New and Noteworthy

Friends, Colleagues, Allies,

 New Year’s is always a great time to reflect on our accomplishments, renew our resolve, and focus on what matters most for the path that lies ahead.  Despite the pandemic, 2021 will be remembered as a year of progress on glifaa’s objectives and for the LGBTQI+ community worldwide. 

Glifaa participated in a historical milestone as the Progress Flag was raised for the first time on the main flag pole outside the Harry S. Truman building, the board’s efforts helped to add several new countries to the list of those that will accredit LGBTQI+ spouses, the post of LGBTQI Special Envoy was once again filled, and non-binary gender identity was recognized on U.S. passports.  Glifaa’s lobbying helped bring about an expansion of benefits for those adopting or employing surrogacy and on an increase of gender affirming care for transgender employees. 

We know there’s still a long way to go in securing equity for the needs of all of our members and on DEIA in the Foreign Affairs community.  That’s why we look forward to building on our accomplishments in 2022.  The board is working to ensure durability on LGBTQI+ issues by incorporating our issues into the Department’s important strategic planning, and on engaging an ever-expanding list of partners throughout the Department and the Foreign Affairs community to advance our advocacy and priorities.  Our board was very pleased to re-start in-person social gatherings and the first in-person membership meeting last month.  Though we will pay close attention to Omicron’s path, we are working full-speed ahead to plan an in-person Pink Party in 2022.  Safety permitting, not only will we celebrate a return to personal gatherings, but we will also celebrate glifaa’s 30th anniversary – a true milestone.  2022 will indeed be another year of firsts for our community. 

In the spirit of celebrating what’s new, glifaa is also very proud to congratulate a long slate of out career and political LGBTQI+ ambassadors who were just confirmed by the Senate in December and will soon be arriving to lead their posts:

  • Michael Carpenter (OSCE)
  • Christopher Lamora (Cameroon)
  • Scott Miller (Switzerland and Lichtenstein)
  • Marc Ostfield (Paraguay)

We look forward to congratulating more out ambassador nominees when they are confirmed, especially women and those of color.

The glifaa board wishes you and yours a healthy, happy, and prosperous New Year.  Here’s to all the best for 2022!

Warm regards,

Mike Konstantino

President