HONORING THE LIFE OF GLORIA JOHNSON
(Extensions of Remarks - October 30, 2013)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E1618]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                  HONORING THE LIFE OF GLORIA JOHNSON

                                 ______
                                 

                          HON. SCOTT H. PETERS

                             of california

                    in the house of representatives

                      Wednesday, October 30, 2013

  Mr. PETERS of California. Mr. Speaker, today we pay tribute to the 
life of Gloria Johnson, a nationally recognized activist and San Diego 
community leader who worked tirelessly for more than 50 years for 
social justice and civil rights. With Gloria's passing this September, 
it is fitting we honor her as a strong-willed, compassionate, loyal, 
and tenacious trailblazer whose legacy will continue through those she 
mentored and in the communities she nurtured. Gloria will be remembered 
as a champion for women, the LGBT community, and progressive values.
  Gloria was born on August 26 and took immense pride in the fact she 
shared her birthday with Women's Equality Day, and she lived in 
accordance with its principles. Gloria was a member of the National 
Organization for Women for more than 40 years, including serving as a 
state board member and president of the local chapter. She campaigned 
for the Equal Rights Amendment, even receiving jail time for civil 
disobedience after protesting the measure's defeat. In addition to 
campaigning arduously for women leaders including Hilary Clinton, Nancy 
Pelosi, and many in our local and state legislatures, Gloria served as 
a mentor to many young women and was appointed to the Governor's 
Committee on Women's Issues and inducted into the county's Women's Hall 
of Fame, thus promoting women's rights in multiple forums.
  Gloria worked for the County of San Diego for thirty years, serving 
as a champion for the LGBT community. During the latter half of her 
tenure, and at the onset of the AIDS epidemic, she was one of the first 
social workers in San Diego to work with individuals suffering from the 
disease in the county's AIDS Case Management Program. Gloria took 
immense pride in that work, for which San Diego's LGBT community is 
profoundly grateful. Additionally, she served as cochair of a committee 
created to defeat a 1978 California state initiative that would have 
banned gays and lesbians from teaching in public schools.
  While she most recently served as cochair of the California 
Democratic Party LGBT Caucus, Gloria's extensive political activism and 
leadership began many years prior. In 1977, she joined the newly formed 
San Diego Democratic Club (now Democrats for Equality), became 
president of the club in 1980, and remained a sitting board member 
until her death. Named one of The Advocate's top 400 U.S. gay leaders 
in 1984, she also served as founding member of Lesbian Rights Task 
Force and board member of the National Stonewall Democrats.
  Mr. Speaker, it is with great respect that I ask my colleagues in the 
House of Representatives to join me in paying tribute to the life of 
Gloria Johnson. Gloria's active leadership, steadfast beliefs, 
pioneering character, and inclusive spirit will be missed by many.

                          ____________________