• 01 Jul 2011 11:29 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    It sounds like a great set-up for drama: My spouse, Marcus, who used to be Margery, goes back to the college he attended as a woman, which happens to be a women's college, Mount Holyoke.

    How will the alumnae respond when one of their own shows up at their 25th reunion as a man?

    Read full article here.

  • 23 Jun 2011 1:03 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Playwrights Erica Berman (above) and Katie Liesener (below).

    You know when two people have a good working relationship. Like in any good friendship they finish each others’ sentences; they laugh at private jokes; the chemistry is hard to miss. This is true of Somerville Playwrights Erica Berman and Katie Liesener. These two women are co-producing a play The Nitty Gritty that will showcase on June 25 at Cambridge’s YMCA Theater at 7:30PM.

    I met the pair at one of my favorite Union Square hangouts Bloc 11 (The other being the Sherman Cafe), on a cool June morning. Both women agreed that for them Somerville is truly “The Paris of New England.” They are constantly inspired by our creative burg. Although they met in Brookline, MA, their shared Somerville backgrounds gave them an immediate connection.

    Liesener said she hopes their play will present a different aspect of the “Queer Conversation.” Both women feel that Gay Theater is often a lot of sizzle but not enough steak. Liesener opined “It is full of glam, glitter, Gay Pride, undressing, but the everyday “Nitty Gritty” of day to day life has not been adequately addressed.” Issues of Gay community, and yes even the use of a dildo, will be part of the conversation among the different women portrayed in the play.

    Katie Liesener was a journalist for a number of years, writing for The Boston Globe, and the Community Newspaper Corporation. Although she thinks journalism is very valuable training for a writer, it sort of straitjacketed her. She said: “I always had to be objective. I couldn’t tell my own story. I could not interject myself into the article.” So she gave up journalism and gained the “Freedom to talk about my own experiences for once,” she said.

    Berman, a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and Emerson College, runs the Watertown Children’s Theater, where she currently directs 60 kids under the age of 13 in main stage shows. Berman said “I work six days a week. I am involved with the full artistic visionundefinedlighting, costumes, sets, etc. I love it and I love working with children.”

    Liesener and Berman count as their role models the playwright Lisa Kron and the Five Lesbian Brothers. Even so, their work smacks of their own original signature.

    Liesener, who teaches writing at Emmanuel College, said teaching does not detract from her own work. She reflected, “I find that when I teach I rediscover what’s important in writing. I become more aware.”

    Both artists are clear that they have to hustle to keep those wolves from the door. Berman also teaches at a private school, and Liesener said she lives cheaply, but quite happily.

    As I left Bloc 11 and walked by the café’s window, I noticed the playwrights still talking animatedly, creative sparks flying. I hope they turned the fire alarm off.

    For more info go to

  • 06 Jun 2011 12:15 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    In June 2009, on the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, first published nine pages of New York City Police Department records.

    These records for the first time revealed the names of four previously unknown persons arrested during the course of the rebellion, one woman and three men.

    In June 2011, OutHistory is appealing for information about any of those four persons: Marilyn Fowler, Vincent DePaul, Wolfgang Podolski, and Thomas Staton.

    Perhaps New York City-area phonebooks from 1969 would reveal old addresses, perhaps the Social Security Death Index would reveal information, perhaps friends of the arrestees will come forward with evidence. 

    If you discover any information  about the four arrestees, please send that information to Jonathan Ned Katz at at:

    For the entry on the Stonewall Riot Police Reports, June 28, 1969 see

    Jonathan Ned Katz
    Founder, Co-Director,
    LGBTQ History by the LGBTQ Community: Fight Against Forgetting!
  • 20 May 2011 3:13 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Do you know an alum who has made a difference in the global fight against the AIDS epidemic? Have you or another MHC alum you know worked in international or domestic medical, advocacy, or research fields of HIV/AIDS in the past 30 years?

    The Alumnae Quarterly wants to hear about it! Send an email to Hannah Clay Wareham '09 at, and you could be part of a future Q story.
  • 03 May 2011 11:38 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    For a young woman leader in the social justice movement

    Apply by July 15!

    The Edna Award will honor a young woman leader in the social justice movement who has made an extraordinary contribution early in her career, and whose achievements indicate that her work will continue to significantly improve the lives of working women and men.

    The $10,000 award is named after Edna Berger, the foundation’s namesake and an early organizer at The Newspaper Guild-CWA. Women can apply for the award themselves or be nominated by others.

    To spotlight the contributions of young women leaders

    "With the Edna Award, the Berger-Marks Foundation is expanding its commitment to young women," says Linda Foley, President of the Foundation. "We want to spotlight their important contributions to social justice. Women are organizing unions; women are leading campaigns for universal health care; and women are demonstrating to young people what social justice means." 

    "The Berger-Marks Foundation and the Edna Award honor the vision of a social justice movement where all workers have an opportunity to lead," noted AFL-CIO Secretary Treasurer Liz Shuler, who encouraged "all young women to apply for this award and become involved in shaping a just future."

    The Edna Award follows up on the findings of the "Stepping Up, Stepping Back: Women Activists ‘Talk Union’ Across Generations" report the Foundation published last summer. It "demonstrates the Berger-Marks Foundation’s commitment to further engaging the next generation of social justice women leaders by creating a special honor just for them," explained Louise D. Walsh, Chairperson of the Foundation.

    How to apply

    The application calls for a short essay, resumé and two letters of recommendation. Nominees must be 35 years or younger on 12/31/2011. Applications will be accepted through July 15, and the award will be presented in the fall. Young women from labor unions, women’s groups, workers’ rights groups and other areas of social justice are encouraged to apply.
  • 30 Apr 2011 11:49 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Joan E Biren '66, an internationally recognized photographer and documentary artist, assembled a collection of ephemera and materials related to queer films, both foreign and domestic. She donated her collection, dubbed the Queer Film Museum, to the Smithsonian, and the finding aid for the collection is now available.

  • 31 Mar 2011 9:38 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    I’ve always been skeptical about women’s colleges.

    I grew up in Amherst within a few miles of Smith and Mount Holyoke where, I admit, I tried to sneak into parties as a high school student. Beyond serving a destination for horny young men, the colleges always gave me the creeps, perhaps because I was explicitly excluded from the community or because of some juvenile fantasy that the schools harbored a lesbian cult. Still, the women who went there, it seemed to me, were living in some bygone gender-segregated era where such a place had a purpose. I assumed they went to women’s colleges largely because they couldn’t get into the numerous elite coed schools.

    Why go to Smith if you could go to Amherst?

    Read the rest of the article here.

  • 29 Mar 2011 9:47 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Stonewall Community Foundation is currently accepting applications for its Traub-Dicker Rainbow Scholarship for lesbian identified students. They will award three $3,000 scholarships. Applicant must demonstrate their motivation to making a difference and have a history of academic excellence and community service.

    Applications are due on April 15, 2011.

    Established by Peggy Traub and Phyllis Dicker, this scholarship encourages and supports LGBT students in their quest for higher education. The TDRS grants scholarships to lesbian-identified students in two categories: 1) Graduating high school seniors who plan on attending a recognized college or university; and, 2) Already matriculated college students in any year of study, including graduate school.

    If you have any questions, or want an application, please contact:

    Thai Pham | Deputy Director
    Stonewall Community Foundation
    119 West 24th Street, New York, NY 10011
    Tel 212-367-1265 | Fax 212-367-1157
  • 21 Mar 2011 5:42 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Martha Ackmann, who discussed her biography of pro female baseball player Toni Stone at the Hall of Fame this past weekend, talked to about the pioneering Minnesota native.

    Toni Stone
    National Baseball Hall of FameToni Stone

    Read the whole article
  • 08 Mar 2011 6:28 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The It Gets Better Project has changed many people's lives. LGBT youth are beginning to feel the change and acceptance. They are beginning to believe that it does get better. Over 10,000 videos have been submitted to raise awareness about teenage bullying and ways to help. The next goal is to get the It Gets Better book into every school library across the country so that every bullied child has access to resources and can know that it does get better.

    Click here to donate a book to a high school library for $25.
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