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washingtonblade.com - volume 42, issue 50 - december 16, 2011

washingtonblade.com - volume 42, issue 50 - december 16, 2011

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Published by: Washington Blade Newspaper on Dec 15, 2011
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DECEMBER 16 2011 VOLUME 42 ISSUE 50 •
OUR COMMUNITY, OUR STORIES SINCE 1969
• WASHINGTONBLADE.COM
Aponte accused of promoting‘the gay lifestyle’
By CHRIS JOHNSONcjohnson@washblade.com
Senate Republicans successfully filibusteredon Monday the confirmation of an ambassadorialnominee, citing a pro-LGBT editorial she wrote as onereason to vote against her.The cloture vote to advance the nominationof Mari Carmen Aponte for the position of U.S.ambassador to El Salvador failed by 49-37 on amostly party-line basis.Aponte has already been serving as U.S.ambassador to El Salvador through recessappointment. But to remain in effect, the nominationmust be approved by Jan. 3.Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), a Tea Party favorite, saidon the Senate floor that an editorial in favor of LGBTrights that Aponte wrote was a reason to withholdsupport for her.“In her recess-appointed capacity as ambassadorto El Salvador, Ms. Aponte has inflamed tensionsin the very country where she should be improving
GOP thwarts nomineeover pro-gay views
Some laud Solmonese forstate focus, others say marriagecrowding out other priorities
By LOU CHIBBARO JR.lchibbaro@washblade.com
The Human Rights Campaign’s search for a newpresident began in full force on Nov. 22 when anexecutive recruiting firm retained by the HRC boardissued an eight-page job announcement describingthe qualifications and experience sought for the nextleader of the nation’s largest LGBT advocacy group.The release of the job announcement, which isposted on the HRC website, followed an Oct. 3announcement by HRC that its board had retainedRussell Reynolds Associates, a nationally knownexecutive recruitment firm, to assist the board in itssearch for the replacement of Joe Solmonese.Solmonese has held the post of president andCEO of HRC and the HRC Foundation since 2005.He announced in August that he would step downfrom his position when his current contract expires onMarch 30, 2012.“The entire HRC board understands the importanceof this search to our community, to our continuedprogress as a movement and to our organization,”said HRC Board Co-Chair Rebecca Tillet.“That’s why we will run a process that is inclusive andrespects the importance of diversity in the candidatepool,” said Andy Linsky, co-chair of the board of theHRC Foundation, HRC’s research and educational arm.Since Solmonese announced he was steppingdown, LGBT activists have been debating HRC’s rolein the movement its effectiveness during Solmonese’stenure.In an informal survey of LGBT activists in Washingtonand across the country over the past week, the Bladehas found that most believe HRC has done a good jobof advocating for LGBT equality on the federal and statelevel. Leaders of at least seven state and local LGBTorganizations said HRC worked cooperatively with their
CONTINUES ON PAGE 18 CONTINUES ON PAGE 20
HRC President
JOE SOLMONESE
will step down at the endof March.
WASHINGTON BLADE FILE PHOTO BY MICHAEL KEY 
Praise, criticism as HRCheads into new era
Say What?
John Waters and theKinsey Sicks bring theirirreverent take on theholidays to D.C., Baltimore.
PAGE 33
Pet Gifts
Our latest gift guideinstallment offersways to spoil yourpets for the holidays.
PAGE 25
 
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