Voices of Texas

Discrimination is wrong—period. That’s why across the state, Texans are speaking out in support of protecting gay and transgender people from discrimination. Business leaders, people of faith are joining with LGBT people and their families in agreeing that it’s time for Texas to live up to the values of hard work and freedom that define who we are as a state. It’s the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do and it’s how we can ensure Texas remains on the cutting edge of innovation.

Foster mother fights for her son’s rights
ANN ELDER • FRIENDSWOOD If you were to tell Ann Elder, a full-time mom and housewife from Friendswood, Texas that she goes above and beyond the call of motherhood, she would flatly disagree. But the lengths to which Ann Elder has gone to ensure that her transgender son Benjamin is supported and loved is nothing short of inspirational.
Houston mom fights for her kids’ happiness
The Gonzales Family • Houston “I can’t imagine not doing everything I can to make sure my kids are happy and healthy – that’s what you sign up for when you become a parent."
Houston Independent School District Board member fights for non-discrimination policies
JULIET STIPECHE • HOUSTON Juliet Stipeche, a native Houstonian, is an attorney who cares deeply about the Houston community. Her involvement includes practicing medical malpractice law since 1999, working for the Richard Tapia Center for Excellence and Equity at Rice University, and serving on the Houston Independent School District (HISD) Board.
Rice University leader serves as support system for LGBT students
BRANDON MACK • HOUSTON Brandon Mack, lifelong Texan and Senior Assistant Director of Admission at Rice University in Houston, uses his work as a way to promote and protect LGBT rights.
Political activist takes a stand against discrimination
DENISE HAMILTON • PLANO Denise was born in Dallas and has lived in Plano since the seventh grade. Her husband, Bernard, is a former minister and business finance manager. Together they run a highly successful real estate business. Denise is also a Texas Real Estate Commission instructor. However, Denise does much more in the community than simply her job.
There’s nothing conservative about discrimination argues this prominent Republican and business leader
Rudy Oeftering • Dallas As a successful business owner and lifelong Republican, Rudy Oeftering is urging members of his party to back common sense non-discrimination protections for gay and transgender Texans.
Non-discrimination protections are for everybody
Lou Weaver • Houston As the Transgender Outreach Specialist for Texas Wins, Lou works each and every day to win non-discrimination protections for people who are gay or transgender because as he puts it, “all Texans should have the right to equality, all Texans should have the right to live their life to the betterment of the community. When we’re all able to be who we are, we all win.”
Discrimination is counter to who we should be as a people, and counter to what our faith teaches us
Pastor Eric Folkerth • Dallas As the Senior Pastor at Northaven Church—which has a large percentage of gay and transgender congregants—his support for non-discrimination protections is grounded in his faith—that we are all God’s children, and that we should do unto others as we would have them do unto us.
This Texan, born and bred, says discrimination is not a part of who we are
Tiffany Galligan • Austin Tiffany Galligan is a wife, a mother and a business owner. Galligan, who is outspoken about LGBT rights, first learned about the discrimination gay and transgender people experience when as a young girl, her uncle came out as gay.
Supporting nondiscrimination is about leveling the playing field says this pro-soccer player
Chris Seitz • Dallas You may know Chris Seitz as the Goalkeeper on Texas’ soccer team FC Dallas, but what you may not know is that in his free time, Chris is an outspoken advocate against discrimination towards gay and transgender people.
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