Pictured Chicago HRC supporters attended a reception for Human Rights Campaign Executive Director Cheryl Jacques last week. From left: Susan Harris, Liza Reynolds, Cheryl Jacques, Jackie Perry, Ralph Nelson, Dan Diem and Kent Bracken. Photo by Cathy Sebaugh
The chance to meet new Human Rights Campaign Executive Director Cheryl Jacques (RIGHT) drew nearly 200 individuals to the Swissotel last Friday for a reception and three-course welcoming dinner. Jacques, who served nearly a dozen years in the Massachusetts legislature as state senator, took the reins of HRC the first week of January, replacing long-time director Elizabeth Birch, who has been serving as an adviser on the Howard Dean presidential campaign.
Serving part of her senator's tenure in silence, Jacques was moved to coming out publicly when she sat among the hundreds of thousands of lesbians and gay men at HRC's Equality Rocks concert in May 2000. Jacques wrote a letter in the wee hours of a June morning and e-mailed it to the Boston Globe, which published it a few hours later. She said the positive response from her Bay State constituents was overwhelming and she won the following November's re-election by the largest margin of victory she had experienced to that point.
Jacques and her partner, Jenn Wade Chrisler (who was not in attendance), are raising twin sons Timmy and Tommy. [See page 11.]
— Text and photo by Cathy Seabaugh