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Marriage Equality USA’s NYC closing party

What do you do after you’ve worked yourself out of a job? Throw a party at The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center! Marriage Equality USA did just that in New York City, just 2 days before the 1 year anniversary of the Obergefell arguments at the Supreme Court.

This is what two decades of campaign swag and photos look like.

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Every organization displays a thank-you note from the President at their closing celebration, right?DSC_6819-min (1)

Current (and final!) MEUSA Executive Director and his fiancé Jonathan were game for my questions.

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I’d like to submit as my thesis that this series of photos visually depicts Brian’s commitment to quality and attention to detail and gives some insight as to why the organization was so successful. “Jonathan just erased his! I need the eraser.” “It’s OK, I’m sure everything looks great.” “I’m redoing mine.” “OK, Brian.”

SCOTUS plaintiffs Joseph Vitale and Rob Talmas.

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New York plaintiffs Michael Sabatino and Robert Voorheis

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Congratulations to all! Marriage Equality USA as an organization is no more – but their network and resources live on as part of Freedom For All Americans. There’s plenty more work that needs to be done, and FFAA is on the job.

 

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And in the end, the left was right

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Well, after all the predictions that we were going to get something different out of the court – about how they’d decide, about when they’d announced, about who’d write the decision, about how the numbers would split – in the end, we got an announcement the day they’d announced similar decisions twice before, written by a justice who’d written those same decisions and a split from a divided court along predictable lines. But, unlike Windsor two years ago, when the 26th fell on a Wednesday (not that that had stopped anyone from celebrating), this year the court was nice enough to release on a Friday. In our favor.

Pam and Nicole, 2 of the Ohio plaintiffs, traveled to DC for the decision and were kind enough to take part in this project. Grayden and Orion, not pictured, are both off-the-charts adorable. That’s Spencer Perry behind them, and if you squint extra hard you can see Kris and Sandy way in the back.

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I waited too long to go to the lockers after the decision was read, so I wasn’t able to run out the front doors right away with the first viewing group and I got “stuck” behind with the plaintiffs while security waited for some of the crowds to disperse. It wasn’t intentional on my part, but it meant I was able to get some interesting behind-the-scenes photos. To wit:

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Oh hey there John Becker

Oh hey there John Becker

Enough court! Party time!

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This happened:

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But before it got really dark, there was this:

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Nellie’s! Town! Marriage! Friends! Angelina’s pizza!

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SAGE Metro DC had their annual summer pool party the next night

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Hurray for supportive parents Fred and Marge!

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I brought my camera with me Sunday morning, just for fun. I found this trio chillin’ in A-town. We’re everywhere.

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I don’t know what, if anything, this blog will be now that marriage is here, but the “road to marriage equality” series is certainly complete. Creating this has been quite the ride (literally, with trains 🚄 and buses 🚌!) and I’ve had a blast. Thank you for being a part of it, however you were! 😍

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Equality Virginia’s Annual National Dinner (and everyday awesomeness)

So! Equality Virginia held their annual fundraiser April 18th. I was only able to photograph one couple in front of the step and repeat because competition for that was FIERCE.

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I WAS able to photograph one of the plaintiff couples, Carol and Mary, with an awesome assist from their awesome daughter Emily during the “no peeking” part!

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Virginia got marriage last year, so some of the couples who were finally able to get married in-state mentioned that. Jenn and Sharon had gotten engaged just the day before! (That shiny thing on Sharon’s left hand is a flashing engagement ring and you should be super sad you didn’t get one.)

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There was color coordination, natch.

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And then I GOT PROOF:

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Here are some BFFs getting in on the action

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More couples

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The match of the night!

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And I ended when they kicked us out (haha) at midnight, with a group of friends, because who says friends can’t all love a thing about each other? Exactly.

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You can check out EQVA’s photos and make a donation at equalityvirginia.org. Congrats on another amazing event!

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Palmetto love

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“At 10:30am on November 20, we received notice that the US Supreme Court did not grant the SC Attorney General’s request for a further delay in the issuance of same sex marriage licenses. Therefore, we are now accepting applications for marriage licenses for same sex couples.

Debora Faulkner

Greenville County Probate Judge”

Well, it finally happened! South Carolina is #35!

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Here’s the state seal. Translations are as follows . Below the tree: He has planted one better than the fallen” “Prepared  in Mind and Resources” Above her: “While I Breathe I Hope” “Hope”

Licenses were $35 but couples could get a pretty keepsake envelope for an extra buck.

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The local Fox affiliate arrived at FIVE AM  to camp out outside. Ouch.

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There was general merriment (marryment?) and adorableness, both outside…

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And inside. As always, click to make ’em bigger.  Look how excited Hughston and Edward are!

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They came back after the 24 hour waiting period with their kids. In a limo. OMG.

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Couples were able to pick up their license the next day after EXACTLY 24 hours. The first couple to apply, David and Sonny, were also the first to pick up. They were 13 minutes early.

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It's time!

It’s time!

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And the very last couple of the day, Steve and Dru.

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Congratulations, Palmetto State residents! Thank you for all the love, and all the barbecue.

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OMG VA!

OMG! On October 6, 2014, in an unexpected non-decision, the Supreme Court denied cert in several marriage cases, immediately bringing equality to my home state of Virginia as well as Utah, Oklahoma, Wisconsin and Indiana.

Arlington County held a presser with Virginia’s Attorney General, Mark Herring, and state and county elected officials.

HerringelectedsOct6County clerk Paul Ferguson announced that his office would begin issuing licenses immediately.

clerkPaulFerguson It was amazing. It’s been a few weeks and couples have received licenses so I’m pretty sure I’m not dreaming.

Party at Arlington’s Freddie’s Beach Bar!

Tara and Michelle, 4 years, 4 months

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Jody and Brian, 17 years

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Rick and Joe, 16 years

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Scott and Matt, 11 months and 10 days

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The Unitarian Universalist Church had a celebration on Sunday, because duh!

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Arlington County Chair Jay Fisette and his husband Bob Rosen, 31 years

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Human Rights Campaign after party at The Dignitary

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Happy 8th anniversary to Jason and Daniel!

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Scott and John, 20 years

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Becky squared🙂

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Sometimes the temptation to peek was unbearable.

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Ariel and Nathan, 21 years

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Nellie’s!

Cody and Matt, no idea because I forgot to ask. I basically forgot to ask everyone at Nellie’s.

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Jason and James.

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Lucy and Alex

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Amanda and Angela.

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SMYAL’s Fall Brunch after party

 Katy Ray and Erica, 1 year

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Lisa and Tonya, friends for 20+

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Crys and Tarishi, 2 years, 3 months

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Congrats! Only 18 to go!

OMG VA!

OMG! On October 6, 2014, in an unexpected non-decision, the Supreme Court denied cert in several marriage cases, immediately bringing equality to my home state of Virginia as well as Utah, Oklahoma, Wisconsin and Indiana.

Mark and Martin renewing vows - use!

Finally! Legal Observation & Recognition In Delray & Auburndale!

Marriage equality arrived in Florida on January 6. Palm Beach County clerk and comptroller Sharon Block opened the Delray office late Monday night and performed a group ceremony at 12:01. Someone brought a speaker and started playing At Last while couples were waiting for the office to open. (Click to make them bigger)

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It was just like the DMV, if people at the DMV were happy.

It was just like being at the DMV, if people at the DMV were happy.

They had their own photographer

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These brothers were excited for their moms...

These brothers were excited for their moms…

But their sister was NOT having it (it was super late, to be fair)

But their sister was NOT having it (it was super late, to be fair)

I got one nice one

I got one nice one

Look, it’s Martin and Mark again! First, I asked them how long they’ve been a couple

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Then, I asked them to share their favorite thing about each other. They showed each other,

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Then they showed me

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Here they are at the midnight ceremony

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And here’s some more love

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Donald and Jim years together 3 - use!Donald and Jim show me - use! Who's that in the corner! Suze Orman! Wait! Who’s that in the corner???

Everybody cheered for the clerk and her staff when they arrived, but we all lost our collective mind when Suze Orman showed up.

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This couple decided to sit down while they waited for midnight to arrive. I could not have supported them more.

This couple decided to sit down while they waited for midnight to arrive. I could not have supported them more.

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Yay! Midnight! The office put out little cards so folks could write about why marriage matters to them. The cakes were separate but equally delicious. I checked.

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Clerk Block and her staff really did seem genuinely excited about the news. She was still taking photos with people when I left at 2:30am.

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I served as a witness (my first!) the next morning at Mike and Armond’s wedding, officiated by Reverend CJ McGregor of the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Palm Beaches.

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Yes, the Reverend was reading vows from his phone, and yes, it was amazing.

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Gotta make it official!

Gotta make it official!

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Marion and Wayne

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"We can't exchange rings because I can't take mine off!"

“We can’t exchange rings because I can’t take mine off!”

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There was a small group gathering in front of the courthouse. Lake Worth city commissioner Chris McVoy gave some remarks and took photos with Shirley and Joan.

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SAVE Dade and ACLU Florida held their own celebration and vow-renewal ceremony that night in Miami.

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The whole thing was adorable and lovely and wonderful. Congratulations to the plaintiff couples and everyone I met in Florida! See you in April…?

http://www.scotusblog.com/2015/01/court-will-rule-on-same-sex-marriage/