National LGBTQ Task Force mourns the death of visionary leader Jeff Montgomery
Washington DC, July 19, 2016—LGBTQ leader Jeff Montgomery died today in Detroit aged 63.
“Jeff Montgomery’s work leaves a lasting legacy and imprint on the LGBTQ movement in the United States and beyond. We are deeply saddened by the loss of this most precious friend,” said Sue Hyde, director of the Creating Change Conference. “Jeff attended many Creating Change Conferences, including the two held in Detroit in 1995 and 2008. He presented innumerable workshop sessions — training and educating our movement about anti-violence tactics and strategies, one of his great missions in life. Jeff lent his skills and wisdom to many in our movement, young and old, people of all races and classes, all folk who shared his abiding passions for LGBTQ freedom, justice and equity. He will be so missed by so many for so long. Rest in Peace and Power, Jeff.”
Jeff’s partner, Michael, was murdered in anti-gay hate crime in Detroit in the mid-1980s. Jeff coped with this devastating personal tragedy and turned his anger and frustration at the lack of police investigation of the murder into a strong and durable LGBTQ movement in his home state of Michigan. Jeff, with others, founded the Triangle Foundation in 1991, which focused its efforts on supporting victims of hate crimes. Jeff served as its executive director from the founding until 2007.
In 2010, the Triangle Foundation evolved into Equality Michigan, following a merger with Michigan Equality. Jeff being Jeff, he and Triangle expanded the work to include advocating for nondiscrimination laws and policies, taking Triangle’s energies and people to Lansing, the state capital, and then, to Washington DC. Jeff attended and participated in and organized his beloved Michiganders to march in Marches on Washington for LGBTQ people and their civil rights and dignity. Jeff also devoted his time and energy to ending police stings in cruising areas around Michigan. He staunchly advocated for sexual freedom for all.
To preserve and highlight the legacy of Jeff Montgomery’s incredible work, consider a donation to fund the documentary of his life, “America, You Kill Me” at http://www.jeffreymontgomery.org/.
Jorge Amaro: 213.842.7564
Mark Daley: 202.379.8318