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Oct 31, 2013

N.C. Sen. Josh Stein Receives Equality NC Foundation's Inaugural Jamie Kirk Hahn Ally Award

Award to be presented at 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala on Nov. 9, in Greensboro

Raleigh, N.C. — Equality NC Foundation announced today that North Carolina State Senator Josh Stein (D-Wake), would receive the inaugural Jamie Kirk Hahn Ally Award, presented from the 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala, November 9, in Greensboro.

The Jamie Kirk Hahn Ally Award is Equality NC Foundation’s inaugural acknowledgement of North Carolina activist Jamie Kirk Hahn and her extraordinary pro-equality work. Her efforts in the campaign to defeat Amendment One, North Carolina’s constitutional ban on the freedom to marry, and beyond, make her the standard-bearer for this honor.

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This lasting tribute to this champion of Equality will be renamed posthumously in her honor at the 2013 Equality Gala, and will be awarded to “a North Carolina Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender ally for the ages.”

“In 2013, Jamie Kirk Hahn left behind an extensive legacy of service to marginalized communities, that included extraordinary advocacy for LGBT North Carolinians. Jamie was a personal hero of mine in her work for all people, but especially our community,” said Chris Sgro, executive director of Equality NC. “The 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala will therefore provide the perfect backdrop to honor not only Jamie’s life and contributions to our community, but also, in renaming the award in her honor, pay touching tribute to Sen. Josh Stein’s exceptional advocacy for LGBT North Carolinians in 2013 and throughout his career.”

Now serving in his third term, Sen. Stein has long been considered one of the state's strongest allies for LGBT equality. The progressive Democrat actively worked to include sexual orientation and gender identity in K-12 anti-bullying legislation culminating in 2009’s School Violence Prevention Act, he openly opposed Amendment One, North Carolina’s 2012 constitutional ban on the freedom to marry, and he has tirelessly worked to add sexual orientation and gender identity in the state's workplace non-discrimination law.

In 2012-2013, Sen. Stein was the primary sponsor of Senate Bill 544 (Nondiscrimination in State Employment), the latest in Stein’s long-standing legislative effort to protect gay and transgender workers from discrimination. In addition, Stein was one of the state's most vocal and visible legislative defenders of North Carolina voter rights, valiantly fighting efforts to restrict and suppress North Carolinians' access to the polls.

"Equality NC is thrilled to recognize the tireless advocacy of Sen. Josh Stein at the 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala,” said Chris Sgro, Executive Director of Equality NC Foundation. “We encourage all advocates for Equality to join us for this special evening as we celebrate the exemplary work of this amazing North Carolina leader.”

Other recipients of its 2013 Equality Awards include:

N.C. Rep. Tricia Cotham, Matthews, N.C.
(2013 Legislative Leadership Award)
The annual Equality NC Foundation Legislative Leadership Award recognizes exemplar pro-equality leadership in the North Carolina General Assembly.

Freedom Center for Social Justice, Charlotte, N.C.
(2013 Organization of the Year Award)
This inaugural award recognizes an extraordinary North Carolina organization doing groundbreaking work for LGBT citizens.

Janet Joyner, Winston-Salem, N.C.
(2013 Bob Page Equality Champion Award)
The Bob Page Equality Champion Award - named for a visionary leader in North Carolina's LGBT movement - honors a legacy of advocacy for LGBT North Carolinians.

For more information about the awards and recipients, visit:

The awards will be presented at the 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala on Saturday, November 9, in downtown Greensboro (Empire Room, 203 S Elm St., Greensboro, NC 27401.) Registration details for the 2013 Equality NC Foundation Gala is available at:

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