Denver, September 23rd, 2013

AVER Public Affairs: 718 849-5665
President: Steve Loomis:
505-301-1737  Email:  sloomis@swcp.com


American Veterans For Equal Rights, America’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender veteran’s service organization, serving active service members and veterans since 1990, has elected Lieutenant Colonel Steve Loomis, US Army Ret., as president at its bi-yearly national convention in Denver.  LTC Loomis will lead the activist organization through the early post DADT era, focusing on equal benefits, advocacy, and equal treatment of all service members and veterans.

According to AVER President Loomis “With the successful repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, led principally by gay veterans, we must now turn to insuring fair and equal rights are extended to our active service members, that equal access to Veterans Administration is ensured, and that our transgender fellow service members can equally serve our country.  LGBT vets will continue to be at the front of the fight for equal rights to marry and for the passage of the Employment Non-discrimination Act.”

In addition to the election of LTC Loomis as President, the bi-yearly convention re-elected Julz Carey to continue her role as VP, Apolonio Munoz as Secretary, and past president Danny Ingram as Treasurer.

LTC Loomis enlisted in the U.S. Army, was commissioned an Infantry Lieutenant and served in Vietnam as a Platoon Leader in the 4th Infantry Division. Awarded two Bronze Stars, Purple Heart, and the Combat Infantry Badge, he returned to civilian life, joined the Army Reserves in Albuquerque in multiple Engineer command and staff positions .  He is a graduate of the University of New Mexico. He served with the 244th Engineer Battalion in Colorado, then as a Lieutenant Colonel he served as the Chief of Military Education for the U.S. Army Reserve. While an Inspector General, LTC Loomis conducted a ground breaking sexual harassment survey that included analysis of perceptions of gays just prior to the enactment of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. As the Chief, Engineer War Plans for III Corps following the death of North Korea’s Kim Il Song, he deployed to Korea to rewrite engineer plans for the defense of Korea.

When he was awarded a fourth Meritorious Service Medals, and was selected for promotion to Colonel in 1995 he was discovered to be gay. He was discharged just five days before he was eligible for his 20-year retirement, but won his retirement in Federal Court in 2005. LTC Loomis founded the New Mexico Chapter of the AVER. He has been interviewed on CBS 60 Minutes, spoken, and written extensively to support gays serving in the military.

“GLBT vets have served our country since the Revolutionary War”, LTC Loomis stated, “and now gladly do so openly and proudly and will continue to do so.  We honor those, straight and gay, who have worked to get us and our nation this far, and recognize we have much work remaining.”

American Veterans For Equal Rights (AVER), is the nation’s all-volunteer Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender veterans’ service organization, advocating equality and equal benefits in our armed services for all our patriotic veterans.

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