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Majority Leader Toni Atkins honors San Diego LGBT heroes

SACRAMENTO -- Assembly Majority Leader Toni Atkins this week honored two leaders of the San Diego LGBT community, Bridget Wilson and Jeri Dilno, during Pride Month festivities at the State Capitol.

The event included a special ceremony on the floor of the Assembly chambers sponsored by the Legislative LGBT Caucus.

“Recently we have had many LGBT milestones to celebrate and full equality seems possible in the near future,” Atkins said. “This is all the more reason to honor the pioneers of our movement who bravely and tirelessly worked on behalf of our community, long before there was broad public acceptance of LGBT rights. Jeri Dilno and Bridget Wilson personify that spirit of courage and leadership.”

In 1970, Dilno helped organize Philadelphia’s first Gay Pride March and she has worked on behalf of the LGBT community ever since. After relocating to San Diego, she also organized that city’s first Pride march, served as the first woman executive director of The Center, and was editor of the Gay and Lesbian Times. She was also one of the first LGBT veterans to have her dishonorable discharge based on sexual orientation reversed.

An Army Reserve veteran, Wilson has been an advocate for LGBT service members and veterans for more than four decades. She practices military law, civil litigation and employment law at The Dean Law Group. Wilson also has a long history of serving LGBT community organizations, including Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, the San Diego AIDS Foundation, the ACLU and San Diego Pride.