"When President Obama posthumously awarded Harvey Milk the Medal of Freedom in 2009, he praised his leadership and courage in running for office. Today, we honor Harvey Milk's legacy in these ten outstanding public servants, who will surely inspire the next generation of public servants," said Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President.
The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White house to feature groups of Americans – individuals, businesses and organizations – who are doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities.
To watch this event live, visit www.whitehouse.gov/live at 3:00 pm ET on Wednesday, May 22nd. To learn more about the White House Champions of Change program and nominate a Champion, visit www.whitehouse.gov/champions.
Minnesota State Representative
South Minneapolis, MN
Representative Karen Clark was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives in 1980, making her the longest serving openly gay or lesbian state legislator in the country. She represents three inner city neighborhoods in South Minneapolis, the lowest income district in the state. Representative Clark is an advocate for low income, Indigenous American Indian and community of color constituents, including many new Americans. A former public health nurse, current college instructor and co-founder of the Women's Environmental Institute, some of Representative Clark's major legislative accomplishments include chief authoring and passing worker and consumer right-to-know toxic exposure laws, affordable housing and homelessness initiatives, youth and dislocated worker job training strategies and numerous human rights, environmental justice and anti-discrimination protections. Recently, Representative Clark authored and helped pass the 2013 Minnesota Freedom to Marry bill with bi-partisan support.