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Mayor Emanuel hosts annual Pride reception
by Tracy Baim, Windy City Times


Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel welcomed dozens of LGBT leaders, business owners, activists and politicians to Roscoe's bar on Halsted Street June 27 for his annual LGBTQ Pride reception.

Jim Ludwig, co-owner of the bar with partner Patrick Maloney, welcomed the crowd.

Kim Hunt, executive director of Pride Action Tank, introduced the mayor. She mentioned his record on LGBT issues, including the recent push to have the Halsted Street rainbow pylons, adorned with LGBT history plaques from The Legacy Project, named as a historic landmark.

Emanuel spoke about the news of the day, the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, and said now more than ever it was important to show the city as welcoming to all people. Emanuel also spoke about the push to get Chicago to zero new HIV infections.

Openly gay Ald. Tom Tunney spoke next, passionately recalling what the LGBT community went through during the early years of the AIDS crisis. He said his ward is working on an AIDS memorial garden located by the Belmont Rocks at Lake Michigan, and he will have announcements soon on the progress for that project.

Several city commissioners were in attendance, including Mona Noriega of the Commission on Human Relations, who joined Emanuel on stage. Politicians at the event included openly gay state Rep. Greg Harris, openly gay Ald. Raymond Lopez and Ald. James Capplemen, joined by allies Ald. Pat Dowell, Ald Sophia King and Ald. John Arena. Lamont Robinson, openly gay candidate for state rep, was also at the event.

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