Massachusetts Youth Pride Timeline



Lesbian and gay student groups begin to form at area colleges. The Boston University Homophile Committee was the first university-recognized student homophile organization in Boston, established on December 4, 1969. The area-wide Student Homophile League (SHL) has its first meeting at MIT after a student places an announcement in the MIT newspaper, The Tech. The group forms to coordinate activities of student homophile organizations, to encourage other student homophile organizations, and to provide a place where members and non-members could meet and socialize outside of a bar setting. SHL News provides information about activities and events, legal and political issues, and VD testing. The group ended in 1972.

Read the newsletter in PDF: Page 1 Page 2 Page 3


First Liberation dance is held by the Student Homophile League (SHL) at the Free University at Harvard in Lawrence Hall, an abandoned Harvard building scheduled for demolition. The dance is attended by 400-500 people. Later the building burned down forcing SHL to seek a new venue for their second dance.


Dances are also sponsored around this time by organizations like the Homophile Union of Boston and the Boston chapter of Daughters of Bilitis.


First (unofficial) gay Pride in Boston features seminars and a "gay-in" at the weekly rock concert on Cambridge Common. Flyers with the slogan "Love Is All You Need" are handed out by the Homophile Coordinating Council, a collaboration of Daughters of Bilitis, Student Homophile League, Homophile Union of Boston, Council on Religion and the Homosexual, and Gay Liberation Front. A speech by Huey Newton, the Minister of Information for the Black Panther Party, on working with lesbians and gay men is also handed out.


High School Gays United (HSGU) forms in Boston to bring together "all Homosexual high school students, and gay people under 18 years of age, female and male." The group forms to give "homosexuals under the age of 18 a way to socialize with people their own ages, ... and most of all to give them the security they need and the assurance that there ARE others like themselves who are fighting the same battles."

Read the newsletter in PDF: Page 1

Gaining Momentum


Larry Anderson, black transsexual and member of Boston's first gay and lesbian youth group, Project Lambda, appears on the cover of the Spring issue of Fag Rag.


Project Lambda (Boston's Gay Youth Advocacy Center), is established in Boston to assist gay and lesbian youth to advocate for services. Funded by a grant from the City of Boston's Youth Activities Commission, the group meets at the Charles Street Unitarian Universalist Church. Young adult staff includes Larry Anderson, Stephanie Byrd, Brian Goodrich, Linda Graham, Ian Johnson, Lynn Rosen, and Ted Sanger. The group ends in 1976 after losing funding from the City.

Click on image to see a readable version


The Committee for Gay Youth (CGY) is founded to revive Project Lambda as a "watchdog for the needs of the often neglected Boston gay youth," and to provide a place for gay youth and young adults to meet as an alternative to bars. The group meets at the Arlington St. Church. George Smith is appointed youth liaison to the adult-run group.

Click on image to see a readable version


Growing Up Gay is published by Youth Liberation Press in Ann Arbor Michigan. The publication includes an article entitled, "Lack of Support from Adult Gays Makes Life Difficult in Boston." Interviews with Project Lambda members are featured. The youth interviewed criticize Boston's adult gay community's focus on issues such as Anita Bryant and Susan Saxe, and their lack of support for local gay youth.


The Committee for Gay Youth (CGY) attends the March on Washington and marches in Boston's Gay and Lesbian Pride celebration.

Click on image to see a readable version

BAGLY and Beyond


After disputes with the adult leadership of the Committee for Gay Youth (CGY), the youths leave to form the Boston Area Gay and Lesbian Youth (BAGLY). It is the first youth run organization in Boston. Its office at 128a Tremont St. is funded by youth sponsored fundraisers. BAGLY continues today as the second oldest continuously running youth organization in the country.


The nation's first prom by and for GLBT youth is sponsored by BAGLY. More than 100 youth attend.


BAGLY (Boston Alliance of Gay and Lesbian Youth) and GALLYNS (Gay and Lesbian Liberated Youth of the North Shore) collaborate on a survey of LGBT youth. Results of the survey are published in a feature article in the July 20 issue of GCN.

Click on image to see a readable version


High School students at Brookline High School write a Gay Rights Amendment for their school handbook that is approved by the school committee. It states, "it is now illegal for anyone (student, teacher, administrator) to be discriminated against on the basis of sexual preference…"


Project 10 East is founded at Cambridge Ringe and Latin High School as the first public school based support group for gay and lesbian students in Massachusetts.


The nation's first official gay/straight alliance (GSA) is formed in Concord, Massachusetts (at the private Concord Academy) by students and by teacher Kevin Jennings, a founder of the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN).


The first public school gay/straight alliance was started at Newton South High School (Newton Centre, Massachusetts) by teacher Robert Parlin.

The Massachusetts Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth and the Student Rights Bill


The first Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth in the country is founded in Massachusetts to address issues such as gay and lesbian youth suicide, high school drop outs, homelessness and drug use. Youths testify at the first ever public hearings on GLBT youth.


Massachusetts passes the first legislation in the country banning discrimination against gay and lesbian students in public high schools. The Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Student Rights Law also ensures the same support to high school gay/straight alliances that is provided to other student groups or clubs. Passage of the law is due to the consolidated efforts of students across Massachusetts. The State Board of Education votes to adopt the Governor's Commission recommendations to train teachers and staff in anti-gay violence and suicide prevention, to create gay/straight alliances, and school-based counseling for family members of gay and lesbian students.

Read the Student Rights Bill: Page 1; Page 2

Click on image to see a readable version


First state funding is awarded to BAGLY to support its programming and to serve as lead agency for funding support to the GLBT youth group network of Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Youth Pride


Boston's first Gay/Straight Youth Pride march is organized by the Governor's Commission and Gay/Straight alliances.

Read the Governor's Proclamation (PDF)

See the 1995 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's second Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 1996 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's third Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 1997 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's fourth Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 1998 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's fifth Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 1999 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's sixth Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 2000 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's seventh Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 2001 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Boston's eighth Gay/Straight Youth Pride


Boston's ninth Gay/Straight Youth Pride


Boston's tenth Gay/Straight Youth Pride

See the 2004 Youth Pride Flyer


Eleventh Massachusetts Youth Pride is held in Boston.

See the 2005 Youth Pride Flyer


Because of Youth Pride funding cuts by Governor Mitt Romney, Friends of GLBT Youth is formed as a 501(c)3 to raise money for the annual Youth Pride celebration and to support GLBT youth in Massachusetts.


Twelfth Massachusetts Youth Pride is held in Boston.

See the 2006 Youth Pride Flyer (PDF)


Governor Mitt Romney dismantles the Governor's Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth; in response, the General Court of Massachusetts establishes the Massachusetts Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth on July 1st, 2006.

    "This Commission is an independent agency of the Commonwealth and has a mandate to investigate the use of resources from both the public and private sectors to enhance and improve the ability of state agencies to provide services that protect and support the health and safety of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) youth in the schools and communities of Massachusetts…"


Thirteenth Massachusetts Youth Pride is held in Boston.


Fourteenth Massachusetts Youth Pride is held in Boston.