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Nominations open for Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame

June 18, 2013|By Mick Swasko, @swasko | RedEye

Off the heels of announcing its inaugural inductees, Chicago’s Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame is now looking to the public for additional honorees.

The non-profit group--which seeks to honor individuals and organizations that have furthered the cause of LGBT sports--was established this year, and it is accepting nominations for inductees until July 1. So far, according to founder and executive director Bill Gubrud, the organization has received about a dozen nominations for inductees. Once the window for nominations is closed, Gubrud said the seven member board of directors will vote on who to accept. 

The nomination form can be found here. 

Last week, the organization announced the first round of honorees, which will be inducted into the Hall of Fame Aug. 3. They include:

>> Glenn Burke -- A former MLB player who was the first professional athlete to come out after his career in the 1980s.

>> Christina Kahrl -- An ESPN baseball writer and LGBT activist who came out in 2003 as transsexual.

>> Renee Richards -- A former professional tennis player who underwent sexual reassignment surgery in 1975. Her fight to continue playing as a woman is considered a landmark case in transsexual rights.

>> Martina Navratilova -- A former tennis player, coach and current LGBT advocate.

>> Greg Louganis -- A back-to-back Olympic diving gold medalist.

>> Billie Jean King -- The women’s tennis great broke barriers gender barriers during her career, and has advocated for LGBT rights.

>> Jason Collins -- The NBA player was the first active male athlete to come out during his career this year.

>> LZ Granderson -- The ESPN columnist came out in a column for CNN in 2012.

>> Dr. Tom Waddell -- Founded the Gay Olympics in 1982.

>> Orlando Cruz -- The first boxer to announce he is gay.

>> Andrew Goldstein -- A former professional Lacrosse player that came out during his career.

>> Ben Cohen -- A straight English Rugby player who has fought to combat homophobia in sports.

>> Jerry Pritikin -- A Chicago photographer known for his images of the LGBT community. He was known as “The Bleacher Preacher” at Wrigley Field.

The hall will also induct the Chicago Cubs, Outsports.com, the International Gay Rodeo Association and Anheuser-Busch organizations at the ceremony. Tickets to the Aug. 3 ceremony will be on sale this week at gayandlesbiansports.com

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