Election Central

Idaho Democrats’ new LGBTA Caucus to hold ‘Coming Out’ party Friday

The newly formed Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Ally Caucus will be holding a “Coming Out” membership drive to coincide with the 25th anniversary of National Coming Out Day.

The party is Friday at 6 p.m. at Solid in Downtown Boise. National Coming Out day is celebrated by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their allies. This year’s theme is “Coming Out Still Matters.”

“Holding our Coming Out Party on National Coming Out Day is deliberate and symbolic,” said LGBTA Caucus Vice Chair Matthew Montoya in a news release.  “Our intent is to raise awareness of the basic civil rights people are working worldwide to secure for the LGBT community, and to promote awareness of LGBT families being able to live honest and open lives.  The principles behind this day align perfectly with our mission statement and the goals we are working toward.”

The LGBTA Caucus is one of six interest-group caucuses in the Idaho Democratic Party. The others are Idaho Young Democrats, Idaho Democratic Women’s Caucus, LDS Dems, Idaho Democratic Latino Caucus and Idaho Democratic Veteran’s Caucus.

The public is invited to the event, which will feature speakers and a silent auction of gift baskets from local businesses, restaurants and artists.

“We believe our Coming Out Party will be a great way to introduce the Caucus to Idahoans,” said Caucus Chair Evangeline Beechler in the release. “Being a new Caucus, we wanted to create an opportunity for folks to come out and learn about us, find out more about the work we are doing, and have a chance to sign up to be a part of it all.”

Dan Popkey came to Idaho in 1984 to work as a police reporter. Since 1987, he has covered politics and has reported on 25 sessions of the Legislature. Dan has a bachelor's in political science from Santa Clara University and a master's in journalism from Columbia University. He was a Congressional Fellow of the American Political Science Association and a Journalism Fellow at the University of Michigan. A former page in the U.S. House of Representatives, he graduated Capitol Page High School in 1976. In 2007, he led the Statesman’s coverage of the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news. In 2003, he won the Ted M. Natt First Amendment award from the Pacific Northwest Newspaper Association for coverage of University Place, the University of Idaho’s troubled real estate development in Boise. Dan helped start the community reading project "Big Read." He has two children in college and lives on the Boise Bench with an old gray cat.

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