This time last year, I announced in this space that I was accepting the position of editor of Georgia Voice. The reason I gave was tied into what happened the previous November.

“Of the numerous reactions to the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of the United States — fear, anger, anxiety, disbelief — one of the common ones that emerged was a desire to get more involved in the electoral process, whether through a new or rededicated commitment to LGBT activism or an entry into politics. That same reaction was felt here with the Georgia Voice staff,” I wrote. “For me personally, it made me think about what kind of role I want to have in the conversation going forward. What opportunities were there within my grasp that I could utilize to report on and speak out for Georgia’s LGBT community? For my community.”

Unfortunately, as you know, the president lived up to the hype. I won’t list all of the damage he did toward the LGBT community, as you know most or all of it by now. But I will mention one thing that isn’t getting the attention it deserves: the judicial appointments. President Trump appointed a slew of anti-LGBT judges to lifetime appointments, meaning the assault on the community’s rights will continue long after he leaves office.

While all of this was going on throughout the year, we at Georgia Voice were determined to be aggressive in exposing any anti-LGBT acts carried out by anyone on either side of the aisle. The tricky part is that you all were bombarded with terrible news from so many different angles all year, so how do we make sure to stay in front of you and get you the stories you need to see? Keeping up a dialogue and staying engaged with you was key, and it’s something we want to get better and better about as we head into 2018.

That being said, I invite you — as I’ve done all along — to call us out. Hold us accountable and tell us when we’re not getting it right, or not shedding light on people whose voices deserve to be raised up. You know which social media channels at which to reach us, or, as always, shoot me a line at editor@thegavoice.com or hit me up on Twitter @patricksaunders.

We’ve got some new things coming your way this year by the way. Thanks to you, Georgia Voice is growing, and with that we’ll be distributing our print product farther and wider than we ever have before. Y’all have been giving us great feedback on what neighborhoods and areas of town around the state where you would like to see the paper, so keep it coming!

You’ll also see our distribution boxes getting an upgrade as well. It’s purely cosmetic, yes, but it’s overdue.

We’ve got some website upgrades that I won’t bore you with the details of, but rest assured you’ll benefit from it on your end of the screen.

And we also introduce a new monthly feature called Ask The Doctor, where the experts at AbsoluteCARE answer reader-submitted questions. The first installment is in this issue and it deals with PrEP. Send your questions via our social media channels or to askthedoctor@thegavoice.com.

And if you thought 2017 was a wild election year, get ready. Elections are being held this November for the top four statewide offices (including governor), every congressional seat and every state House and state Senate seat.

We’ll also be sitting down with Atlanta’s new mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, in the coming weeks. Have a question you want us to ask her? Let us know.

It’s going to be another memorable year with hopefully more ups than downs this time around, but just know that either way we’ll be right here with you for it all. We consider it an honor to do so.

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