(Keene, NH) Often referred to as a “living legend” in the AIDS world and the LGBT equality movement, Cleve Jones will be the guest speaker at the 20th anniversary celebration of AIDS Services for the Monadnock Region (ASMR) on Saturday, May 1 at Heberton Hall, Winter Street, Keene, NH.
As founder of the AIDS Memorial Quilt founder and historical consultant on the 2009 Oscar-winning film Milk, Jones was an integral part of early-80’s activism. Those efforts resulted in the beginning of the modern-day LGBT movement, led by Harvey Milk in San Francisco, and acknowledgment of the devastation caused by the AIDS pandemic which will soon reach the 30-year landmark.
Jones has long been a hero to ASMR. According to Susan MacNeil, ASMR Executive Director, “We’d brought Cleve to Keene State College for World AIDS Day in 2002 and 2005 and came to know him as an agency friend. When our Board decided to create the first housing in New Hampshire for people living with HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C, we honored Cleve by naming our house after him. Creation of The Cleve Jones Wellness House has been an uphill climb in the truest spirit of AIDS activism, but once GLAD (Gay & Lesbian Advocates and Defenders’ AIDS Law Project, www.glad.org, ) came on board as legal counsel the matter resolved shortly thereafter. After 63 contentious months ending in November 2009, we are now able to move forward with our vision.”
Most recently, Jones has been a community liaison for the national hotel workers union, UNITE HERE, which represents over 300,000 hospitality and manufacturing workers across North America. In this role, Jones collaborated with Californians Against Hate and the Courage Campaign to boycott Doug Manchester’s San Diego Hyatt Hotel in light of Manchester’s $125,000 to California’s Prop 8.
Prop 8 was passed in November 2008 and created a constitutional amendment in California defining marriage as between a man and a woman. New Hampshire is one of five states - Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont - that grants same-sex marriage.
Keene Mayor Dale Pregent will attend the anniversary celebration to read a proclamation in honor of the agency’s milestone. Dr. Carl DeMatteo, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, will be presented with a Founder’s Award. Also attending the event to honor the agency and Jones is Fred Karger, founder of the 501©4 nonprofit corporation Californians Against Hate and the first openly gay, independent Republication candidate to announce his run for the U.S. presidency. www.fredkarger.com
“An Evening With Cleve Jones” will be held at Heberton Hall, Winter Street, Keene, NH. Doors open at 7p, dinner and program 7:45, dancing 9-11. Cash bar. Tickets $35 each, $65 couple, table of 8 for $240. Purchase tickets online with VISA/MC at www.asmronline.org or by calling 603.357.6855. ASMR is supported in part by the Monadnock United Way, City of Keene, Broadway Cares and the generosity of individuals throughout the Monadnock Region.