National Politics Panel

Thursday, July 2, 8:15 pm - 9:30 pm
Congress Hall

520 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106


Held in historic Congress Hall, where Congress first met from 1790 to 1800, this panel of savvy movement leaders explores political changes over the past 50 years, the impact of marriage equality, and current and future challenges.

NOTE: All attendees must enter the park at the corner of 5th and Chestnut Streets at the security checkpoint. Admission is on a first-come, first-served basis.


Kevin Naff (Moderator)
Washington Blade

Kevin Naff is the editor of the Washington Blade, the nation’s oldest and most acclaimed LGBT news publication, founded in 1969. An award-winning journalist, Naff has been honored by the Society of Professional Journalists for his editorial writing.

Kirk Fordham (Panelist)
Executive Director
Gill Action Fund

Kirk Fordham is the executive director of Gill Action, a political organization founded to secure equal rights for all Americans regardless of sexual orientation and gender expression. Before he was named to the position in 2012, Fordham served for four years as the chief executive officer of the Everglades Foundation. A veteran political  strategist with a strong bipartisan track record, Fordham served for 14 years as a chief of staff and senior legislative advisor on Capitol Hill for three members of Congress. 

Kate Kendell, Esq. (Panelist)
Executive Director
National Center for Lesbian Rights

Kate Kendell is the executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), a legal organization committed to advancing the civil and human rights of LGBT people and their families through litigation, public policy advocacy and public education. Previously, she served as the first staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Utah. As the primary spokesperson for NCLR, she has appeared on CNN and Good Morning America and in hundreds of other media outlets. 

Malcolm Lazin (Panelist)
50th Anniversary Celebration

Malcolm Lazin is the chair of the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the LGBT Civil Rights Movement, the founder of LGBT History Month and the executive director of Equality Forum. Formerly a federal prosecutor, Lazin received the U.S. Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award and served as the chair of the Pennsylvania Crime Commission. He is the executive producer of three award-winning documentaries: “JIM IN BOLD,”  “Saint of 9/11" and “Gay Pioneers.” Among other honors, Lazin received the National Education Association’s 2005 Creative Leadership in Human Rights Award.

Stacey Long Simmons, Esq. (Panelist)
Director of Public Policy & Government Affairs
National Lesbian & Gay Task Force

Stacey Long Simmons is the director of public policy & government affairs of the National Lesbian & Gay Task Force. She works to advance LGBT equality through a progressive social-change agenda that includes ending discrimination in employment, housing, health care and education; expanding marriage equality; and pursuing protections from violence or hatred. She is active in numerous civic and community groups and served as the past chair of the DC Commission for Women.

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