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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Charlene Strong, the New Co-Editor for the Seattle Lesbian


Media Contact

The Seattle Lesbian Press Office

(206) 714-2277

The Seattle Lesbian Announces New Co-Editor

(Seattle, April 13, 2011) — The Seattle Lesbian, Seattle’s only lesbian-focused lifestyle and entertainment online news magazine, is announcing a new addition to the fold – Ms. Charlene Strong.

Since the tragic death of her partner, Charlene Strong has become a tireless advocate for equality. With no legal protection for same sex couples in Washington state at the time of her partners death, Charlene had to seek permission from an out-of-state family member for her to be by her dying partner’s side. Her experience while trying to make the funeral arrangements only added insult to the discrimination she endured at the hospital. Charlene testified a month later in front of the Washington state legislature, and her testimony was critical in helping to pass landmark domestic partnership legislation in the state.

Charlene’s story and fight for family rights were paramount in winning a critical campaign in her home state during an attempt to repeal the domestic partnership laws that were put in place by state legislators, Referendum 71.

Charlene has gone on to travel the country with a message that is opening hearts and minds about the collateral damage of inequality many LGBT families continue to endure in this country.

With a focus on hospitalization and end-of-life decision rights, Charlene is working closely with the Washington Hospital Association to help craft education for front-line health care providers and staff in hopes that everyone who enters a hospital knows they are fully protected under the law.

In 2007, Governor Christine Gregoire appointed Charlene to be a Commissioner of Human Rights for the state of Washington.

Charlene’s ongoing work and speaking of behalf of all families has brought her to the White House to meet with President Barack Obama, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelious and the president of the SEIU, the largest nurses’ union in the nation.

Charlene has helped many organizations raise funds and awareness and has the ability to find the message in her speech that resonates with all ages. Her depth of passion and humor also help her to covey the importance and support that all families and individuals should expect in our country.

Not only has Charlene worked on behalf of family rights in her state, she believes strongly that her story is an American story that anyone can understand. As an American who believes strongly in the rights that all citizens are created equal, Charlene’s passion makes her an excellent communicator that inspires others to add their voices as advocates for change.

Charlene is the subject of the award winning documentary, “for my wife…,” chronicling the making of an activist. Charlene’s ongoing work was featured in the USA channel documentary “Bridging the Divide”, with Tom Brokaw. Charlene was asked to speak during the National tour of The Moth and USA Channel, Characters Unite, “From Prejudice to Power”.

In the relatively short time since its launch, The Seattle Lesbian has run exclusive interviews with celebrities Meredith Baxter, Chely Wright, Lily Tomlin, Paula Poundstone, Tabatha Coffey, Jennifer Beals, Thea Gill, Laurel Holloman, Paula Cole, Jenny Shimizu, Cyndi Lauper, and other trendsetters in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

The Seattle Lesbian was honored by Gay City Health Project in February 2011 for working to bridge the gap between the gay and lesbian communities.

Speaking of the honor, The Seattle Lesbian Editor-in-Chief Sarah Toce had this to say:

"We are all waging the same fight for equality, whether we consider ourselves gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, or any other category we may fall into as a specific group of underserved people. We are in this together and it’s time that we stand together, pool all of our resources and be there for one another. What affects one of us affects all of us. My hope is for The Seattle Lesbian to continue to be a safe haven for the LGBT community and our allies as a whole.”

In addition to the Gay City Health Project recognition, national recognition has also been garnered for the hard work put forth by Toce and her crew. The Seattle Lesbian was featured in the March 2011 issue of Curve – the best-selling lesbian print magazine of all-time – as well as The San Diego Gay & Lesbian News, SheWired, Atlanta’s Alternative Perspectives, Sacramento Examiner, 97.3 KIRO FM, the Edge Network brand (Boston, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and New England editions), and more.

Along with Toce and Strong, The Seattle Lesbian team consists of established contributing writers: Cara Alderson, Trisha Barnard, Camille Bloom, Lisa Gunther, Jimmy Lentz, Jerry Nunn, Patti Reeves, Stacey S., and Heather Sorgen. Staff photographer Stephanie Brusig rounds out the bunch and serves as the go-to for exclusive event coverage (The Dinah, Lilith Fair, President Obama’s visit to the University of Washington, to name a few.) You can read staff biographies and see photos here:

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