Past Speakers

2022

May:  Eric Shepard, the new Artistic Director and Conductor of the Gay Men’s Chorus.

Video of Eric Shepard’s presentation via YouTube.

April:  Dave Miglin, a member of the Broadlawns medical center board and recently completed his mission of visiting every incorporated city/town in the state of Iowa. He’s also involved in Iowa Stage Theatre Company.

Video of Dave Miglin’s presentation via YouTube.

March:  Mark A. Babcock, who sang with Leonard Bernstein and Robert Shaw, and performed at Carnegie Hall and the New York Philharmonic, will speak about playing the carillon at Des Moines’ St Paul’s Episcopal Church.  See the September 6, 2021, Des Moines Register Article, “Meet the man who plays the church bells that ring through downtown Des Moines.”  

Video of Professor Babcock’s presentation via YouTube.

February:  Edward Kelly had an opinion article in the Des Moines Register on September 5, 2021, “My journey from anti-gay activist to LGBTQ ally.”

Audio and video coming soon.

January:  Dr. Loren A. Olson, M.D., an award-winning author of the book Finally Out and new book to be released in 2022, No More Neckties.

Video of Dr. Olson’s presentation via YouTube.

2021

December:  Most Rev. William M. Joensen, Ph.D., the 10th bishop of the Diocese of Des Moines.

Video of Bishop Joensen’s presentation via YouTube.


November

  • John Schmacker – DSM Magazine LGBTQ Legacy Leader 2021 Honoree.
  • Steve Karlin – Anchor and Reporter for KCCI Channel 8, Des Moines, in an extremely candid social media post opened up about his struggle with depression, which affects approximately 16.1 million adults in the U.S.

Video of John Schmacker’s and Steve Karlin’s presentations via YouTube.


October: Jeffrey Rufus Byrd – a performance and video artist, shared his journey and insights with the First Friday Breakfast Club. After listening to Jeff for 40 minutes, one quickly realizes why he has been exhibited in major cities across the U.S. and in Canada, Finland, Germany, Switzerland, Poland, Columbia, Mexico, Italy, China, Cuba, and the U.K. (October)

Video of Jeffrey Rufus Byrd’s presentation via YouTube


September: Edith C. Crawford – Volunteer and Board Member for the Greater Iowa Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. Edith was a caregiver to her mother who suffered and passed with Alzheimer’s, her sister diagnosed with Dementia, and now her brother who is suffering with Dementia.  Edith is a retired Department of Defense employee.  She served as Secretary, Accounting Technician and Auditor.  Edith also served as the EEO Counselor and Mediator, emphasizing Alternative Dispute Resolution for the Department of Defense. She has also provided services to the Elderly through the following organizations:  Home Instead Senior Care, Des Moines; Hospice of Central Iowa, Des Moines; Eastern Nebraska Office of the Aging, Omaha. (September)

Video of Edit Crawford’s presentation via YouTube


August: Ian Lawrence-Tourhino – Director of the American Institute of Bisexuality and heads amBi, a growing network of socially-focused bi communities. As an activist, he is particularly interested in mutual support networks as a health and human rights intervention for bi people. In 2014, he was branded “the new face of bisexuality” by the New York Times, when, after an interview, they put his picture on the cover of their magazine. (August)

Video of Ian Lawrence-Tourinho’s presentation via YouTube


July

  • Kevin Newbury a theatre, opera and film director based in New York City. Kevin’s work focuses on issues of community, empathy and social justice, with a particular focus on our shared LGBTQAI+ history and education. After extensive research into The Lavender Scare and this neglected period in American history, he developed a new opera, FELLOW TRAVELERS based on that learning and around Thomas Mallon’s book of the same name. (July)
  • 2020 – 2021 Scholarship Presentation

Video of Kevin Newbury’s presentation and 2020-2021 Scholarship Presentation via YouTube


June:  Reverend James A. Conrad, Jr. – Pastor of Towne View Baptist Church in Kennesaw, Georgia, tells the story of his congregation’s acceptance of a same sex couple and the church’s expulsion from the Southern Baptist Convention. (June)

Video of Reverend Conrad’s presentation via YouTube


May:  Peter Montgomery – Senior Fellow, People for the American Way.  Peter Montgomery has studied the Religious Right movement and its right-wing political allies for more than two decades. He has written extensively about marriage equality, religious liberty, and other conflicts at the intersection of religion, politics and LGBT issues. He has been cited as an expert in national publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and The New Yorker, and has appeared on national broadcast outlets including MSNBC and National Public Radio. (May)

Video of Peter Montgomery’s presentation via YouTube


April:  Chris Godfrey – former Iowa Workers’ Compensation Commissioner (April)

Video of Chris Godfrey’s presentation via YouTube.


March:  Dr. Virginia “Ginger” Campbell – hosts podcasts Graying Rainbows (Coming Out Later in Life) and Brain Science.  (March)

Video of Dr. Campbell’s presentation via YouTube


February:  Brian Bond – Executive Director, PFLAG, https://pflag.org/Brian K. Bond is a former Obama Administration official and LGBTQ advocate with an extensive background in constituency outreach and coalition bridge-building. Brian most recently served as the Coalitions Director for the Climate Action Campaign in Washington D.C., working to protect clean air and promote action to limit climate change. Prior to that, he was the Deputy CEO for the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (February)

Video of Brian Bond’s presentation via YouTube.


January:   Eric Marcus – Making Gay History author and podcaster, https://makinggayhistory.com/  Mr. Marcus is the author of a dozen books, including two editions of Making Gay History (the original 1992 edition is entitled Making History), Why Suicide?, and Breaking the Surface, the #1 New York Times bestselling autobiography of Olympic diving champion Greg Louganis. Eric is also the co-producer of Those Who Were There, a podcast drawn from the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies. And he is the founder and chair of the Stonewall 50 Consortium. Learn more about Eric in this NBC News profile. (January)

Video of Eric Marcus’ presentation via YouTube.

2020

Romen Borsellino – writer, executive producer, and the Co-creator of Freeform’s Kal Penn Approves This Message (December)

Video of Romen Borsellino’s presentation via YouTube.


Jane Clementi – as co-founder the Tyler Clementi Foundation she wants to make sure that our society learns the consequences of discrimination and bullying, as she learned all too personally through the loss of her son. A native of New Jersey and devoted mother of three sons, Jane speaks passionately to parents and community leaders about the need to not merely “accept” or “tolerate” children who come out as LGBT, but to embrace them as wondrous creations of God. Jane speaks on the need for parents of LGBT children to come out and speak openly of the love they have for their children, and in doing so each one of us can impact the world around us and create accepting environments. https://tylerclementi.org/ (November)

Video of Jane Clementi’s presentation via YouTube.


Hon. Rob Sand – State of Iowa Auditor.  Mr. Sand oversees three divisions within his office:  the Administrative Division, the Financial Audit Division, and the Performance Investigation Division.  (October)

Video of Rob Sand’s presentation via YouTube.


Ambassador Luis C. deBaca (Retired) – former head of the U.S. State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons during the Obama Administration (September)

Video of Ambassador deBaca’s presentation via YouTube.


Tim Thompson – ManKind Project GTBQ Gateway New Warrior Training Adventures, https://mankindpride.mkpusa.org/ (August)

Video of Tim Thompson’s presentation via YouTube.


Dr. Ryan Wise – Dean of Education, Drake University (June)

2019 – 2020 Scholarship Presentation

Video of Dr. Ryan Wise’s presentation via YouTube.


Hon. Mark W. Bennett – Ret U.S. District Judge and Director, Institute for Justice Reform & Innovation, Drake University Law School (May)

Video of Hon. Mark W. Bennett’s presentation via YouTube.


Ted Corrigan – CEO and General Manager, Des Moines Waterworks – Operation During Global Pandemic (April)

Video of Ted Corrigan’s presentation via YouTube.


Troy Price – Former Chair of the Iowa Democratic Party (March)

Courtney Rayes – Executive Director, One Iowa, https://oneiowa.org/ (February)

Senator Claire Celsi – State of Iowa Legislator (January)

Click here for the audio of some of the past speakers prior to 2020

Speaker Recommendations:  If you have a recommendation for a speaker for a future First Friday Breakfast Club meeting please email to info@ffbciowa.org, providing information about the potential speaker, and contact information for them.  Your contact information would be appreciated as well. 

Volunteer To Be A Speaker:  If you would liked to volunteer to be a speaker, please send an email to info@ffbciowa.org with your name, contact information, and the topic of your presentation.