President Obama makes History

Today President Obama made history by announcing that he fully supports marriage equality for  same-sex couples. This announcement makes him the first President in history to openly support marriage equality. This also comes a day after North Carolina passes an amendment to ban same-sex marriage in their state.

I have to tell you, last night when I heard North Carolina passed the bill to ban same-sex marriage I felt so defeated. I don’t know what I was expecting. Wait I do know what I was expecting. I was expecting them to be fair and kind citizens and vote for equality. I mean is that so much to ask for? I read in CNN that the supporters of the bill were going to celebrate their victory by serving wedding cake. WEDDING CAKE! What is wrong with these people? Where do they come from…well, North Carolina apparently.

It just makes me sick. I was upset about the defeat in North Carolina all night. I thought about all of the places in the world I wanted to move to, simply to get out of this country. I was listing off all of the countries that allow same-sex marriage and thinking about which would be the best new home for me. As I was sharing my disappointment with anyone that would listen, I was quickly reminded that 42% of the people in North Carolina voted against the amendment and that we are making progress.

Then today President Obama came out to support gay marriage and I felt hopeful. I felt like we are making a difference and  that marriage equality is closer than we think. I hope this announcement energizes and motivates our supporters to get out and volunteer, donate, and speak up for marriage equality. Use your voice and join our President in coming out for marriage equality. And please join me and saying a big Thank You to our President.

Thank you Mr. President. I knew you would come around!



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A Partnership is Formed

It is my pleasure to announce the official partnership between Andrew’s Round Table and Minnesotans United for All Families. The partnership was kicked off today with a Press Conference at the Capitol and an official press release.

This is a partnership that has been in the works for sometime now and it is thrilling to see it finally be announced and to get to share the news with everyone. As you know our mission at ART is foster and encourage conversations around the issue of marriage equality and we are hoping by partnering with MU we will be able to spread this message even further.

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In our Hearts Always

A year ago today the unimaginable happened and a family was changed forever.

Let us all take a moment to remember the sacrifice the Wilfahrt’s and all of the other families of our fallen soldiers have made on behalf of our country and our freedoms. What a remarkable man and soldier Andrew Wilfahrt was. He gave his life fighting for rights and freedoms he himself could not receive.

I never knew Andrew, but his light and love shines bright through his parents Jeff and Lori. What a remarkable family and an incredible inspiration for the rest of us. It is the dedication of people like Jeff and Lori Wilfahrt that makes me believe this country will see full equality for all GLBT couples.

Let us remember their sacrifice as we continue to work for that equality.


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It’s never too late for a “Change of Heart”

With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, we at Andrew’s Round Table wanted to do something to celebrate love and acceptance for all couples, so we started the “Change of Heart” campaign.

On February 14, we will be hand-delivering valentine’s to Representative Kurt Zellers and Senator David Senjem, the two responsible for putting the Marriage Amendment on the ballot in November. Since it is their bill, we are asking them to pull the amendment off of the ballot.

The Valentine’s will read:
Dear Representative Kurt Zellers and Senator David Senjem,
Happy Valentine’s Day! We hope you and your family enjoy a day filled with love and happiness. Our wish this year is that you honor love and embrace acceptance for all Minnesota couples. We urge you to have a change of heart and pull the Marriage Amendment off of the November ballot.
Andrew’s Round Table

We are giving everyone the opportunity to send the same Valentine’s Day card, by simply going to our website and adding your name.

We are also giving people the opportunity to join us in hand delivering the cards at the Capitol. If you would like to join us, and meet the people behind Andrew’s Round Table, meet us in the Capitol Rotunda at 10:00 a.m. on February 14.

If you haven’t already, please go to our website and sign up. It takes seconds and it will have a real impact on the people behind Amendment. Please help us in spreading the word and forwarding the event to all of your friends and family.

Thank you so much!



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A blogger is supposed to blog

I received a very honest and loving email today from someone I look up to very dearly. The email was short and simple and said “Nicole, A blogger is supposed to blog….” and I responded quietly to myself with a chuckle and thought “no sh**!”

A blogger is supposed to blog and I am not sure what my problem has been. I think for a while there I was feeling overwhelmed with my day-to-day life and didn’t feel like I had the strength to do anything else. Then the holiday season came and I took some time off work, thinking it would give me the perfect break to write. Unfortunately, I ended up being just as busy not working as I am working; with presents to buy and friends and family to catch up with. Then there was a short period of time after the holidays and right before I had to go back to work, where I didn’t have anything to do, which would be the perfect time to write – right?

It would have been the perfect time to write, except for I was feeling uninspired. I was feeling uninspired! I hate even saying those words because I want this blog to be an inspiration to everyone reading, and how do you inspire if you are uninspired. You can’t.

And it was the last part of this email that really knocked the wind out of me: “I’m going to quit checking for your new stuff pretty soon.”

This statement is so powerful because the author of this email is probably one of my biggest fans (or at least, that’s what I like to think) and it meant there are people who continue to check my site.

So, to all my loyal fans out there – I am sorry and I promise you I will no longer give you the silent treatment. I have a lot of great things to write about, so expect more to come SOON!

And to you-know-who-you-are: Thank you! And I love you too! (emoticons allowed!!!)






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A Mother’s Holiday Wish

Happy Holidays Everyone!

Today I came across a beautiful letter and it moved me so much that is broke me from my two month silent period; which I am sorry about, by the way. The letter was written by Randi Reitan, a local activist I had the pleasure of meeting at our first Randy Potts event. Randi is a lovely woman and has done so much for our movement on behalf of her gay son Jacob.

When I read her letter today it moved me to tears. I love how authentic and honest she is; reading it I could feel the love pouring out of her. It really resonated with me because I feel the same love and agony for my siblings. If there was one gift I could give my brother and sister right now it would be the equality they deserve. As I was thinking about this today, I was thinking it is not even the wedding and marriage that I want for them; although weddings for them would be lovely. What I really want is a society that accepts them for who they are. I don’t even want their sexual orientation or their right to marry be an issue. I just wish we didn’t have to have the discussion. I just want them to be treated fairly and be done with it already!

I may not be able to give my brother and sister the equality they deserve, but I can give them my love and support; and best of all, my time and my voice!

Happy Holidays from my family to yours!


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ART meet Randy, Randy meet ART

After months of planning, dozens of email exchanges, a handful of meetings, and much anticipation, Andrew’s Round Table’s debut event kicked off tonight with a meet and greet. The night started with picking up Randy at the airport. As we were anxiously awaiting his arrival I realized he had no idea what we looked like. We, of course, knew exactly what he looked like; although he is taller and even more adorable in person.

From the airport we went straight to The Wilde Roast on St. Anthony Main where Randy met the rest of the people behind Andrew’s Round Table. The night included lots of talking and laughing; and overall was a huge success. It was so great to finally meet Randy; he is so wonderful and happy to be here. I can’t wait to hear him speak in the morning. I asked him how the writing process was for the speech he is going to be giving. He said the speech was a joy to write and beyond that he wouldn’t give us any other details. He didn’t want to spoil it for us, so he literally wouldn’t say anything else about it; which makes me even more eager to hear it. I hope you can all make it to at least one of the events over the next four days, and if you can, bring someone that might benefit from hearing Randy’s message.

All of the event information is on the events tab, or you can go to Andrew’s Round Table for more details. I will be at every event, and I hope to see you there!


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Why I love Randy Roberts Potts

I couldn’t be more excited for this weekend. On Saturday, Randy Roberts Potts arrives from Dallas, Texas to begin his 4 day speaking tour in Minnesota. If you don’t know who Randy is, you better get to know him because he is someone worth knowing. Randy is the grandson of the televangelist Oral Roberts. Randy also happens to be gay.

I can’t imagine what it was like for Randy to finally come out to his family. The strength and courage it must have taken for him to finally be open and honest with the people he loved the most. Even when he knew deep down that by telling his loved ones the truth about his sexuality, he risked losing them forever. It was so heart breaking for me to hear that his worst fear came true.

Randy has overcome so much and still finds the strength to speak out and be himself. Randy really does have a beautiful story. It is a story of acceptance and hope. It is a story that will hopefully change minds and hearts and make us all remember to love one another for who we are and not who we love.

It is because of this story that I love Randy Roberts Potts.

Randy will be speaking throughout Minnesota Sunday, Oct. 23rd through Wednesday, Oct. 26th. All of the locations, dates, and times are listed on my events page. I hope you are all able to make it to at least one of the events, as they are free and open to everyone. I will be at all of the events, so if you do come please stop by and introduce yourself.

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The Big Gay Race

Saturday morning I got up early and headed down to beautiful St. Anthony Main to participate in Minnesotans United for All Families Big Gay Race, and what a big race it was. It felt so good to see such a huge crowd of supporters, among them some friends of mine that walked the race with me. It was a gorgeous fall morning and to be surrounded by so much love and support made me feel invincible. Here are some of the pictures I took from the day, enjoy!



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Happy National Coming Out Day!

Randy Roberts Potts will be coming to Minnesota in 2 weeks. I am so excited for his visit that I find myself checking out his Facebook page every time I log on and today he wrote the words “OUT” on his profile picture. I don’t know what it is about this picture, but I have thought about it all day. What better way to make a statement on National Coming Out Day than to post the word “OUT” on your profile picture. It made me wish I could post the same thing on my picture.

I find the concept of “coming out” to be quite odd. I have to imagine years and years from now the idea of “coming out” won’t even mean anything because there will be no stigma around being gay. People will just be able to live their lives and be who they are without having to worry of rejection from their loved ones or public scrutiny. I just can’t wait until we are at that point and I hope that I am still alive to see it.

I don’t think anyone can truly understand how hard and terrifying it can be for a person to come out of the closet until they go through it themselves. It’s funny because I like to think I have been through three major coming out’s: my brother’s, my sister’s, and my own. I know I am not gay but I do feel like I had my own coming out moment. When my brother came out, I was so young I didn’t know what the big deal was. When my sister came out we almost didn’t take her seriously because we thought she was trying to be funny. It wasn’t until I finally came out and told my best friends that my brother and sister were gay when I realized how hard it can be. I found that once I did tell the people I was closest to and saw how supportive and loving they were, it became easier to tell the rest of the world. In fact, look at me now!

Not that I can give real advice on coming out, because I know what I went through does not come close to what people in the GLBT community go through; but if I were to give any advice it would be to first come out to someone you know loves you. Start with that person you feel safe with, a person you think will be supportive. I think you will find it gets easier to come out once you slowly build your support system. If you don’t have any one in your life you feel like would be OK with it, reach out to one of the many GLBT organizations out there. These organizations are a great resource and can be a great support system for those that don’t have one else where.

I like to think if a person truly loves you, I mean loves you unconditionally; it won’t matter to them who you love. Love is love; it’s that simple.

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