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Equality Utah announces 2014 Allies for Equality awards

Written by Staff

Each year at their annual Allies Dinner, Equality Utah selects people or organizations as their “Allies of the Year.” At this year’s dinner, to be held Sept. 26 at the Salt Palace Grand Ballroom, three awards will be given: Salt lake District Attorney Sim Gill, Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker and Affirmation LGBT Mormons Families and Friends. Tickets are available at equalityutah.org/allies-dinner

The organization said the following on each in a statement:

Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill — Restoring the Public Trust

Four years ago, Sim Gill made a promise to the residents of Salt Lake County. Very simply, he said if given the opportunity, he would restore integrity and public trust to the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s office.

And he’s making good on his word.

Sim is passionate about Salt Lake County and the people who live there. That’s why he believes the mission of Salt Lake County’s District Attorney’s Office is to not just create safe communities, but do it the right way.

With integrity. Professional competence. Fairness. Vision. And a passionate commitment to provide a high standard of public service.

“Without integrity, there is no justice. I am restoring the public trust in the Salt Lake County District Attorney’s office, because I strongly believe nobody is above the law. And as a true fiscal conservative, I am running this office more efficiently and effectively, while re-focusing our energy on keeping our neighborhoods safe.” –Sim Gill

Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker

Ralph Becker was sworn in as Mayor of Salt Lake City in January, 2008. Prior to being elected Mayor, he was a member of the Utah House of Representatives, from 1996 to 2007, serving seven years in leadership including five years as the House Democratic Leader.

As Mayor, Ralph has been an advocate for expanding mobility options within Salt Lake City, including expanding trails and bikeways and developing light rail and street car opportunities. He has also significantly expanded protections for the City’s LGBT individuals through the Mutual Commitment Registry and Non-Discrimination ordinances. Additionally, Mayor Becker worked to bring Salt Lake City’s alcohol policy in line with other major tourist destinations and cities. As Mayor, Ralph Becker has actively expanded public input opportunities, access to City information, and the decision making process. During the recession, Mayor Becker overcame the largest budget gaps in the City’s history without raising taxes, reductions in core City services, or significant layoffs.

Away from work, Mayor Becker is an avid outdoorsman and outdoor enthusiast. He is a backcountry skier, backpacker and river runner and personifies the adventurous spirit that brings so many people to Salt Lake City. He has two sons and 17 year-old granddaughter.

Affirmation — LGBT Mormons, Families, and Friends

Affirmation supports LGBTQ Mormons and their families, friends and Church leaders in seeking to live healthy and productive lives consistent with their faith or heritage. They provide a loving, inclusive community for all LGBTQ people, regardless of how they identify in their sexual orientation, gender identity, or faith.

They encourage spirituality and empower LGBTQ Mormons to make valuable contributions within and outside of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They organize local gatherings and international conferences, provide informational resources, and work for dialogue within the Church.
Affirmation recognizes that, while full inclusion of LGBTQ people in the social contract that undergirds every democratic society is essential, we are more than just social or political beings. We are also spiritual beings who yearn for answers to fundamental questions about who we are, where we come from, and what is the purpose of our existence.

Affirmation is the largest and oldest organization of, by and for LGBTQ Mormons, their families and friends, has active chapters throughout North and South America, and members on six continents. It was founded in faith that, despite widespread views to the contrary, there is a place for LGBTQ Mormons in their Church and in the Kingdom of God, and that faith can be a guide and a light to us in achieving our birthright as children of God.

In recent years, Affirmation’s recommitment to its founding purposes has reenergized the LGBTQ Mormon community in Utah and beyond, and is attracting larger numbers of straight Mormon allies to this cause than ever before in its history.

In the process, more and more LGBTQ individuals are finding an inclusive community where they feel worth, wholeness and love, and where they are supported in their individual quests for meaning and integrity. Affirmation is playing a vital role in providing individuals the spiritual strength they need to give meaning to all their other endeavors as full and equal members of our society.

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