incarcerated in male facilities. We represented her in filing a lawsuit

alleging prison officials failed to protect her from sexual and physical abuse.

In 2018, we secured a favorable settlement

for Passion Star, sending a strong message to prison officials that sexual

assault and violence against LGBTQ people who are incarcerated will not be

swept under the rug.

2019: Gore v. Lee: Fighting for Transgender Rights

This year, we filed a lawsuit in Tennessee,

making it the fifth jurisdiction in which we have challenged an existing

categorical exclusion preventing transgender people from correcting their birth


Accurate identity documents are extremely

important. According to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, almost one-third of

transgender individuals who showed an identity document with a name or gender

marker that conflicted with their perceived gender were harassed, denied

benefits or services, discriminated against, or assaulted.

This filing builds on our victories in Puerto RicoIdaho, and Kansas where we secured victories in court that prompted

necessary policy changes.

WhistlePig + Alfa Romeo F1

SHOREHAM, VT (September 13, 2023) — WhistlePig Whiskey, the leaders in independent craft whiskey, and Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake are waving the checkered flag on a legend-worthy release that’s taking whiskey to G-Force levels. The Limited Edition PiggyBack Legends Series: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is a high Rye Whiskey selected by the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake drivers, with barrels trialed in their wind tunnel to ensure a thrilling taste in every sip.

The third iteration in WhistlePig’s Single Barrel PiggyBack Legends Series, the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is bottled at 96.77 proof, a nod to Valtteri Bottas’ racing number, 77, and the precision of racing. Inspired by Zhou Guanyu, the first Chinese F1 driver, this Rye Whiskey is finished with lychee and oolong tea. Herbal and floral notes of the oolong tea complement the herbaceous notes of WhistlePig’s signature PiggyBack 100% Rye, rounded out with a juicy tropical fruit finish and a touch of spice.

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by Spectrum Medical Care Center

Nurse Practitioner Ari Kravitz

When I started medical transition at 20 years old, it was very difficult to get the care I needed for hormone replacement therapy because there are very few providers trained in starting hormones for trans people, even though it’s very similar to the hormones that we prescribe to women in menopause or cisgender men with low testosterone.

I hope more providers get trained in LGBTQ+ healthcare, so they can support patients along their individual gender journey, and provide the info needed to make informed decisions about their body. I’ve personally seen my trans patients find hope and experience a better quality of life through hormone replacement therapy.

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Descanso Resort swimming pool and lounge area

Descanso Resort, Palm Springs' premier destination for gay men, just received Tripadvisor's highest honor, a Travelers' Choice "Best of the Best" award for 2023. Based on guests' reviews and ratings, fewer than 1% of Tripadvisor's 8 million listings around the world receive the coveted "Best of the Best" designation. Descanso ranked 12th in the top 25 small inns and hotels category in the United States. Quite an accomplishment!

Open less than two years, Descanso Resort offers gay men a relaxing and luxurious boutique hotel experience just minutes away from Palm Springs' buzziest restaurants, nightclubs, and shopping. Descanso has quickly established itself as a top destination for sophisticated gay travelers, earning hundreds of 5-star guest reviews and consistently ranking in Trapadvisor's top positions alongside brother properties Santiago Resort and Twin Palms Resort.

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