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Lieutenant Alberto Jova, and several other representatives from the Gay & Lesbian Liaison Unit (GLLU) of the Metropolitan Police Department were all present to accept the Richard L. Schlegel National Legion of Honor Award on Tuesday, April 17, at the American University’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Ally Resource Center’s 10th annual awards ceremony.
”The Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit’s commitment to working to address and prevent hate crimes, as well as provide education and outreach about anti-violence has been outstanding and is why it is receiving the Richard L. Schlegel National Legion of Honor Award for Visionary Leaders,” organizers said in a statement about the event.
Schlegel, an AU alumnus and pioneering gay activist, garnered national attention in the early ’60s when he challenged his termination from the Department of the Army in the Supreme Court.
The GLLU was recognized as the ”Visionary Leader” for its efforts against violence, as well as other contributions to the gay community. In addition to the GLLU, students, faculty and alumni, the Richard L. Schlegel award also lauded pioneer gay activist Franklin E. Kameny with a ”Lifetime Achievement” award, and recognized Patrick Lukingbeal as the ”Emerging Activist” award recipient.
Lukingbeal is currently studying for a master’s degree in student affairs administration and higher education at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. He is also credited for his anti-violence advocacy at Texas A&M.
The awardees will receive a plaque and $500, according to Sara Bendoraitis, director of AU’s GLBT Resource Center.