Detailed Timelines of LGBTQA-Specific Events 1969 - 2010


LGBTQA Student Groups of Penn State

(1971, Apr) USG Approves Charter of "The Other Vision: Homophiles of Penn State (HOPS)"
(1984, Apr) HOPS Transitions into Off-Campus Gay/Lesbian Switchboard

HOPS transitions into off-campus Gay/Lesbian Switchboard of State College

(1985, Feb) USG Approves Charter for Gay Student Services (GSS)

Gay Student Services is Established

(1986, Oct) GSS Transitions into Lesbian and Gay Student Alliance (LGSA)
(1990, Dec) LGSA Approves Addition of "Bisexual" to Group Name
(1992, Mar) Coalition of LGBT Graduate Students Founded
(1992, Oct) New Group "Allies" Pledges Support to LGBSA

Advertisements for Gay/Lesbian Switchboard and Gay Student Services
Allies group established in 1992

(1995, Jan) LGBSA Mixed About Adding "Transgender" to Group

Transgender discussions at Penn State aren't yet progressive in 1995

(1996 - 1998?) LGBSA Becomes Lambda Student Alliance (LSA)
(2001, Apr) Undertones is Founded to Provide Support for LGBTA Minorities

Undertones forms in 2001

(2003, May) Student Groups Merge: LSA and Allies

In 2003, Lambda Student Alliance and Allies merge

(2005, Oct) Out in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (oSTEM) is Founded
(2006, Jan) Allies Transitions into SpeakOut, a Political Action Group
(2006, Jan) Axis is Founded as an Undergraduate Social Group
(2006, Sep) Dickinson Law Students Bring Outlaws Group to University Park Campus
(2010, Mar) Gay Fraternity (Delta Lambda Phi) added to Interfraternity Council

Gay progressive fraternity added to Interfraternity council in 2010
Gay Power

State Issued Legislation for LGBTQA Communities

Governor's Executive Order 1975-5
Governor's Executive Order 1975-5 (As Amended in 1978)
Pennsylvania Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Laws

Executive Order 1975-5
Revised in 1976

(1975) First Gay Rights Ordinance
(1975, Apr) Gov. Milton Shapp Issues Executive Order 1975-5 (Committing his administration to gay rights)
(1976) Gov. Milton Shapp Proclaims Gay Pride Week

HR282 in 1976, Proclaiming Gay Pride Week is Contrary to wishes of the Legislature
Discussion in the Pennsylvania Bulletin for Gay Pride Week in 1976

(1976, Jun) Gov. Shapp Amends 1975-5, Creates Council for Sexual Minorities
(1976, Jun) Gov. Milton Shapp Proclaims First Pennsylvania Gay Pride Week
(1976, Jun) PA House of Representatives Objects to Gov. Shapp's Proclamation
(1979) Gov. Dick Thornburgh Proclaims Gay Pride Week

Newspaper Article highlighting Gay Pride Week in 1979

(1979, Jun) PA House of Representatives Objects to Gov. Thornburgh's Proclamation

Discussion in the Pennsylvania Bulletin that Governor's Proclamation is against Legislature's wishes

(1979, Jun) Gov. Dick Thornburgh Proclaims Affirmation for Gay Pride Week
(1984, Feb) Gov. Thornburgh Issues Executive Order 1984-1
(1988, Jan) Gov. Robert Casey Amends Executive Order 1984-1 with 1988-1


LGBTQA Legal Battles in Happy Valley

HOPS 1971 - 1973
LGBTQA Legal Battles in Happy Valley
(1971, May) Student Affairs Suspends HOPS
(1971, Jun) HOPS is Rechartered by the GSA
(1971, Sep) Student Affairs Reaffirms Suspension of HOPS
(1972, Feb) HOPS Files Suit against Penn State
(1973, Jan) Out Of Court Settlement Grants Charter to HOPS

Carozza 1976

(1976, May) Anthony Carozza Denied Rehire at Penn State
(1976, Nov) Carozza Rehired at Penn State

Rene Portland 1980 - 2007

(1980) Joe Paterno Hires Rene Portland
Daily Collegian, June 11 and 13, 1980
(2005) Harris vs. Portland, Curley, and Penn State [1]
(1980, Jun) Joe Paterno Hires Rene Portland to Coach Lady Lions Basketball
(1986, Jun) Rene Portland Says "No Drinking, Drugs, or Lesbians"
(2005, Oct) Harris vs. Portland, Curley, and Penn State
(2006, Apr) Penn State Fines Portland $10,000
(2007, Feb) Harris Claim Settled
(2007, Mar) Rene Portland Resigns from Penn State

A Collegian article discusses Rene Portland being honored and protested as a Renaissance Award recipient in 2005

Non-Discrimination Lawsuit

Non-Discrimination Lawsuit--
(1990, Jun) LGSA Files Affirmative Action Complaint Against Penn State


Other Anti-LGBTQA Events in Happy Valley

Other Anti-LGBTQA Events in Happy Valley
(1988, Apr) Anti-Gay Posters Appear Around Campus
(1989) Conservative Independent Newspaper, "The Lionhearted" Founded
(1989, Mar) The Whitehead BITNET/NEWSNET Incident
(1995, Oct) Anti-Gay Posters Advertise "National Going Back Into the Closet Day"
(1997, Mar) USG Approves Charter for STRAIGHT Group
(1999, Mar) STRAIGHT Group to Disband for Lack of Membership Interest
(2005, Feb) Kovalchick's Letter to the Editor


Local Institutional Changes for LGBTQA Communities

Institutional Changes for LGBTQA Communities
(1984) Local Gay Bar "Chumley's" Opens
(1988, Oct) Campus Environment Team Recommends Committee on LGB Equity
(1991, Jan) Committee Appointed to Review Climate Experienced by Lesbians and Gay Men
(1991, May) Penn State Revises Non-Discrimination Policy

Perhaps the most important University response to harassment and discrimination comes from anecdotal evidence frequently referenced by Penn State faculty (but which is otherwise unavailable). In the early 1990's, University President Joab Thomas charged Faculty Senate with reviewing the University non-discrimination policy; reports suggest that after considerable research and efforts, the consensus was that inclusion of sexual orientation may not be a necessity. Then, nearing a vote among the Senate, a Penn State faculty vehemently spoke out against the LGBT community. Soon the vote came, and sexual orientation was added to the University non-discrimination policy by a vote of 93-12.

(1991, Oct) Commission on Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Equity Founded
(1993, Mar) State College Borough Adopts Fair Housing Ordinance
(1993, Aug) Liberal Independent Newspaper "Voices of Central Pennsylvania" Founded
(1994, Sep) LGBT Support Network Formalized
(1998, Aug) LGBTA Resource Room Opens in Grange Building
(2000, Jun) Transgender added to Commission's Name (CLGBTE)
(2001, Jan) LGBTA Student Resource Center Comes to Boucke Building
(2001, Nov) Director Hired for LGBTA Student Resource Center
(2005, Jan) Penn State Formalizes Domestic Partner Benefits
(2006, May) Penn State Revises Non-Discrimination Policy
(2007, Dec) State College Revises Anti-Discrimination Policy
(2009, Jul) Sexuality and Gender Studies Minor Formalized
(2010, Jan) Club Mezzanine Offers Sunday Nights to LGBT Communities


Other Major Events for LGBTQA Communities

Major Events for LGBTQA Communities
(1988, Apr) First Week Long Pride Celebration at Penn State
(2003, Mar) First Annual One in Ten Film Festival
(2005, Oct) Student Stonewall Coalition Leads Grassroots Social Justice for LGBTQA Communities
(2007, Apr) First Pride Week Award at Penn State
(2008, Apr) State College Mayor Presides Over Gay Commitment Ceremony


References and Sources

  1. Attributed to: Nathan A. Smith. The Daily Collegian. Accessed 18 February 2009.
Milton Shapp
Sexual Minority Council
1988 Ordinance
Joseph Acanfora
Rene Portland
Training Rules
Jennifer Harris