2020 Endorsements

Georgia Equality Releases Endorsements for
2020 Legislative, Municipal, & Judicial Races

The board of Georgia Equality is pleased to announce our endorsements in these critical 2020 legislative primary races.

“Each of these candidates believes in fairness and safety for LGBTQ Georgians, and if elected will carry those beliefs with them into their office” said Jeff Graham, executive director of Georgia Equality.

In a period in which many people seeking elected office are supportive of the LGBTQ community, the Georgia Equality Board of Directors will issue an endorsement for a candidate who we feel is best placed to advance our policy agenda.  The lack of an endorsement should not necessarily be viewed as a negative reflection of a particular candidate’s views on LGBTQ issues in general.

Additional Voter Information from our community partners:
Vote Pro-Choice
Informed Georgians for Justice

Republican Ballot


Senate District 3
Cody Smith 

“I am a proud, openly gay candidate that will protect the personal liberties afforded to all citizens of the United States of America by the US Constitution.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Cody’s website, www.cody4gasenate.com


Democratic Ballot

Senate District 39
Nikema Williams (I)

“Since I arrived in Atlanta, I’ve stood shoulder to shoulder with Georgia’s LGBTQ community. As the Senator for District 39, I not only am a constant vote for LGBTQ rights, I have also led the charge to ensure we are centering the LGBT community invert bill we discuss. Ensuring that District 39 continues to be the progressive standard bearer for the sate is my number one priority.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Nikema’s website, nikemaforsenate.com.


Senate District 41
Kim Jackson 

“I have demonstrated a life-time of support for the LGBTQ+ family. From the pulpit to the bullhorn, to press conferences, I have spoken about and demanded protections for all people. As a lesbian, I have a personal investment in making sure that Georgia has positive LGBTQ+ policies. I will read bills and interpret proposed bills with an eye towards how the bills will impact our community. I am also ready to introduce and support bills that uniquely impact the LGBTQ+ community, for example:
a bill that bans conversion therapy;
a bill that includes sexuality and gender expression as protected classes for state employees and all Georgians;
a bill that extends the trial period for providing greater access to PREP.
Finally, I believe that representation matters. It’s time — it’s past time that we have out LGBTQ+ representation on the Senate side of the General Assembly. I am ready to start the journey towards queering the Senate.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Kim’s website, http://www.kimforgeorgia.com


Senate District 48
Michelle Au

“Taking care of people is my life’s work, and the well-being and health of this community will always be my focus. This includes underrepresented members of my community that often don’t feel they have a voice in legislature. I aim to be a legislator who will listen to the concerns of the LGBTQ community, advocate tenaciously for the best interests of all those I represent, and continue to report back on the process we’ve made.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Michelle’s website, www.auforga.com.


House District 35
Kyle Rinaudo

“The truth is this: Our community in Acworth and Kennesaw is welcoming, kind, diverse, and growing. We’ve changed a lot in the past few decades. And we know that, in 2020, we deserve better representation than politicians who would vote to restrict women’s rights, discriminate against the LGBTQ+ community, and cut funding from public schools. At the same time, we’ve had the same State Representative for the past 15 years—and he’s led dangerous efforts to encourage LGBT discrimination, criminalize women’s right to choose, limit access to healthcare, and so much more. I believe that’s wrong, and that’s why I decided to challenge him in 2018. After coming up short in 2018—which is not a great feeling, I’ll admit—my team and I decided to jump in again this year, do the work we need to win, and build a progressive coalition because these issues continue to be urgent for my family, my community, and my generation.

As I continue to talk with voters every day and share our message, I point to a line I stated in my 2018 announcement video that resonates with voters across our community’s political spectrum: “All people—no matter how you look, who you love, or where you come from—deserve equal rights under the Constitution.” This message of not just equality, but equity for our community’s many diverse people, populations, and families, is a goal I continue to be committed to. It’s a breath of fresh air from our current representatives, and I look forward to working hard in January 2021 to engage LGBT Georgians and make discrimination, once and for all, a relic of the past. That’s what the 21st Century looks like, and it’s reason for us all to be optimistic.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Kyle’s website, www.kylerinaudo.com.


House District 39
Erica Thomas (I)

“I have always been mindful of LGBTQ issues and views. My sister is a lesbian and my brother is gay, I have always been supportive of their decision. The votes as the voice of the LGBTQ community are just as important as any one else.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Erica’s website, www.electericathomas.com.


House District 56
Josh McNair 

 “As a Gay man and native Georgian, I am clear about what our challenges are and there is a guarantee that I will fight every day for our community. I know first hand the discrimination many in our community face daily whether it be in their professional or personal lives. Every citizen in the state of Georgia, no matter who they love, or how they identify themselves deserves to live in a state where they are able to work, live, and thrive without fear of persecution, hate or ridicule. I am committed to this fight because it has literally been the fight of my entire life – to ensure every one has the opportunity to live their full life.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Josh’s website, www.joshuamcnair.com.


House District 58
Park Cannon (I)  

“From the rainbow crosswalk in Midtown to The Marquette on the West Side and affinity groups in Southwest Atlanta, District 58 neighbors are active members of the LGBTQ+ community. Representative Park Cannon stands out as the only openly queer legislator in Georgia, and is a proud 3rd generation Atlantan living in the Old Fourth Ward.

Park has sponsored legislation commending LGBTQ organizations, schools, and leaders as well as passed 2 bills increasing access to Pre-exposure prophylaxis for Georgians at risk of living with HIV. The office of Rep. Cannon has an LGBTQ liaison, attends events within the Trans and gender non-conforming community, and is a founding member of the Equality Caucus at the state Capitol. As the chair of the Health Working Group for the Atlanta LGBTQ Advisory Board to Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and appointee to the Working Group on HOPWA for City Council President Felicia Moore, Representative Cannon looks forward to bringing more solutions for LGBTQ progress in 2020.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Park’s website, www.parkcannon58.com


House District 80
Matthew Wilson (I)  

“I’ve been honored to serve as one of five openly LGBTQ legislators, representing our
community that has no geographic boundaries in Georgia. In the last two years we have made great progress by increasing state resources to stop the HIV epidemic in Georgia, passing LGBTQ-inclusive hate-crimes legislation, and advancing legislation to finally ban conversion therapy in Georgia. Because of our increased representation and advocacy, for the first time in nearly a decade, the legislature turned away from so-called “religious freedom” efforts to discriminate against our community. We are making an impact but we have so much more work to do. With your help, I look forward to continue working with my fellow LGBTQ legislators to lead the fight under the Gold Dome for LGBTQ equality.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Matt’s website, matthewforgeorgia.com


House District 83
Becky Evans (I)

“As the daughter of a civil rights activist and Biblical scholar, I believe that we must stand up for the dignity and human rights of all people, including those in the LGBTQIA+ community. In my run for office, I have made a point of seeking out the perspectives of LGBTQIA+ people.  My website was designed and is maintained by a same sex millenial couple who self identify as queer. I’ve worked hard to keep a diverse set of voices at the table before and during my first term and both my 2018 and 2020 campaigns. Through my work in my community, I have learned the importance of reaching across differences to work for the benefit of all people. I bring my passion for social justice to the Gold Dome, to not only fight regressive religious freedom bills, but also to sponsor legislation that will protect the LGBTQIA+ community, especially in the areas of healthcare access. I’m incredibly passionate about working to decriminalize HIV status, improve needle exchange programs, more adequately fund HIV prevention programs for our youth, do more outreach to at-risk LGBTQ youth especially around the issue of homelessness and bullying, and fight to secure the family rights of ALL Georgia families.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Becky’s website, www.beckyevans.com.


House District 84
Renitta Shannon (I)  

“I am a proud Black Queer Woman, and having lived at the intersection of these identities, it’s that experience that has given me the perspective to know how to protect and advance equity for all of these communities simultaneously. When it comes to policy making, you want somebody who understands that it is necessary to make sure that nobody is left behind in the fight for true equality and equity.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Renitta’s website, https://renittashannon.com

 


House District 85
Karla Drenner (I)  

-info coming soon

 

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Karla’s website.


House District 86
Michele Henson (I)

“I have always interacted with all residents in my district. I have always stood with PRIDE for those who have suffered discrimination, injustice, and marginalization. This certainly applies to the LGBT community. Their issue, interest, and positions are the same as mine. Opposition to the RFRA bill (I voted against it), stopping hate crimes, improved healthcare, and insurance coverage. I opposed the Erhart and Singleton bills from the past. I voted against the anti-gay marriage bill from years ago. I have always been a VOCAL advocate, backed up by votes, for the LGBT community. I am a strong supporter for civil and human rights.”

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Michele’s website, www.repmichelehenson86.com


House District 89
Bee Nguyen (I)

“I’ve been an ally to the LGBTQ+ community and have a record before I was elected to office. I was the campaign manager for Rep. Sam Park, our first openly gay man to be elected to the Georgia General Assembly. I have a voting record that illustrates my commitment to the LGBTQ+ community.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Bee’s website, beeforgeorgia.com


House District 91
Rhonda Taylor

“One of my main platforms is inclusion. I believe God loves everything He created because it is good. Therefore I love and do not judge and will fight side by side for the rights of every one regardless of their sexual preference. I believe in the person; the spirit of an individual, the heart moves me.”

 

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Rhonda’s website, www.rhondastaylor.com.


House District 99

Marvin Lim  

“As an LGBT person myself, I have already been successful in advocating for policies that protect and improve our community – from contributing (as a lobbyist and private citizen) to beating back Georgia bills that would allow the use of religion to discriminate against LGBT people, to assisting U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley in the advocacy against the FDA’s MSM blood donor ban. As both a candidate and State Rep, I will aim to push for even more policies that will serve this community.”

 

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Marvin’s website, www.marvinlimforga.com.


 

House District 101
Sam Park, (I)  

“As the first openly gay man elected to the Georgia State Legislature, I have introduced legislation to prohibit discrimination against the LGBTQ community in employment, housing, and public accomodations; helped defeat harmful legislation that would treat members of our community as second class citizens; and worked hard to ensure our State treats individuals living with HIV with the dignity and respect they deserve. As I have demonstrated my commitment to stand and fight for the equal dignity and rights of all who call Georgia home, I hope to receive the continued support of LGBTQ Georgians so that together we will continue the march for progress and justice.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Sam’s website, www.samforgeorgia.com


House District 163
Mac Sims  

“I have proven my dedication to this community over the years, first by helping set up the first LGBT advocacy in the Army at West Point in the wake of the repeal of DADT, and continuing today as a member of the Boards of Directors for our LGBT center. I put living my life authentically at the core of who I am and of my candidacy. As a State Representative, I will use my experience as a member of this community to be an advocate on behalf of LGBT people and work across the aisle to advance our issues’ cause.”

 

 

For more donation and volunteer information, please visit Mac’s website, macforga.com.


Cobb County Board of Commissioners, District 4
Monique Sheffield

“As an elected official, my responsibility, obligation, and duty is to represent and serve ALL residents of the district regardless of differences in ideology, politics, race, gender or sexuality. My values are steeped in fairness and equity for all people and those principles guide and shape my decision-making process and my decisions.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Monique’s website, electsheffield.com.


Dekalb County Board of Commissioners, District 1
Robert Patrick

“As Dekalb County Commissioner, I will be even more pro-active in working with organizations such as yours to lobby the Georgia General Assembly for nondiscrimination and the expansion of the hate crimes laws. I have a proven track record of supporting the LGBTQ community as Doraville Councilman. I will work to sponsor and support progressive and welcoming legislation at the county level. I believe every hard working, law abiding, and tax paying citizen should be treated fairly, respectfully and with dignity.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Robert’s website: www.voterobertpatrick.com


Dekalb County Board of Commissioners, District 6
Edward “Ted” Terry

“I will be a strong advocate and ally of LGBTQ voters, residents, and visitors in DeKalb County. Iwill push forward policies that will create a more inclusive and welcoming county for all. The work I started in Clarkston, moving progressive policies forward and passing them into law, I will continue to do at the county level.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Ted’s website: www.tedfordekalb.com


Fulton County Board of Commissioners, District 4
Natalie Hall

“I have always been supportive of the LGBTQ community even before being elected as your Fulton County Commissioner of District 4. As the Chief of Staff to the late Commissioner Joan Garner, I created support letters on behalf of Commissioner Garner for LGBTQ organizations and other support needs.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Natalie’s website: http://www.nataliewhall.com


Gwinnett County Commission Chairman
Curt Thompson  

“I am an out member of the LGBTQ community who has a track record of winning elections in Gwinnett and have done so as a longtime advocate and supporter of LGBTQ rights and issues. My election would make me the first openly LGBTQ County Commissioner Chair/County Executive in the state of Georgia representing almost 1,000,000 people in Georgia’s second largest county. I would make passing a strong inclusive non discrimination ordinance a top priority for our county and would work to expand LGBTQ visibility in our county.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Curt’s website: curtforgwinnett.com


Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners, District 3
Derrick Wilson

“I believe in being involved to make a change and giving the underprivileged an avenue to be heard. Every one should be treated fairly and given the opportunity to share their concerns, regardless of their race, religion, gender, or gender identity, sexual orientation, or social class status. I would leverage my position in the county to support the creation of a non-discriminatory policy.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Derrick’s website: www.wilson4gwinnett.com


Macon-Bibb County District Attorney
David Cooke

“I’m honored to be recognized by the premier group in Georgia dedicated to equality as a defender of rights for every Middle Georgia resident. As our District Attorney, I’m committed to ensuring equal protection under the law and equal access to justice for every Georgia family.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit David’s website: davidcookeforda.com


Nonpartisan Ballot

Macon-Bibb County Board of Commissioners, District 5
Seth Clark

“I have spent my entire adult life working on issues of fairness and equality. Whether it was working for the rights of the Homeless in Atlanta and Macon, advocating for greater accessto technical college through my work at the legislature, or working with a local workinggroup to support the proposal and passage of a non-discrimnation ordinance, this has beenmy life’s work, and will be no matter the outcome of the election.Further, I have the strong support of LGBTQ leaders in the community. Jim Crisp, a gay manand former director if Theatre Macon is a mentor of mine. He has been a seminal figure in my life from a very early age; I grew up doing theatre under his direction.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Seth’s website: www.clarkformacon.com


Chatham County Superior Court Judge (seat being vacated by Judge Bass)
Lisa Colbert

“I believe that everyone who appears before a judge should be treated with dignity and respect and their rights should be protected no matter who they love. As a Superior Court judge, I will ensure that all persons are treated fairly and respectfully.”

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Lisa’s website: www.colbertforjudge.com


Dekalb County Superior Court Judge (seat being vacated by Judge Seeliger)
Aaron Chausmer

“The role of a DeKalb Superior Court Judge – along with its possible legal and practical effect – can have a significant impact on the lives of the LGBT community, especially in family law and adoption proceedings. I will be a fair judge who will protect the rights of all and who will ensure that everyone is treated fairly, equally, and with dignity before the law and in my courtroom.”

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Aaron’s website: aaronchausmerforjudge.com 


Fulton County Superior Court Judge (seat being vacated by Judge Russell)
Melynee Leftridge Harris

“I hope to earn the support, prayers and vote of Georgia Equality and every Fulton County resident. As a Spelman College alumna, Georgetown Law graduate and 13 year veteran of the Fulton County Magistrate Court bench, I’ll work to protect the personal liberties of every Fulton County resident. As our next Superior Court Judge, I’ll also fight to protect our health and working family issues and fully and enthusiastically support inclusion and equality in all things.”

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Melynee’s website: www.melyneeleftridgeharris.com


Fulton County Superior Court Judge
Rebecca Rieder (I)

“I treat all people with dignity and respect, listen to the evidence, and decide and rule in a timely fashion.  I am fair, impartial and patient with litigants and attorneys, while holding all responsible within the confines of the law.  I never  forget my actions have an impact on real people – the people of Fulton County.  I am honored to serve with an unwavering commitment to justice for all, and to continue to serve for another 4 years. I ask for your SUPPORT and your VOTE.”

 

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Rebecca’s website: www.keepjudgerieder.com


Gwinnett County Superior Court Judge
Kathy Schrader (I)

“I am known for being a trauma-informed jurist that shows all lawyers and litigants before her respect, dignity, equality and fairness, I have a proven record of innovative and efficient calendars, creative strategies for all individuals, families in crisis, imposing tough sentences for violent offenders or implementing alternative sentences for non-violent offenders.  I have stood steadfast in the face of adversity and  no other candidate race has worked harder for Gwinnett or harder for protect Justice for All.”

 

 

 

 

 

For donation and volunteer information, please visit Kathy’s website: www.judgekathyschrader.com


 

 denotes an openly LGBTQ incumbent or candidate.