1995 Family Portrait

1995 Family Portrait jpg

The picture you see on this page was taken on Saturday, October 28, 1995 on the steps of the Erie County Courthouse. The portrait was taken by Jay Pees of Impact Photography in Warren, PA and was open to all lesbigay people and our friends, families and supporters. A copy was buried in the Erie PA Bicentennial Time Capsule in 1996, which will be opened again in 2095.


Front (Ground Level): Micheal A. Miller [1], Michael K. Mahler [2]
First Step (Starting Behind Flag): Terry Dollivar [3], Frank Dollivar[4], Paula J. King [5], Stephan D. Mahler [6], Anne Bretz [7] Second Step Up:Patricia Rae Sharrer [8], John King [9], Conrad/"Connie"[10], Cherie [11]
Third Step Up: Georgi Ann Rice [12], Larry LeVasseur [13], Dave Mulholland [14], Kimberley Heidler [15], Jeremy R. Snyder [16]
Fourth Step Up: Anonymous [17], David A Wood [18], Deb Spilko [19], Eric Hetz [20]
Fifth Step Up: Dr. Lucinda Ann Marsh [21] and daughters JoEllen [22] and Mollie [23], Sally Meiser [24], Kel [25], Kelly Lowe [26], John Golden [27]
Back (Top Step): Christopher Sargent [28], Greg Valiga [29], Jeffrey D. Hill [30], Mark R. Ricker [31], Larry Sawdy [32]

About the People in the Picture...

Micheal Alan Miller is active with Erie Gay News and has worked with Bridges and other groups. He and Michael Mahler were handfasted/married on June 18, 1994 at the Unitarian-Universalist Congregation of Erie.

Michael Kenton Mahler is one of the editors of the Erie Gay Community Newsletter. He has been active with Bridges, LGLV, Menspace and, um, most groups at one time or another. He became the first voluntarily & publicly out lesbigay person in Erie County when he was on WSEE-TV News in April of 1992. He came out of the broom closet as a Pagan on the radio and in the Erie Daily Times in late 1995.

Terry Dollivar is an artist, a writer, and an advocate for the elderly, disabled and homeless.

Frank Dollivar was in Gen. Patton's 3rd Army.

Paula King is an artist for EGN.

Stephan Mahler is the younger brother of Michael Mahler (and proud of it) and is currently in school learning to be a chef.

Anne Bretz is the wife of Carl Bretz, the proud mother of Michael and Stephan Mahler, and also of Susan Pellitieri of Toledo, OH.

Patricia Rae Sharrer organized social gatherings for women, which planted the seeds for Womynspace.

John King is the husband of Paula.

Conrad is bisexual, Wiccan, nudist, vegetarian and a Drag Queen. snap! Call me Connie!

Cherie has been a coordinator for Closet Culture.

Larry LeVasseur is active with Menspace and LGLV. He was one of the principal organizers of the lesbigay float that was in the Erie Bicentennial Parade. The float was built, vandalized and rebuilt at his house.

Dave Mulholland is active with Trigon, Menspace, and LGLV.

Jeremy Snyder is the co-founder and active secretary of Closet Culture.

David Wood is active with LGLV and Menspace.

Deb Spilko is active with Erie Gay News and an environmentalist.

Eric Hetz is an active member and former coordinator and treasurer of Closet Culture and a friend of Identity.

Dr. Lucinda Marsh became Erie's first voluntarily out lesbian parent when she appeared on 2 parts of a 3-part special WSEE-TV 35 did in December of 1992. She spoke and was shown with her daughter JoEllen. She has been participated with Womynspace and was active with the Lesbian Moms' Group.

Sally Meiser has been active in Bridges and LGLV and remains the welcoming contact person for Womynspace. She has been a participant in sex education and diversity panels at local universities. She was a bus organizer for the 1993 Lesbigay March on Washington and was interviewed on TV. She was a core creator of the lesbigay float for the Bicentennial parade.

Kel is a former coordinator for Womynspace and was the artist who originally designed the Bridges/Erie Gay News logo.

Kelly Lowe is a member of Closet Culture.

John Golden is Assistant Professor of Economics at Allegheny who teaches the Lesbian/Gay History Course in the College's Concentration in Lesbian & Gay Studies. He is also a member of the Steering Committee for the Committee in Support of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual People at Allegheny.

Christopher Sargent is active with LGLV; he spearheaded a collection which raised over $500 for a former Erie resident who was the victim of a hate crime in Pittsburgh. Christopher is the father of Micah and the partner of Greg Valiga.

Greg Valiga is active with Bridges, LGLV, Erie Gay News, is on the Friends from the Heart Advisory Board, and was active with the defunct AIDS Council. He was spokesman for the lesbigay float that was in the Erie Bicentennial Parade and is pictured next to his significant other, Christopher.

Jeffrey Hill is active with LGLV; he hosted the first LGLV Pre-Election Wine and Cheese Party in the spring of 1995 that drew 6 political candidates from Erie County.

Mark Ricker is active with Closet Culture.

Larry Sawdy is active with LGLV.

Thanks to all who came out in the drizzling rain to make their faces known to future generations who 200 years from now may be curious as to Erie's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered and supportive straight heritage.

Major Donors - Thanks!

Cleis Press

Drenched Fur

Karpel Group

Persad Center

Greater Erie Alliance for Equality (GEAE)

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