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Judy Shepard draws from personal tragedy to promote a greater understanding of LGBTQ issues and empower audiences to embrace human dignity and diversity through outreach and advocacy in their own communities.
In 1998, Judy lost her son Matthew to a murder motivated by anti-gay hate that shocked and captivated the nation. Turning tragedy into a crusade for justice, this leading voice in the LGBTQ rights movement has since established The Matthew Shepard Foundation to carry on her son’s legacy. Later, she spearheaded The Matthew Shepard Act, which expanded the federal hate-crime law to include crimes based on gender and sexual orientation.
The author of the best-seller, The Meaning of Matthew, Judy offers an intimate look at how her life and the entire fight for equal rights changed when her son was killed. With a name now synonymous with activism and equal rights, Judy and her husband Dennis leave an indelible imprint with their words, compassion and raw honesty as they urge audiences to make their schools and communities safer for everyone, regardless of race, sex, religion, or gender identity and/or expression.
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