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Gay and Lesbian Archives of the Pacific Northwest Oral Histories
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Oral history interview with Holly Hart, by Winter Drews and James Loos

Holly Hart is the owner of Old Wives Tales restaurant on East Burnside in Portland. She was born in Chicago in 1947 and grew up there before moving to Portland to attend Reed College in 1964, where she was highly active in protests against the Vietnamese War. Her identity as a lesbian became apparent around this time, and following graduation at Reed, she entered a period of intensive gay rights activism. Suffering burnout, she regressed from these activities before returning to them upon attending the law school at the University of California Berkeley from 1972 to 1975. Some time around 1978, Hart was on a panel commissioned by Oregon Governor Bob Straub to compile a report for the "Task Force on Sexual Preference". Upon the failure of the Mt. Moving Café, which Hart frequented during its brief run, she started Old Wives Tales, with an emphasis on multi-ethnic vegetarian cuisine.

Hart, Holly

Oral history interview with Lee Coleman, by Joshua Fackrell and Katrina Griffiths [Transcript]

Transcript. Coleman discussed his involvement with (pro-gay) "Log Cabin Republicans" organization in CA and OR. Fight against measure 9. On "Right to Privacy" board. Became democrat after being outed as a John Kerry supporter. Advocates political involvement (as a democrat).

Coleman, Lee, 1931-

Oral history interview with Cindy Cumfer, by Erik Funkhouser and Tim Aguirre

Cindy Cumfer discusses her involvement with the lesbian and women's communities in Portland, Oregon; her work as a civil rights attorney, particularly in the area of lesbian adoption; the AIDS epidemic and how it bridge the divide between the gay and lesbian communities; and her involvement with the Unitarian Universalist Church.

Cumfer, Cynthia

Oral history interview with George Oberg, by Brian Aune and Heather Burmeister [Sound Recording 02]

Session 2. George Oberg lives in Vancouver, Washington. He was the first president of the Second Foundation, which was a gay rights organization during the 1970s. During the interview, he talks about the early gay rights movement as well as the AIDS crisis of the 1980s. He talks about how his partner died of AIDS.

Oberg, George

Oral history interview with Rupert Kinnard, by Marissa Gunning and Ellen Tobias [Sound Recording]

Session 1. Kinnard discusses a few different subjects that include the accident that left him a paraplegic, his experience and career in cartooning and graphic design, working for Just Out, his new venture The LifeCapsule Project, and his feelings on gay marriage.

Kinnard, Rupert, 1954-

Oral history interview with Renee LaChance, by Brontë Olson and Nicole Estey

This is interview of Renee LaChance was conducted by Brontё Olson and Nicole Estey for the Gay and Lesbian Archives of the Pacific Northwest as part of their senior capstone at Portland State University. LaChance worked with the queer newspaper The Cascade Voice, first selling advertising and writing and later as the editor for a period of time before founding Just Out newspaper with Jay Brown in 1983. The interview covers her involvement in the Gay Pride Festival, AIDS and ACT-UP, and Ballot Measures 9 and 13, as well as her experiences with running Just Out, her decision to sell, and her feelings about the path of the paper after its purchase by Marty Davis in 1998. It finishes with words of wisdom offered by LaChance for both the gay community and the general public on life and changing the future.

LaChance, Renee

Oral history interview with Reverend Susan Leo, by Jae Ann Atwood and Genevieve Blaettler

Leo speaks of her experiences as an out lesbian pastor in the United Church of Christ; her experiences in Nicaragua during the 1980s that led to her decision to attend a Presbyterian seminary; homophobia within the church; and social justice & activism. She also addresses the difficulty her mother had in accepting Leo's lesbianism.

Leo, Susan, 1951-

Oral history interview with Linda Rae Besant, by Emma Bagley and Emily Kahnert [Sound Recording 01]

Session 1. Besant discusses her involvement in the earliest incarnation of the vocal group The Dyketones; coming out in her early thirties (to herself & to her family); her commitment to Women In the Wilderness (aka Keep Listening); her life with her partner, Marcia; and the community at the Mountain Moving Cafe in the 1980s.

Besant, Linda

Oral history interview with Roey Thorpe, by Roxanne Michelle Holtman [Transcript]

Transcript. Thorpe discusses her tenure as Director of Basic Rights Oregon (2001-2006) and her subsequent role on staff at Planned Parenthood in Portland. Thorpe also discusses her youth in Columbia, SC, her coming-out process during the early 1980s, and the significant positions she has held in organizations dedicated to LGBT rights, non-profit community childcare, and at Empire State Pride Agenda (NY).

Thorpe, Rochella, 1962-

Oral history interview with April Lewis, by Tyler Brewington and Heaven Hartford [Sound Recording]

Session 1. In this interview, Lewis, shares some fascinating information about her family, her background in diversity training, her involvement with Portland’s lesbian softball league, and her experience of living through the AIDS crisis of the 1980s. Now over twenty-five years sober, April speaks candidly about her identity as a recovering person, twelve-step programs, addiction and abuse within LGBT communities, and the importance of addiction recovery communities.

Lewis, April D.

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