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Gay Activist Corey Johnson Running for NYC Council

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Former OutQ host and current New York City community board chair Corey Johnson announced Friday that he is OFFICIALLY running for city council.

The 29-year-old hinted at his candidacy earlier in the week when he registered a campaign committee to assume the seat of term-limited Council Speaker Christine Quinn. The openly-lesbian politician is considered to be the front-runner in next year’s mayoral election.

Johnson originally made headlines when he became the nation’s FIRST ‘out’ varsity football captain in 2000. Then in 2003, the athlete became one of the FIRST on-air personalities on the nation’s first 24/7 LGBT broadcaster–OutQ. Now, the Chelsea gayborhood resident is New York City’s youngest community board chairman.

Johnson tells OutQ News that his city council bid has been “a long time coming,” considering he’s devoted his entire adult life to both public service and activism in New York.

JOHNSON: Everything that I’ve done over these past 10 years has been rooted in trying to make the West Side a better place, a more vibrant place, and fighting for people’s ability to participate in their neighborhood in an active, grassroots way. And that’s the type of councilmember I want to be.

The self-described progressive adds that he’s mainly focusing on issues that affect his West Side community like affordable housing, land use and job creation, while also maintaining his fight for equality.

The Advocate notes that Johnson is one of FOUR LGBT people running to win Council Speaker Quinn’s seat next year, including a civil rights lawyer and a fellow community board chairman. But Johnson says he DOESN’T think their sexual orientations will be an issue in the race, or as he refers to it, the “marathon.”

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Written by Xorje Olivares

April 9, 2012 at 8:45 AM

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