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Gay man discharged under ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ named Presidential Inauguration citizen co-chair

The Presidential Inauguration Committee announced Thursday (January 17) that an openly gay veteran of the Air Force will be among the eight “Citizen Co-Chairs” for President Obama’s second inaugural ceremony.

David Hall, an official with Outserve-SLDN who helped with the successful effort to repeal the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell law banning open gays from the military, was chosen as one of eight Americans to “reflect the core values of this Administration and the theme of the 57th Presidential Inauguration: Our People. Our Future.”

Presidential Inauguration Committee Executive Director David Cusack issued a statement saying each of the eight co-chairs was selected for his or her “extraordinary contributions to their communities.”

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Out in the military: One year without ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

One year without DADT

On Sept. 20, the United States military will mark the one-year anniversary of the official repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the 1993 law that barred gays and lesbians from openly serving in the armed services. As the milestone nears, gay military members are thrilled to be able to be out, but note that inequities remain.

“During DADT, I did not ever hang out with other gays or even act on doing anything in fear of being caught so I waited until it was repealed to come out,” said Joshua Gravett, a gay Georgia native and sergeant in the U.S. Army currently stationed in Afghanistan.

Before repeal, Gravett — who enlisted at age 17 — planned to leave the Army. Now, he is considering completing the 20-year military career that would allow him to retire from the service at age 37.

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Gay military org creates magazine for gay soldiers

OutServe Magazine's debut issue drops in April

OutServe, a collection of underground LGBT military personnel, announced today that it will publish a new magazine geared toward gay servicemembers. OutServe was formed in 2010 as the debate over the military's “Don't Ask, Don't Tell” policy moved into the political spotlight.

The magazine's inaugural cover highlights a United States military in a post-DADT era.

“Our first objective with the magazine is to let all the gay, lesbian, bi, and trans members currently serving know that they are not alone,” said OutServe’s co-director, an active-duty officer who goes by the pseudonym JD Smith, via a press release. “And we also want to communicate to all troops that there are capable gay military members serving honorably, and that accepting that and moving on will make our military stronger.”