Case: 3:14-cv-00064-bbc Document #: 89 Filed: 03/24/14 Page 1 of 4


DECLARATION OF PLAINTIFF KEITH BORDEN IN SUPPORT OF PLAINTIFFS’ MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT I, Keith Borden, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1746, declare as follows: 1. 2. Wisconsin. 3. 4. I work as a yoga instructor, and I am also a classically trained singer. I have been in a loving, committed relationship with Johannes Wallmann for more I am one of the Plaintiffs in this lawsuit. I was born in 1973 and I am 40 years old. I live in Madison, Dane County,

than 15 years. Johannes and I were legally married in Canada on August 11, 2007. For more than four years, we lived in California as a legally married couple, enjoying and organizing our lives around the protections and obligations afforded to any married couple. When we moved to Wisconsin, the State considered our marriage void. We wish to have our Canadian marriage recognized in Wisconsin. 5. Johannes and I first met in New York City on Halloween in 1998. Johannes was

playing in a band for a concert that I had produced. I like to say that Johannes really stuck out that night because he mistakenly got the idea that he was supposed to wear a costume. He showed up wearing a sailor suit when everyone else was dressed normally. Johannes and I

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began dating a few weeks later and have now been together for more than 15 years. I recognized very early on that we connected with incredibly ease. There wasn’t a lot of uncertainty. It was just natural—like our relationship was the puzzle piece that we needed to complete the picture of what our lives were going to be. 6. I was born and raised in Evanston, Illinois. Johannes and I lived together in New

York City when we were first a couple, but Johannes is a Canadian citizen and only had a temporary visa. We were concerned about the stability of our future together, so we decided to move to Canada, where Johannes was a citizen and where he could sponsor me for permanent residency. Soon Johannes proposed to me and I said yes. 7. Johannes and I thought long and hard about where to hold the ceremony. We

considered Toronto, where we intended to move, but eventually decided on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. We had visited Johannes’ parents there many times and the island was special to us. 8. In May 2007, Johannes and I were in Toronto looking for an apartment with the

intention of moving there in June when Johannes received a call offering him his first tenuretrack job teaching music at California State University, East Bay. Fortunately, the yoga studio where I worked was opening a Bay Area facility. Johannes and I decided that he should accept the job and that we would move to California. Even though our plans to live in Canada had changed, we went ahead with our wedding in Canada because we had already done so much planning and we really wanted to be married. Our wedding took place on August 11, 2007. 9. Johannes and I loved our wedding. Johannes’ grandfather, a retired minister,

performed the religious parts of the ceremony and a Canadian Marriage Commissioner was the officiant for the civil elements. One of the best men was the musician in whose band Johannes


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was playing the night when Johannes and I met, and he and another friend played a version of Kool and the Gang’s “Celebration”—which Johannes arranged—as Johannes and I walked up the aisle as a married couple. 10. At first, our marriage was not considered valid in California. But that changed in

May 2008 when the California Supreme Court legalized marriage for same-sex couples. Unfortunately, California voters then enacted Proposition 8, excluding same-sex couples from marrying in California, which created uncertainty about whether our Canadian marriage would continue to be recognized. The California legislature acted, though, and affirmed the validity of the out-of-state marriages of same-sex couples that were entered into prior to November 5, 2008. As a result, our marriage was legally recognized in California from May 2008 until Johannes and I left the state to move to Wisconsin. California’s marriage ban was later overturned entirely, and same-sex couples now enjoy the freedom to marry there. 11. Johannes and I left California and moved to Wisconsin in 2012 for Johannes’ new

position at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. For more than four years, until we moved to Wisconsin, Johannes and I lived as a married couple under the laws of California. We filed joint state tax returns, I was covered as a spouse on Johannes’ health insurance, and Johannes and I took comfort in the knowledge that we could make critical health decisions on each other’s behalf. The possessions we acquired, such as our car and furniture, were considered marital property. We put off making wills, because we knew that if one of us died the surviving spouse’s interests in our marital property would be protected by California law. Just as

importantly, Johannes and I could refer to each other as “husband” and have everyone— including the state—understand the love, commitment, and permanence of our relationship.


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When we moved to Wisconsin, Johannes and I knew that we were moving to a

state that doesn’t recognize our marriage. For more than four years, we had built a life in reliance on the protections and obligations that marriage provides, but according to the State of Wisconsin, our relationship ceased to exist for legal purposes. ever be subjected to such an indignity. 13. Johannes and I have not registered for a domestic partnership in Wisconsin. It No different-sex couple would

would be a step backwards for us to sign up for a legal status that is so much less than being married when we are already married. 14. Johannes and I are both over the age of 18, have the capacity to contract, are not

within the degrees of consanguinity or affinity prohibited by law for a legal marriage, are not legally married to any other person, and have not been divorced within the past six months. The only reason we are not permitted to marry in the State of Wisconsin is because we are both men. I declare under the penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct. DATE: February 25, 2014 /s Keith Borden Keith Borden


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