Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 29+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2015-03-25
Download Issue
  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Knight at the Movies: Spring LGBT movie preview Knight at the Movies: Spring LGBT
movie preview
In spring this middle-aged gay man's fancy turns to—what else?—movies. Looking over ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times    Download PDF Issue

GLSEN executive to speak at Elmhurst College
by Ross Forman, Windy City Times
2013-10-09

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Eliza Byard will be at Elmhurst College on Wednesday, Oct. 23, for a talk entitled, The LGBT Student and the Culture of Respect, which is this year's William R. Johnson Intercultural Lecture at the west suburban school.

It certainly, too, will be a flashback for Byard.

Years ago as a graduate student, Byard was an adjunct teacher for undergraduate students at Barnard College and Columbia University, in history and American studies. That brief teaching gig ended in the 1990s.

"It's an amazing thing," Byard said, laughing. "When I taught years ago, they had to listen to me. Now they've asked to listen to me. That's a very nice difference."

Byard is now the executive director of the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network ( GLSEN ), a leader in the education, youth development and civil rights sectors fighting to end bias-based bullying, violence and discrimination in K-12 schools and promote a culture of respect for all.

The annual William R. Johnson Intercultural Lecture is named in honor of Elmhurst College alumnus Reverend Dr. William R. Johnson ( Class of 1968 ), who was openly gay, and one of the first in modern history to gain ordination to the mainstream Christian ministry.

Elmhurst College is a private liberal arts college, affiliated with the United Church of Christ. It also, in 2011, added a question about prospective students' sexual orientation and gender identity in its admission application.

"[On]-campus speaking engagements are particularly interesting because every campus has a very distinct personality. I love visiting with communities in the way that you do when you speak at a school," Byard said. "I often find that the Q&A session can raise issues that become fodder for future work.

"When I'm talking to faculties or schools, I'm always on the lookout for what's the next topic for concern or the next issues/topics, especially those that we haven't yet taken on at GLSEN.

"This particular speaking engagement seemed really interesting because it's about the dynamics of intercultural life, and then placing that within the world."

Byard's speech starts at 4 p.m., in the Frick Center of Founders Lounge ( 190 Prospect Ave. ). Admission is $10 for the general public and free for Elmhurst College students, faculty, staff and alumni. Tickets are available at www.elmhurst.edu/tix.

The college approached GLSEN in hopes she would speak at the event, Byard said, and she's "honored and pleased" to do so.

"From what I know about Elmhurst College, it is a place that has always fostered interesting dialogue; I'm really looking forward to being a part of that series," she said. "[Elmhurst College] does a great deal to foster real dialogue around issues of cultural difference and community, in a way that is very productive.

"Personally, I particularly enjoy presentations to a college audience, which is so wide-ranging. The thing I particularly love is, the kinds of questions that come up; I always look forward to that aspect of these talks and presentations."

Byard has spent 13 years at GLSEN, first joining as deputy executive director. She lives in New York City with her partner and their two children.

"One of the things that has been a real focus during my time at GLSEN is about putting the LGBT experience in context, in terms of why these issues matter, not just for the individual who is directly affected, but for the community around them," Byard said. "My interest is in drawing some connections for an audience about some of the successes that we have had and why I think we've had them.

"When I was teaching in the 1990s, the exploration of LGBT issues and themes, in the college context, was in its infancy. It was then called lesbian and gay studies, then queer studies. But it was not part of the everyday undergraduate college existence. Things started to happen through the 1990s that indicted that people were beginning to understand why this mattered, and why this understanding was so important. Now, to be going to Elmhurst College, in this context, is one of the examples of where we've come; people understand this as a key part of the dialogue.

"I can't wait to see what questions they bring to the conversation."

Byard added: "A lot of my time at GLSEN, particularly my earlier years, was about fostering common ground and really working with people who we had very fundamental disagreements [with] in order to find a way forward. Going to a place like Elmhurst feels like a slightly different experience, but certainly increases my sense of community, and what it means to talk to this community."

Byard said the fact that Elmhurst College asks prospective students' sexual orientation and gender identity in its admission application can make "an enormous difference, whether it's [to and for] the person who checks the box, or the person who just notices that it's there and understands this to be a place that recognizes and respects that category."

Thus, forward-thinking schools such as Elmhurst College should be celebrated, she said.

Byard spoke this past August in Washington D.C., in conjunction with the commemorative 50th anniversary March on Washington. GLSEN partner organizations, mostly in the South, nominated Byard to speak at the event, and the King Center selected her.

She said it was "the experience of a lifetime."

GLSEN was the lone LGBT organization represented at the event.

"When I got the invitation [to speak at the event], I didn't think it was real. But it was, and it really was an occasion like none other," she said. "To stand on the steps where Bayard Rustin stood, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., stood, where all of those incredible pioneers and path-breakers stood, and to honor what they did … to be a part of that was just amazing. It meant a lot to me to particularly call out the names of LGBT youth that we have lost as inspirations to keep going, and to re-dedicate ourselves to the struggle for real equality for everyone.

"It was an unforgettable experience, though I also refer to it as the scariest two minutes of my life. It was the most humbling experience of my life, humbling in a good way, one that left me happier than I was before.

"Plus, it was the first time my work has interfered with a family vacation—and yet my partner completely understood."


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Widespread condemnations of Indiana bill, Emanuel and Garcia respond 2015-03-30
Protesters decry religious-freedom law in Indianapolis 2015-03-28
Veterans speak on love and secrets in military 2015-03-27
HRC: Senate under Reid changed the lives of LGBT Americans 2015-03-27
Barney Frank at Center on Halsted for book promo 2015-03-26
Ald. Emma Mitts videotaped making anti-LGBT comments 2015-03-25
Thousand Waves marks 30 years of mission-driven work 2015-03-25
National roundup: Kosilek appeal; GetEQUAL's bill of rights 2015-03-24
Chicago-made Huntington's doc 'Quicksand' screens April 9 2015-03-23
DOWS hosts women's dance 2015-03-23
Senator Delgado: Meeks votes came from "loyalty" 2015-03-21
Gov. Rauner makes commitment to LGBT Illinoisans 2015-03-20
Lambda urges Indiana House to reject discrimination Bill SB 101 2015-03-20
Rivendell Theatre honors Willa Taylor, marks 20 years 2015-03-19
State Senate confirms Meeks as Education Chair 2015-03-19
Creating Change coming to Chicago, local team launching 2015-03-18
Anti-conversion therapy bill passes out of committee 2015-03-18
Chicago LGBT-rights advocate now with Human Rights Watch 2015-03-18
ELECTIONS 2015: 46TH WARD Crawford aims to unseat Cappleman in runoff 2015-03-18
VIEWS Discrimination is not religious freedom 2015-03-18
ELECTION 2015: Early voting info for runoffs 2015-03-18
Upcoming: Willa Taylor honors; GayCo event; Sculpture exhibit 2015-03-18
MUSIC Anne Steele shows listeners 'What's Mine' 2015-03-18
National: Philly's celebration; guilty verdict; Utah bill 2015-03-17
Crossroads Fund holds annual gala 2015-03-17
World: Lesbian tennis player; restroom situation; IKEA website 2015-03-17
Activists urge senate to vote "No" on Meeks appointment 2015-03-17
Schock resigns after new allegations arise 2015-03-17
Longtime political activist Jean Hardisty dies 2015-03-16
Barney Frank event at Center on March 25, program change 2015-03-16
New-look Chicago Force eyes return to national championship form 2015-03-14
Election board decides in favor of Mell 2015-03-12
Equality Illinois endorses Emanuel in runoff election 2015-03-12
Illinois youth leaders lobby on conversion therapy ban 2015-03-12
Coalition report: LGBT women among most economically vulnerable 2015-03-12
Davis endorses Crawford for 46th Ward Runoff 2015-03-11
Writing For Justice: Does voting actually matter? 2015-03-11
Emanuel, Madigan join briefs for marriage equality 2015-03-11
Equality Caucus addresses 'Economics of Equality' 2015-03-11
VIEWS Boston's forgotten role in the women's movement 2015-03-11





Copyright © 2015 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

ALMA names recipients of Young Latino Leaders for Creating Change scholarship
 
NUNN ON ONE: TELEVISION Taryn Manning dishes on new music, 'Orange Is the New Black'
 
Ald. Emma Mitts videotaped making anti-LGBT comments
 
PASSAGES Carl Sharp
 
Accepting HIV status is 'strength' for Chicago athlete
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now
Sponsor


Sponsor

  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.