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Jeanne Córdova: From nun to LGBTQ+ pioneer

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Jeanne Córdova: From nun to LGBTQ+ pioneer

American activist
How Jeanne Córdova turned the voice of homosexual girls

Activist Jeanne Córdova

© USC

Raised in a strict Catholic dwelling, Jeanne Córdova joined the order as a lady and have become a nun. But the American quickly started to query her religion and her sexuality – and determined to pursue a profession as a lesbian activist.

Jeanne Córdova was born on July 18, 1948 in Bremerhaven. He was the eldest of twelve youngsters of a Mexican father and an Irish-American mom. After graduating from highschool in Puente, California, he entered the Immaculate Heart of Mary Monastery in 1966. But quickly she started to query her sexuality and her religion. He left the monastery in 1968 and obtained a grasp’s diploma in social work from the University of California on the age of twenty-two.

But he started his actual work within the space of ​​homosexual rights because the president of a neighborhood group Los Angeles of “Daughters of Bilitis”. “I made a decision from the begin to pursue a profession as knowledgeable gay,” she as soon as mentioned. by lesbians. In 1971 he additionally opened the primary homosexual heart in Los Angeles.

Soon after, Córdova additionally served on the board of the Los Angeles Gay Community Services Center and wrote and edited the Los Angeles Free Press. A set of his columns was printed in his 1974 e book “Sexism – It’s A Nasty Affair.” When the homosexual motion was on the rise, he turned president of the Stonewall Democratic Club and led a statewide marketing campaign in California to overtly elect homosexual delegates to the 1980 Democratic National Convention.

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Jeanne Córdova based the “gay enterprise index”

He based the “Community Yellow Pages,” which introduced collectively a whole lot of homosexual and lesbian companies in Southern California right into a “homosexual enterprise listing” and was printed with a circulation of 100,000 a 12 months. It was supposed to offer option to shoppers who wished firms that accommodated them with out discrimination. “I really feel extra snug with a homosexual parking zone plumber than with the alternative intercourse,” Córdova reportedly informed the New York Times in 1989. “I haven’t got to go and conceal in the home and conceal the indicators that I’m a lesbian.”

In 1999 he bought his enterprise e book once more, moved to Mexico for a couple of years and, collectively along with his spouse Lynn Harris Ballen, based the “Palapa Society of Todos Santos”, a non-profit group for financial justice. He later printed his award-winning memoir “When We Were Outlaws; A Memoir of Love & Revolution.” Even as an activist and entrepreneur, Jeanne continued to jot down articles, columns and items of journalism, and printed articles on her private weblog.

Córdova made her most cancers public in 2015

Córdova and his spouse Ballen exchanged vows in entrance of household and pals in a partnership ceremony in 1995 earlier than they have been formally married in 2013, after same-sex marriage turned authorized in California.

Córdova’s religious Catholic mother and father discover it troublesome for his or her daughter to return out. As her sister Lu later mentioned, she had been separated from the household for a number of years. It was solely later that he reconciled along with his mother and father, who tried however didn’t carry him again to the religion.

In an open letter posted on her web site in September 2015, Córdova mentioned: “I’ve had most cancers since 2008. Colon most cancers.” The first 4 years he spent it, “as I typically did with bodily sickness or problem.” In 2013 the illness returned and first metastasized to the lungs and later to the cerebellum. He endured a number of surgical procedures, radiation and chemotherapy earlier than passing away on January 10, 2016 at his dwelling in Los Feliz. He was 67 years previous.

Sources: jeannecordova.com; “Los Angeles Times”; ONE Archives at USC Libraries

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