1972-07-12

Delegate JIM FOSTER becomes the first openly Gay person to address a major American party convention at the 1972 Democratic National Convention.

Foster was an American LGBT rights and Democratic activist. He became active in the early Gay Rights movement when he moved to San Francisco following his undesirable discharge from the United States Army in 1959 for being homosexual. Foster co-founded  the Society for Individual Rights (SIR), an early homophile organization, in 1964. Dianne Feinstein credits SIR and the Gay vote with generating her margin of victory in her election to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1969. In the documentary When We Rise he is portrayed by Gay actor Denis O’Hare.

[Editor’s Note: I can’t seem to find any photo of Jim Foster anywhere, which is a very rare occurrence. If someone has an image of Mr. Foster I would really appreciate a copy. If you can help, please contact me at whtcranejournal@aol.com. Thank you. Bo]