20th and 21st Century LGBT History

What was happening in our country and around the world when our seven founding members were laying the plans for a new gay organization here in the Old Pueblo?  They gathered in 1994, several months before officially launching the Men's Social Network in March, 1995. 

If there is anything you see, have a question about or feel that something needs to be added, please contact Thom Goodrich, MSN H Club Coordinator @  520-305-6976.

·                    1994                                

            Unregistered Cohabitation recognition:

                         Passed and Came into effectIsrael (without adoption, without step-adoption until 2005

                         Anti-discrimination legislationSouth Africa (sexual orientation, interim constitution)   

             Decriminalisation of homosexualityBermudaGermany, UK Crown Dependency of Isle of Man and Serbia

                          Equalization of age of consent                          

             PartialUK reduces the age of consent for homosexual men to 18;                           

                          Homosexuality no longer an illnessAmerican Medical Association                           

                          LGBT Organizations foundedNational Coalition for Gay and Lesbian Equality (South Africa)        

             Other : Canada grants refugee status to homosexuals fearing for their well-being in their native country; Toonen v. Australia decided by UN Human Rights Committee; fear of persecution due to sexual orientation becomes grounds for asylum in the United States.                  

                          Deborah Batts became the first openly gay or lesbian federal judge; she was appointed to the U.S. District Court in New York. Gay Parade was held in Japan. (8.1994)

                       Susan Stryker's essay "My Words to Victor Frankenstein Above the Village of Chamounix" became the first article to be published in a peer-reviewed academic journal by an openly transgender author.

·                    1995

·                    Men’s Social Network – first monthly Potluck, Social and General Meeting held in Tucson, March, 1995.

       Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

      Passed and Came into effect: Sweden (with adoption, replaced with same-sex marriage in Apr 2009)

       Anti-discrimination legislation: Canada (sexual orientation)

       Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Albania and Moldova

       AIDS Related: Triple combination therapy of drugs such as 3TC, AZT and ddC shown to be effective in treatingHIV, the virus responsible for AIDS

       Other : The Human Rights Campaign drops the word "Fund" from their title and broadens their mission to promote "an America where gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people are ensured equality and embraced as full members of the American family at home, at work and in every community;"

        LGBT Organizations founded: Gay Advice Darlington/Durham was founded by local gay and bisexual men, and has developed into a Charity that work with and for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Community of County Durham and Darlington.    

Rachel Maddow became the first openly gay or lesbian American to win an international Rhodes scholarship.

·                    1996

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Iceland (with step-adoption, without joint adoption until 2006, replaced with same-sex marriage in 2010)

Unregistered Cohabitation recognition:

Passed and Came into effect: Hungary (replaced with registered partnerships in 2009)

Restriction of LGBT partnership rights: USA, (federal, see DOMA)

Equalization of age of consent: Burkina Faso

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Romania, Macedonia, Macau

The first lesbian wedding on television occurred, held for fictional characters Carol (played by Jane Sibbett) and Susan (played by Jessica Hecht) on the TV show "Friends".

·                    1997

Anti-discrimination legislation: Fiji (sexual orientation, constitution) and South Africa (sexual orientation, constitution)

Equalization of age of consent: Russia

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Ecuador, Venezuela and the Australian state of Tasmania

Other : Israeli President Ezer Weizman compares homosexuality to alcoholism in front of high school students.  The UK extends immigration rights to same-sex couples akin to marriage; Ellen DeGeneres came out as a lesbian, one of the first celebrities to do so.   Furthermore, later that year her character Ellen Morgan came out as a lesbian on the TV show "Ellen", making Ellen DeGeneres the first openly lesbian actress to play an openly lesbian character on television.   Patria Jiménez became the first openly gay person to win a position in the Mexican Congress, doing so for the Party of the Democratic Revolution.   The Gay and Lesbian Medical Associationlaunched the Journal of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association, the world's first peer-reviewed, multi-disciplinary journal dedicated to LGBT health.

·                    1998

Anti-discrimination legislation: Ecuador (sexual orientation, constitution), Ireland (sexual orientation) and the Canadian province of Alberta

Significant LGBT Murders: Rita Hester, Matthew Shepard

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, South Africa(retroactive to 1994), Southern Cyprus and Tajikistan

Equalization of age of consent: Croatia and Latvia

End to ban on gay people in the military: Romania, South Africa

Gender identity was added to the mission of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays after a vote at their annual meeting in San Francisco.  Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays is the first national LGBT organization to officially adopt a transgender-inclusion policy for its work.

Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay or lesbian non-incumbent ever elected to Congress, and the first open lesbian ever elected to Congress, winning Wisconsin's 2nd congressional district seat over Josephine Musser.

Dana International became the first transsexual to win the Eurovision Song Contest, representing Israel with the song "Diva".

Robert Halford comes out as being the first openly gay heavy metal musician.

The first bisexual pride flag was unveiled on 5 December 1998.

Julie Hesmondhalgh first began to play Hayley Anne Patterson, British TV’s first transgender character.

·                    1999

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: US State of California (without adoption, without step adoption until 2001, same-sex marriage in Jun 2008-Nov 2008)

Passed and Came into effect: France

Equalization of age of consent: Finland (without adoption)

LGBT Organizations founded: "Queer Youth Alliance" (UK)

Other: Israel’s supreme court recognizes a lesbian partner as another legal mother of her partner’s biological son;South Africa grants spousal immigration benefits to same-sex partners.

Steven Greenberg publicly came out as gay in an article in the Israeli newspaper Maariv. As he has a rabbinic ordination from the Orthodox rabbinical seminary of Yeshiva University (RIETS), he is generally described as the first openly gay Orthodox Jewish rabbi.  However, some Orthodox Jews, including many rabbis, dispute his being an Orthodox rabbi.

In 1999, the first Celebrate Bisexuality Day was organized by Michael Page, Gigi Raven Wilbur, and Wendy Curry.

21st century



·                    2000

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: US State of Vermont

Anti-discrimination legislation: South Africa (discrimination, hate speech, harassment; see PEPUDA)

Revoking of discrimination legislation: UK subdivision ofScotland (Section 28)

End to ban on gay people in the military: United Kingdom. See also: Sexual orientation and military service and Stonewall

Equalization of age of consent: Belarus, Israel, United Kingdom(passed eff. 2001)

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Azerbaijan and Georgia

Other: In Germany the Bundestag officially apologizes to gays and lesbians persecuted under the Nazi regime, and for "harm done to homosexual citizens up to 1969"; Israel recognizes same-sex relations for immigration purposes for a foreign partner of an Israeli resident.

The Transgender Pride flag was first shown, at a pride parade inPhoenix, Arizona.

·                    2001

Same-sex marriages laws:

Came into effect: The Netherlands (with joint adoption)

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Came into effect: Germany (without joint adoption until Oct 2004, then with step-adoption)

Passed: Finland (without joint adoption until May 2009, then with step-adoption)

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Portugal (without joint adoption) (replaced with marriage 2009)

Came into effect: Swiss canton of Geneva (without joint adoption)

Anti-discrimination legislation: US states of Rhode Island (private sector, gender identity) and Maryland (private sector, sexual orientation)

Equalization of age of consent: Albania, Estonia and Liechtenstein, United Kingdom.

Repeal of Sodomy laws: US state of Arizona

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: the rest of the United Kingdom's territories

Homosexuality no longer an illness: China

Marches and Prides: Protesters disrupt the first Pride march in the Serbian city of Belgrade

The first memorial in the United States honoring LGBT veterans was dedicated in Desert Memorial Park, Cathedral City, California.

Helene Faasen and Anne-Marie Thus, from the Netherlands, became the first two women to legally marry.

·                    2002

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Canadian province of Quebec (with joint adoption)

Came into effect: Finland (without joint adoption until May 2009, then with step-adoption)

Passed: Argentinian city of Buenos Aires (without joint adoption)

Limited Partnerships laws:

Passed: Swiss canton of Zurich (without joint adoption)

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: South Africa (joint and step adoption), Sweden (step adoption)

Anti-discrimination legislation: US states of Alaska (public sector, sexual orientation) and New York (private sector, sexual orientation)

Equalization of age of consent: Austria, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Hungary, Moldova, Romania and the Australian state ofWestern Australia

Repeal of Sodomy laws: Romania, Costa Rica and the US States of Arkansas and Massachusetts

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: China, Mongolia

Other: openly gay Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn is assassinated by Volkert van der Graaf

Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays established its Transgender Network, also known as TNET, as its first official "Special Affiliate," recognized with the same privileges and responsibilities as its regular chapters.

At the Reform seminary Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York, the Reform rabbi Margaret Wenig organized the first school-wide seminar at any rabbinical school which addressed the psychological, legal, and religious issues affecting people who are intersex or transsexual.

·                    2003

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Belgium (without joint adoption until Apr 2006) and the Canadian provinces ofOntario, British Columbia

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Came into effect: Argentinian city of Buenos Aires (without joint adoption)

Passed: Australian state of Tasmania (step adoption only)

Limited Partnerships laws:

Came into effect: Austria (without joint adoption)(replaced with registered partnerships 2010), Croatia (without registration or adoption)

Anti-discrimination legislation:Bulgaria ( all sectors, sexual orientation), United Kingdom (excluding religious organisations, sexual orientation), US states of Arizona (public sector, sexual orientation), Kentucky (public sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Michigan (executive branch of the state government, sexual orientation), New Mexico (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Pennsylvania (public sector, gender identity)

End to ban on gay people in the military: Russia

Equalization of age of consent: Australian state and territory (resp.) of New South Wales and Northern Territory

Repeal of Sodomy laws: Armenia, USA (Lawrence v. Texas)

Repeal of the concept of Buggery in law: United Kingdom

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Iraq

Recriminalisation of homosexuality: Belize

Other: Section 28 is repealed in England and Wales and Northern Ireland. Gene Robinson becomes the first openly gay Bishop in the Episcopal church in the USA.

Reuben Zellman became the first openly transgender person accepted to the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, where he was ordained in 2010.

In 2003, the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards approved a rabbinic ruling that concluded that sex reassignment surgery (SRS) is permissible as a treatment of gender dysphoria, and that a transgender person's sex status under Jewish law is changed by SRS.

Legal recognition of indeterminate gender: Alex MacFarlane became the first person reported to obtain a birth certificate and passport, in Australia, showing indeterminate gender.

In 2003 the Reform rabbi Margaret Wenig organized the first school-wide seminar at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College which addressed the psychological, legal, and religious issues affecting people who are intersex or transsexual.

·                    2004

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Canadian provinces of Manitoba (with adoption), Newfoundland and Labrador,Nova Scotia, Quebec (with adoption), Saskatchewan and Yukon, US State of Massachusetts

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Brazilian State of Rio Grande do Sul, Luxembourg (without joint adoption) and US state of Maine

Came into effect:: Australian state of Tasmania (step adoption only)

Passed: New Zealand (without joint adoption)

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: New Jersey

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: Germany (Step Adoption)

Banning of Same-sex marriage: Australia, US states of Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Oregon and Utah

Banning of Same-sex marriage and civil unions: US states of Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana,Michigan, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Virginia and Wisconsin

Anti-discrimination legislation: Portugal, US States of Indiana (public sector, gender identity), Louisiana (public sector, sexual orientation) and Maine

Equalization of age of consent: Lithuania

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Cape Verde, Marshall Islands and San Marino

Other: UK Gender Recognition Bill, James McGreevey becomes the first openly gay Governor in U.S. history.

The first all-transgender performance of the Vagina Monologues was held. The monologues were read by eighteen notable transgender women, and a new monologue revolving around the experiences and struggles of transgender women was included.

Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon became the first same-sex couple to be legally married in the United States, when San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom allowed city hall to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples. However, all same-sex marriages done in 2004 in California were annulled. After the California Supreme Court decision in 2008 that granted same-sex couples in California the right to marry, Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon remarried, and were again the first same-sex couple in the state to marry. Later in 2008 Prop 8 illegalized same-sex marriage in California, but the marriages that occurred between the California Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage and the approval of Prop 8 illegalizing it are still considered valid, including the marriage of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon. However, Del Martin died in 2008.

James McGreevey, then governor of New Jersey, came out as gay, thus becoming the first openly gay state governor in United States history. He resigned soon after.

Bisi Alimi became the first Nigerian to declare his homosexuality on television.

·                    2005

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Canada, Spain (with joint adoption)

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passes and Came into effect: Andorra, United Kingdom (without joint adoption (England and Wales) until December 2005, without joint adoption (Scotland) until Sep 2009, without joint adoption (Northern Ireland)), US state of Connecticut

Came into effect: New Zealand (without joint adoption), US state of California

Passed: Switzerland (without adoption), Slovenia

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: UK Subdivisions of England and Wales

Banning of Same-sex marriage: Latvia Uganda and Honduras

Banning of Same-sex marriage and civil unions: US states of Kansas and Texas

Anti-discrimination legislation: US States of Illinois (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity) andMaine (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity)

Repeal of Sodomy laws: Puerto Rico

Other: two gay male teenagers, Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz Marhoni, are executed in Iran, André Boisclair is chosen leader of the Parti Québécois, becoming the first openly gay man elected as the leader of a major political party in North America. Bonnie Bleskachek became the first openly lesbian fire chief of a major metropolitan area in the United States (specifically, Minneapolis.) The Roman Catholic Church issues an instruction prohibiting any individuals who "present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called 'gay culture'" from joining the priesthood.

The Simpsons became the first cartoon series to dedicate an entire episode to the topic of same-sex marriage.

The first European Transgender Council Meeting was held in Vienna.

Alexandra Billings became the first openly trans woman to have played a transgender character on television, which she did in the 2005 made-for-TV movie Romy and Michelle: A New Beginning.

·                    2006

In 2006 Kim Coco Iwamoto became the first transgender official to win statewide office in Hawaii.

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: South Africa (with joint adoption)

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Czech Republic (without joint adoption)

Came into effect: Slovenia

Passed: Mexican City of Mexico City and US state of New Jersey

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed: Australian State of South Australia

Abroad Union recognition: Israel

Banning of Same-sex marriage: US State of Tennessee

Banning of Same-sex marriage and civil unions: US States of Alabama, Colorado,Idaho, South Carolina, South Dakota, Virginia, Wisconsin

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: Belgium

Anti-discrimination legislation: Faroe Islands, Germany (sexual orientation and gender identity), New Zealand (gender identity) and US States and Districts of Illinois (sexual orientation), New Jersey (private sector, gender identity), Washington (sexual orientation and gender identity) andWashington, D.C. (private sector, gender identity)

Voiding of Anti-discrimination legislation: Kentucky

Equalization of age of consent: Hong Kong, Isle of Man, Serbia

Marches and Prides: the first homosexual pride march in Moscow ends with violence, the first regional Eastern European Pride is held in Zagreb, Croatia

Other: Springfield, Missouri repeals gay soliciting laws, the United States Senate fails to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment, the International Conference on LGBT Human Rights is held in Montreal, another section 28 "successfully repealed" in Isle of Man Chaya Gusfield and Rabbi Lori Klein, both ordained in America, became the first openly lesbian rabbis ordained by the Jewish Renewal movement. Conservative Judaism decided to allow openly lesbian rabbis and cantors.

Elliot Kukla, who came out as transgender six months before his ordination in 2006, was the first openly transgender person to be ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion.

State Rep. Patricia Todd, D-Birmingham, became Alabama's first openly gay public official when she was elected in 2006.

Kim Coco Iwamoto became the first transgender official to win statewide office in Hawaii.

·                    2007

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Mexican state of Coahuila

Came into effect: Mexican City of Mexico City, Switzerland (without adoption), US state of New Jersey

Passed: Hungary (with adoption), US state of New Hampshire, Uruguay (without adoption until Sep 2008)

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: US state of Washington and Colombia

Came into effect: Australian state of South Australia, US state of Oregon

Anti-discrimination legislation: United Kingdom (sexual orientation) and US states of Colorado (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Iowa (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Kansas (public sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Michigan (public sector, gender identity), Ohio (public sector, sexual orientation and gender identity), Oregon (private sector, sexual orientation and gender identity) and Vermont (private sector, gender identity)

Equalization of age of consent: Portugal, South Africa, UK territory of Jersey, Vanuatu

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Nepal and New Zealand territories of Niue and Tokelau

Marches and Prides: the first ever gay pride parade in a Muslim country is held in Istanbul, Turkey;

Other: on 9 August 2007, the Logo cable channel hosts the first presidential forum in the United States focusing specifically on LGBT issues. Six Democratic Party candidates participate in the event. GOP candidates were asked to attend but turned it down. On 29 November, the first foreign gay wedding was held in Hanoi, Vietnam between a Japanese and an Irish national. The wedding raised much attention in the gay and lesbian community in Vietnam.

From 2007 to 2008 actress Candis Cayne played Carmelita Rainer, a transgender woman having an affair with married New York Attorney General Patrick Darling (played by William Baldwin), on the ABC prime time drama Dirty Sexy Money. The role made Cayne the first openly transgender actress to play a recurring transgender character in prime time.

On 29 November, the first foreign gay wedding was held in Hanoi, Vietnam between a Japanese and an Irish national. The wedding raised much attention in the gay and lesbian community in Vietnam.

Jalda Rebling, a German woman born in the Netherlands and ordained in America, became the first openly lesbian cantor ordained by the Jewish Renewal movement.

Rabbi Toba Spitzer became the first openly lesbian or gay person to head a rabbinical assembly when she was elected president of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Assembly at the group's annual convention, held in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Joy Ladin became the first openly transgender professor at an Orthodox institution (Stern College for Women ofYeshiva University).

Amaranta Gómez Regalado (for México Posible) became the first transsexual person to appear in the Mexican Congress.

Ellen DeGeneres became the first open lesbian to host the Academy Awards.

Ventura Place in Studio City was renamed Dr. Betty Berzon Place in her honor, making it the first street ever officially dedicated to a known lesbian in California.

·                    2008

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: US states of California (May–Nov 2008) and Connecticut

Passed: Norway (with joint adoption)

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: The Australian Capital Territory, Ecuador (without joint adoption), US state of Washington (expansion of previous legislation)

Came into effect: US state of New Hampshire, Uruguay (without joint adoption until Sep 2008)

Limited Partnership laws:

Came into effect: Australian state of Victoria, US state of Oregon

Banning of Same-sex marriage: US states of Arizona and California

Banning of Same-sex marriage and civil unions: US state of Florida

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: Uruguay

Banning of Same-sex adoption: Arkansas (struck down by the Arkansas Supreme Court in 2011)

Anti-discrimination legislation: California

Equalization of age of consent: Nicaragua, Panama

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Nicaragua and Panama

Marches and Prides: the first ever gay pride parade in Bulgaria

Other: Kosovo declares itself to be an independent country with a new constitution that includes mention of "sexual orientation", the first of its kind in Eastern Europe, Portland voters elect Sam Adams (Oregon politician)mayor, making it the largest city in the US with an openly gay mayor (the next largest is Providence, Rhode Island), 3 June the first two same-sex civil marriages (two men and two women)take place in Greece on the island of Tilos, the supreme court prosecutor and the minister of Justice claim the marriages are null and void.

Silverton, Oregon elected Stu Rasmussen as the first openly transgender mayor in America.

Angie Zapata, a transgender woman, was murdered in Greeley, Colorado. Allen Andrade was convicted of first-degree murder and committing a bias-motivated crime, because he killed her after he learned that she wastransgender. This case was the first in the nation to get a conviction for a hate crime involving a transgender victim. Angie Zapata's story and murder were featured on Univision's "Aqui y Ahora" television show on 1 November 2009.

The first ever U.S. Congressional hearing on discrimination against transgender people in the workplace was held, by the House Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions.

Rachel Maddow became the first openly gay or lesbian anchor of a major prime-time news program in the United States when she began hosting The Rachel Maddow Show on U.S. cable network MSNBC.

Annise Parker was elected as the first openly gay or lesbian mayor of Houston, Texas.

Kate Brown was elected as the Oregon Secretary of State in the 2008 elections, becoming America's first openly bisexual statewide officeholder.

Jan Hamilton, formerly Parachute Regiment Captain Ian Hamilton, became the first UK officer to complete gender reassignment from male to female.

·                    2009

Jóhanna Sigurðardóttirbecame the Prime Minister of Iceland in 2009, and thus became the first openly gay head of government in modern times.   

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Sweden (with joint adoption), US states ofIowa, and Vermont

Came into effect: Norway (with joint adoption) and same-sex marriage in the Coquille Indian Tribe on the southern Oregon coast, In 2009 Kitzen and Jeni Branting married in the Coquille Indian tribe's Coos Bay plankhouse, a 3-year-old meeting hall built in traditional Coquille style with cedar plank walls. They were the first same-sex couple to have their marriage recognized by the tribe, of which Kitzen was a member.

Passed: Mexican City of Mexico City (with joint adoption), US states and districts ofNew Hampshire (step adoption only), Maine (never came into effect), Washington, D.C.

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Hungary (without joint adoption), Colombia (expansion of previous rights without joint adoption), US states of Nevada and Washington (expansion of previous rights)

Passed: Austria (without joint adoption)

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: US states of Colorado and Wisconsin

Abroad Union recognition: Japan, US district of Washington, D.C.

Same-sex couple adoption legalisation: Finland (step adoption), UK Subdivision of Scotland

Banning of Same-sex marriage: Maine

Anti-discrimination legislation: Serbia, US state of Delaware (private sector, sexual orientation), USA Matthew Shepard Act.

End to ban on gay people in the military: Argentina, Philippines, Uruguay

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: India

Other: Iceland elects the first openly gay head of government in the world, Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir; On 10 March 2009, in Tel Aviv, Uzi Even and his life partner was the first same-sex male couple in Israel whose right of adoption has been legally acknowledged.; (26 May), the California Supreme Court upholds Proposition 8, the ballot initiative that banned same-sex marriage in November 2008, with a 6–1 vote; the Canadian province of Alberta becomes the last province to include the words "sexual orientation" in the Human Rights Act; Washington state voters approve keeping same-sex relationship rights as Domestic Partnerships by 51 percent; (12 Dec), Annise Parker is elected mayor of Houston, Texas, which becomes the largest city in the United States with an openly gay mayor Welsh rugby star Gareth Thomas becomes the first known top-level professional male athlete in a team sport to come out while still active.

Diego Sanchez became the first openly transgender person to work on Capitol Hill; he was hired as a legislative assistant for Barney Frank. Sanchez was also the first transgender person on the Democratic National Committee's (DNC) Platform Committee in 2008.

Barbra "Babs" Siperstein was nominated and confirmed as an at-large member of the Democratic National Committee, becoming its first openly transgender member.

Carol Ann Duffy was chosen as the first openly lesbian or gay Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom.

In October 2009, LGBT activist Amy Andre was appointed as executive director of the San Francisco Pride Celebration Committee, making her San Francisco Pride's first openly bisexual woman.

·                    2010

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Portugal (without joint adoption), Iceland (with joint adoption), Argentina (with adoption)

Came into effect: Mexican City of Mexico City (with joint adoption). US state of New Hampshire (step adoption only) and Washington, D.C.

Recognition: The Mexican Supreme Court rules that marriages contracted in Mexico City are valid throughout the country, although no other jurisdiction is required to perform them. Australian State of Tasmania recognizes same-marriages performed in other jurisdictions.

Other: U.S. state of California, United States District Judge Vaughn Walker strikes down California's Proposition 8 is in violation of the United States Constitution's Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses.

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Came into effect: Austria (without adoption and IVF access rights)

Passed: Ireland (without adoption rights)

Limited Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Australian state of New South Wales (without joint adoption until Sep 2010)

Same-sex couple adoption legislation: Australian state of New South Wales, Denmark

End to ban of same-sex couple adoption: US states of Arkansas and Florida

End to ban of gay people in the military: Serbia

Passed: USA (See Don't Ask Don't Tell)

End to ban of trans people in the military: Australia

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Fiji

Marches and Prides: the first ever legal gay pride parade in Russia, held in St. Petersburg

Guinness World Records recognized transgender man Thomas Beatie as the world's "First Married Man to Give Birth."

Amanda Simpson became the first openly transgender presidential appointee in America when she was appointed as senior technical adviser in the Commerce Department's Bureau of Industry and Security.

Kye Allums became the first openly transgender athlete to play in NCAA basketball.[278][279] He was a transgender man who played on George Washington University's women's team.

Victoria Kolakowski became the first openly transgender judge in America.

Mary Albing became the first openly lesbian minister ordained by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, serving the Lutheran Church of Christ the Redeemer on the south side of Minneapolis.

Chai Feldblum, who was openly lesbian, became the first openly LGBT person to serve on the EEOC.

Donna Ryu became the first Asian-American woman, first Korean American, and first lesbian to be appointed as a judge of the United States District Court, Northern District of California.

·                    2011

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and Came into effect: New York, the Suquamish tribe of Washington; at least one member of a same-sex couple has to be an enrolled member of the Suquamish tribe to be able to marry in the jurisdiction.

India's first married lesbian couple: LGBT rights in India (July 2011)

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Came into effect: Ireland (without adoption rights)

Passed and Came into effect: Isle of Man (with joint adoption), US State of Illinois (with joint adoption rights),Liechtenstein, Rhode Island

Passed: US State of Delaware (came into effect 2013) and Hawaii (came into effect Jan 2012)

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Mozambique

End to ban on openly gay, lesbian, and bisexual people in the military: USA (see Don't Ask, don't tell)

Tony Briffa, believed to be the world’s first intersex mayor, elected in the City of Hobsons Bay in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia, at the end of November.

Elio Di Rupo, first openly-gay male head of government, becomes Prime Minister of Belgium, 6 December.

Chaz Bono appeared on the 13th season of the US version of Dancing with the Stars in 2011. This was the first time an openly transgender man starred on a major network television show for something unrelated to being transgender.

Harmony Santana became the first openly transgender actress to receive a major acting award nomination; she was nominated by the Independent Spirit Awards as Best Supporting Actress for the movie Gun Hill Road.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted to allow the ordination of openly gay and lesbian ministers.

Rachel Isaacs became the first openly lesbian rabbi ordained by the Conservative movement’s Jewish Theological Seminary.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta of California and Petty Officer 3rd Class Citlalic Snell of Los Angeles became the first same-sex couple chosen to share the first kiss upon a U.S. Navy ship's return.

Brenda Sue Fulton was named to the West Point Board of Visitors, making her the first openly gay member of the board that advises the Academy.

Brooke (last name withheld) was hired as the New York Fire Department's first openly transgender employee.

Miss New York, Claire Buffie, became the first Miss America contestant to campaign for the Miss America title on a gay rights platform.

Jaiyah "Johnny" Saelua became the first openly transgender international footballer to play in the World Cup when she took the field for American Samoa in Oceania’s first round of World Cup qualifiers for Brazil 2014.

A resolution submitted by South Africa requesting a study on discrimination and sexual orientation (A/HRC/17/L.9/Rev.1) passed, 23 to 19 with 3 abstentions, in the UN Human Rights Council on 17 June 2011. This is the first time that any United Nations body approved a resolution affirming the rights of LGBT people.

Fred Karger began his unsuccessful run for the 2012 Republican nomination for President, which made him America’s first openly gay Republican presidential candidate.

·                    2012

Kyrsten Sinemabecame the first openly bisexual person elected to the U.S. Congress in 2012.

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and came into effect: Denmark, Mexican state of Quintana Roo, U.S. states of Maine and Washington

Passed: U.S. state of Maryland

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Came into effect: U.S. State of Hawaii

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Lesotho, São Tomé and Príncipe

The first gay Israeli couple was granted a divorce by an Israeli family court. The divorce of Tel Aviv University Professor Avi Even, the first openly gay Knesset member, and Dr. Amit Kama was granted on Sunday by the Ramat Gan Family Court, according to Haaretz, which ordered the Interior Minister to register their status as divorced.

The U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity issued a regulation to prohibit LGBT discrimination in federally assisted housing programs. The new regulations ensure that the Department's core housing programs are open to all eligible persons, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Katie Ricks became the first open lesbian ordained by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Barack Obama became the first U.S. president to publicly announce support for same-sex marriage on 9 May.

Taiwan's first same-sex Buddhist wedding was held for Fish Huang and her partner You Ya-ting, with Buddhist master Shih Chao-hui presiding over the ritual.  City Councilmember Marlene Pray joined the Doylestown, Pennsylvania council in 2012, though she resigned in 2013; she was the first openly bisexual office holder in Pennsylvania.

Tammy Baldwin was elected as the first openly lesbian or gay U.S. Senator.

Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) became the first openly bisexual person elected to the US Congress.

Stacie Laughton became the first openly transgender person elected to any American state legislature when she won a seat in the New Hampshire House of Representatives.  However, she resigned from the New Hampshire state legislature before she took office, after it was revealed that she had served four months in Belknap County House of Corrections following a 2008 credit card fraud conviction.

San Francisco voted to become the first U.S. city to provide and cover the cost of sex reassignment surgeries for uninsured transgender residents.

Mark Pocan was elected in Wisconsin’s 2nd Congressional District, becoming the first openly gay candidate who will follow an openly gay member of the U.S. Congress (in this case Tammy Baldwin).

Sean Patrick Maloney became the first openly gay candidate elected to represent New York in Congress.

Mark Takano became the first openly gay person of color to win election to the U.S. House. He was elected to represent California’s 41st Congressional District.

Josh Boschee was elected as North Dakota's first openly gay legislator.

Stephen Skinner was elected as West Virginia's first openly gay state legislator.

Jacob Candelaria was elected as New Mexico's first openly gay male state legislator.

Brian Sims became Pennsylvania's first openly gay state legislator who was out when he was elected.

After Brian Sims was elected but before he took office, Rep. Mike Fleck came out as gay, making him Pennsylvania's first openly gay state legislator.

David Richardson was elected as Florida's first openly gay state legislator.

Colorado Democrats elected Mark Ferrandino as the first openly gay House speaker in state history.

Tina Kotek was elected the first openly gay House speaker in the State of Oregon.

Maine, Maryland, and Washington became the first states to pass same-sex marriage by popular vote.  Maine was the very first state to do so, followed by Maryland.

The first same-sex marriage at the U.S. Military Academy was held for a young lieutenant and her partner (Ellen Schick and Shannon Simpson) at the Old Cadet Chapel in West Point’s cemetery.

The first same-sex marriage at the U.S. Military Academy's Cadet Chapel at West Point (not to be confused with the Old Cadet Chapel) was held for Brenda Sue Fulton and Penelope Dara Gnesin. Fulton was a veteran and the communications director of an organization called Outserve, which represents actively serving gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender military personnel.

The first same-sex couple became engaged in the White House (Ben Schock and Matthew Phelps).

Air Force Col. Ginger Wallace became the first known out member of the U.S. military to have their same-sex partner participate in the pinning ceremony tradition that had been reserved for spouses and family members. Her partner of 10 years, Kathy Knopf, pinned colonel wings on Wallace days after the two attended President Obama's State of The Union address as a guest of the First Lady.

At a ceremony in Arlington, Army Reserve officer Tammy Smith became the first openly gay, active duty general in American history. Smith was promoted to brigadier general at a private ceremony at the Women's Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery.

Navy Chief Elny McKinney and Anacelly McKinney became the first known same-sex couple to marry on a U.S. military base. They were wed at Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego.

Kate McKinnon became Saturday Night Live's first openly lesbian cast member; Danitra Vance never disclosed her sexual orientation publicly, but was revealed to be a lesbian when she died.

On 28 June 2012 Diana King declared "Yes I am a Lesbian" to her fans from her official Facebook page, thus becoming the first Jamaican artist to ever publicly come out.

California became the first state to sign a ban on therapy that claims to convert gay people into heterosexual. The California law, enacted in 2012, is as of 2013 held up in federal courts on first amendment grounds.

Orlando Cruz became the world's first professional boxer to come out as gay.

On 18 September 2012, Berkeley, California became the first city in the U.S. to officially proclaim a day recognizing bisexuals.[341] The Berkeley City Council unanimously and without discussion declared 23 September as Bisexual Pride and Bi Visibility Day.

Emily Aviva Kapor, an American rabbi who had been ordained privately by a Conservadox rabbi in 2005, began living as a woman in 2012, thus becoming the first openly transgender female rabbi.

Rainbow Jews, an oral history project showcasing the lives of Jewish bisexual, lesbian, gay, and transgender people in the United Kingdom from the 1950s until the present, was launched.  It is the United Kingdom's first archive of Jewish bisexual, lesbian, gay, and transgender history.

In November 2012, the Southern Poverty Law Center filed a lawsuit against JONAH (a Jewish ex-gay organization), Goldberg, and Downing on behalf of Unger, Levin, two other participants, and two of the participants' mothers for fraudulent practices which are illegal under New Jersey's consumer protection laws. The Southern Poverty Law Center noted that the lawsuit was "groundbreaking" insofar as it was the first time a conversion therapy provider has been sued for fraudulent business practices.

ParaNorman, released in 2012, had the first openly gay character in a mainstream animated film.

·                    2013

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and came into effect: New Zealand, Uruguay, Brazil (federal level), France, Brazilian states of Ceará,Paraná, Mato Grosso do Sul, Rio de Janeiro, Rondônia, Santa Catarina and Paraíba, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation in the state of Washington, the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, thePokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians, and the Santa Ysabel Tribe, the U.S. states of Delaware, Rhode Island, Minnesota, New Jersey, Hawaii and New Mexico

Restored: California

Passed: England and Wales, US state of Illinois

Passed but then overturned: Australian Capital Territory

Came into effect: U.S. State of Maryland

Recognition: The Supreme Court of the United States ruled Section 3 of Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, thus giving same-sex marriage federal recognition. US state of Oregon

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Mexican state of Campeche

Came into effect: U.S. State of Colorado

Same-sex couple adoption legalization: New Zealand, Gibraltar, France

Decriminalization of homosexuality: Benin

Recriminalization of homosexuality: India

Anti-discrimination legislation:

For sexual orientation and gender identity: Cyprus, Puerto Rico

For gender identity: Delaware

Anti-discrimination executive action: Virginia

Barack Obama mentioned the word "gay" and the issue of gay rights for the first time in a speech at the U.S. presidential swearing in; specifically, he did so in his inaugural address.

Kathleen Wynne became the first openly LGBT premier of a Canadian province, namely Ontario, after defeating Sandra Pupatello in the third round of voting of the Ontario Liberal party's leadership race on 26 January 2013. Sworn in on 11 February 2013, she is the party's first openly LGBT leader and Ontario's first female premier.

Robbie Rogers announced he was gay on 15 February 2013, becoming the only male fully capped international association footballer to do so.

Jason Collins on 29 April, 2013, became the first active male professional athlete in a major North American team sport to publicly come out as gay.

Rep. Mark Pocan's spouse Philip Frank became the first same-sex spouse of a federal lawmaker to officially receive a House Spouse ID. In 2009, Marlon Reis, the spouse of Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.), was issued a congressional spouse ID, but later card services told him that he had been given the designation accidentally.

For the first time the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs decided to allow the same-sex spouse of a military veteran to be buried in a U.S. national cemetery. VA Secretary Eric Shinseki gave permission for retired Air Force officer Linda Campbell, 66, to bury the ashes of her same-sex spouse Nancy Lynchild at Willamette National Cemetery in Oregon.

Autumn Sandeen, a U.S. veteran and transgender woman, received a letter from a Navy official stating, "Per your request the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) has been updated to show your gender as female effective 12 April 2013." Allyson Robinson of Out serve declared, "To our knowledge, this is the first time that the Department of Defense has recognized and affirmed a change of gender for anyone affiliated, in a uniformed capacity — in this case a military retiree."

The first same-sex kiss ever on a Eurovision stage occurred at the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest when Krista Siegfrids, who sang "Marry Me", ended her semi-final performance by kissing one of her female dancers.

Dr. Saul Levin was named on 15 May 2013 as the new chief executive officer and medical director of the American Psychiatric Association, making him the first known openly gay person to head the APA.

Ukraine had its first gay pride march, which was held in Kiev.

Robbie Rogers joined the Los Angeles Galaxy, making him the first openly gay male athlete to compete in Major League Soccer.   Rehana Kausar and Sobia Kamar, both from Pakistan, became the first Muslim lesbian couple to enter into civil partnership in the United Kingdom.

Fallon Fox came out as transgender, thus becoming the first openly transgender athlete in mixed martial artshistory.

Jallen Messersmith of Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan., came out and is believed to be the first openly gay player in U.S. men's college basketball.

Guy Erwin became the first openly gay bishop to be elected by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; he was elected to the Southwest California Synod of the ELCA.

Major General Patricia "Trish" Rose became the first openly lesbian two-star general in the U.S. Air Force, and the highest ranking openly gay officer in the entire U.S. military at the time.

Kristin Beck, formerly Chris Beck, came out as the first openly transgender retired Navy SEAL.

The Bi Writers Association, which promotes bisexual writers, books, and writing, announced the winners of its first Bisexual Book Awards. An awards ceremony was held at the Nuyorican Poets Café in New York City.

The U.S. Senate confirmed Nitza Quiñones Alejandro to a federal judgeship, making her the first openly gay Latina to hold such a post.

Cason Crane became the first openly gay man to summit the Seven Summits and the first the bring the rainbow flag to the summit of Mount Everest.

U.S. Air Force Under Secretary Eric Fanning took over as acting secretary of the U.S. Air Force, becoming the highest ranking openly LGBT official at the Department of Defense; he is openly gay.

The Directors Guild Of America elected Paris Barclay as its first black and first openly gay president.

Julian Marsh and Traian Povov become the first married gay couple to have a green card application approved, in this case for Julian Marsh.

Kristin Perry and Sandra Stier became the first same-sex couple to be married in California since Proposition 8was overturned.

Daniel Kawczynski became the first MP in Britain to come out as bisexual.

A married lesbian couple in Colorado became the first to receive a marriage-based green card, making Cathy Davisthe first same-sex spouse to become a lawful permanent resident of the United States.

Maureen Le Marinel became the first openly lesbian union president elected in Britain.[381] She was elected to the presidency of Unison, one of Britain's largest trade unions.

Same Love, a hit single from Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, became the first Top 40 song in the U.S. to promote and celebrate same-sex marriage.

For the first time, the California Department of Education's list of recommended books for grades Pre-K-through-12 included a book with a transgender theme, I Am J by Cris Beam.

Benjamin Medrano was elected as the first openly gay mayor in Mexico's history, being elected mayor of the township of Fresnillo.

The first UFC match between two openly-gay fighters, Liz Carmouche and Jessica Andrade, was held.

Although same-sex marriage is illegal in Pennsylvania as of July 2013, in that month Loreen Bloodgood marriedAlicia Terrizzi, making them the first same-sex couple to marry in Pennsylvania; the Montgomery County register of wills, D. Bruce Hanes, had said that his office would issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Although same-sex marriage is illegal in Pennsylvania as of August 2013, in that month Mayor John Fetterman officiated the first same-sex marriage in Allegheny County, between John Kandray and Bill Gray.

California enacted America's first law protecting transgender students; the law, called the School Success and Opportunity Act, declares that every public school student in California from kindergarten to 12th grade must be "permitted to participate in sex-segregated school programs and activities, including athletic teams and competitions, and use facilities consistent with his or her gender identity, irrespective of the gender listed on the pupil’s records."

New Jersey became the second state, after California, to sign a ban on therapy that claims to convert gay people into heterosexual. The California law, enacted in 2012, is as of 2013 held up in federal courts on first amendment grounds.

Darren Young (real name: Fred Rosser) became the first active professional wrestler to come out as gay.

Russia's government adopted a federal bill banning the distribution of "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations" to minors. The law imposes heavy fines for using the media or internet to promote "non-traditional relations".

Master Sgt. Angela Shunk and her wife, Tech. Sgt. Stacey Shunk, became the first same-sex couple to receive an assignment together under the U.S. Air Force’s Join Spouse program.

Jennifer Pritzker came out as transgender in 2013 and thus became the world's first openly transgender billionaire.

On Celebrate Bisexuality Day, the White House held a closed-door meeting with almost 30 bisexual advocates so they could meet with government officials and discuss issues of specific importance to the bisexual community; this was the first bi-specific event ever hosted by any White House.

Movie director Kim Jho Gwang-soo and his partner Kim Seung-hwan became the first South Korean gay couple to publicly wed, although it was not a legally recognized marriage.

Harvey Milk was chosen as the first openly LGBT political official to be featured on an American postage stamp.

Carol McCrory and Brenda Clark became the first same-sex couple to have their marriage application accepted by Buncombe County Register of Deeds Drew Resigner, which makes them the first same-sex couple to have their marriage application accepted in the South.

Andy Herren became the first openly gay winner of the American version of the "Big Brother" reality show.

The first gay pride parade in Montenegro was held.

The first gay pride week in Curacao was held.

The first Indo-American lesbian wedding was held. It was held in Los Angeles.

The first televised Romanian same-sex wedding was held. It was between two men, and was done on the reality show Four Weddings and a Challenge.

The Portland Trailblazers became the first NBA team to support same-sex marriage.

Todd Hughes became the first openly gay U.S. circuit judge.

The first United Nations ministerial meeting on the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals was held.  Representatives from the US, France, Argentina, Brazil, Croatia, the Netherlands, Norway, Japan, New Zealand and the EU, along with executive directors of Human Rights Watch and the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission reaffirmed their commitments to working together to end discrimination and violence towards the LGBT community. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillaydelivered remarks [press release] commending the LGBT community and praising the fact that, "many countries have embarked on historic reforms—strengthening anti-discrimination laws, combating hate crime against LGBT people and sensitizing public opinion." 

New Jersey held its first legal same-sex marriages.

Jamie Miranda Nichols (née Glistenburg), of Missouri, on 20 May 2013 had case 13AR-CV00240 reviewed by the Missouri courts on the matter of gender affirmation and recognition. In a swift and subtle manner Justice Russell E. Steele effectively silenced Mo. Ann. Stat. § 193.215(9), with said law remaining on the books until formally repealed by order of a federal court or by legislative action. The ruling in 13AR-CV00240 that silences Mo. Ann. Stat. § 193.215(9) reads, in brief, as follows, "...it is found that said request of relief is proper and that such change will not be detrimental to the interest of any persons, nor be against the interest of the state or of any given establishment ... Wherefore, the court understands that select circumstances, such as this case, require judicial intervention in order to prevent discrimination. Moreover, the explicit requirement of surgical procedures or medications that may be deemed unsuitable, dangerous, or unnecessary to the Petitioner by medical assertion shall be given relief notwithstanding Mo. Ann. Stat. § 193.215(9)..." By virtue of the judicial precedent established in the case of 13AR-CV00240 there are many individuals and lawyers seeking similar relief in other cases, including the invalidation of similar restrictive laws in other states.

Rabbi Deborah Waxman was elected as the President of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. As the President, she is believed to be the first woman and first lesbian to lead a Jewish congregational union, and the first female rabbi and first lesbian to lead a Jewish seminary; RRC is both a congregational union and a seminary.

A six-year-old girl named Luana, who was born a boy, became the first transgender child in Argentina to have her new name officially changed on her identity documents. She is believed to be the youngest to benefit from the country’s new Gender Identity Law, which was approved in May 2012.

Q Radio, which went on the airwaves in September, claims to be India’s first radio station which caters to the country’s lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people.

Jennifer Finney Boylan was chosen as the first openly transgender co-chair of GLAAD's National Board of Directors.

On 31 October 2013 Paris Lees became the first openly transgender panellist to appear on the BBC's Question Time programme, drawing praise from commentators who included former Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott and the Labour Party deputy leader Harriet Harman.

Stephen Alexander, of Rhode Island, became the first high school coach to come out publicly as transgender.

Nikki Sinclaire came out as transgender, thus becoming the United Kingdom’s first openly transgender Parliamentarian.

San Francisco's first Project Homeless Connect for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people was held.

Lucy Vallender converted to Islam, thus becoming the United Kingdom's first openly transgender Muslim woman.

Mark C. Goldman became the first openly gay president of the American Conference of Cantors, a Reform Jewish organization.

Ben Barres became the first openly transgender scientist in the US National Academy of Sciences in 2013.

On November 1 Audrey Gauthier was elected president of CUPE 4041, representing Air Transat flight attendants based in Montreal. She thus became the first openly transgender person elected president of a union local in Canada.

·                    2014

Same-sex marriage laws:

Passed and came into effect: Scotland, US states of Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia,Wisconsin, Indiana, Colorado, Nevada, Idaho, West Virginia, North Carolina, Alaska, Arizona, Wyoming, Kansas,South Carolina and Montana

Passed: Luxembourg

Came into effect: England and Wales, US state of Illinois

Civil Union/Registered Partnership laws:

Passed and Came into effect: Gibraltar, Malta (with join adoption), Croatia

Passed: Estonia

Same-sex couple adoption legislation: Andorra

Decriminalisation of homosexuality: Lebanon, Northern Cyprus, Palau

The first same-sex marriage at the Rose parade was held, for Aubrey Loots and Danny LeClair.

Meghan Stabler became the first openly transgender woman to be named Working Mother magazine's Working Mother of the Year.

Conner Mertens, Willamette University's kicker, became the first active college football player to come out as LGBT; he came out as bisexual.

Good Luck Charlie on The Disney Channel became the first TV show on a child-targeting network to feature a same-sex couple (the characters' names were Susan and Cheryl).

Starkville became the first city in Mississippi to pass a resolution supporting the LGBT community; the resolution states that the city does not condone discrimination of any kind, including any against its citizens for their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Scotland passed the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Scotland) Bill, which will legalize same-sex marriages in the country when it comes into effect towards the end of 2014.

The Bisexual Resource Center, based in Boston, Massachusetts, declared March 2014 as the first Bisexual Health Awareness Month, with the theme "Bi the Way, Our Health Matters Too!"; it included the first social media campaign to address disparities in physical and mental health facing the bisexual community.

Queen Elizabeth II praised the London Lesbian and Gay Switchboard for their 40-year history making it the first time the Crown has ever publicly supported the LGBT community. They received a comment from the Queen saying: "Best wishes and congratulations to all concerned on this most special anniversary."  Toni Atkins was elected as the first openly lesbian speaker of the California Assembly. Judith Ellen Levy was confirmed by the Senate as the first openly lesbian federal judge in Michigan.

Gypsy Vered Meltzer was elected to the City Council in Appleton; as such he became the first openly transgender elected official in Wisconsin.

Anna Guillot and Chrissy Kelly, who were married in New York in 2012, became the first same-sex couple in Mississippi to create a public record of their marriage, which they did by paying to record their marriage license from New York at the Rankin County Chancery Clerk’s Office in Brandon, Mississippi. However, this did not give their marriage legal standing in Mississippi.

The marriage of Giuseppe Chigiotti and Stefano Bucci became the first overseas same-sex marriage to be legally recognized in Italy; the two were married in New York in 2012.

Berlin, Germany unveiled the world's first cemetery for lesbians.

Umma Azul was the first child of a lesbian couple to be baptized by the Catholic Church in Argentina.

Emilia Maria Jesty, daughter of a lesbian couple, was the first child born in Tennessee to have a woman listed on the birth certificate as her "father." 

UMass basketball player Derrick Gordon came out, thus becoming the first openly gay player in Division I college men's basketball.

Jeremy Pemberton married Laurence Cunnington, and thus Pemberton became the first priest in the Church of England to defy the Church's ban on gay clergy marrying.

Michael Sam was drafted by the St. Louis Rams and thus became the first openly gay player to be drafted into theNational Football League.

The world's first homoerotic stamps were produced in Finland, celebrating one of the country's most famous artists -Tom of Finland. Art critic Estelle Lovatt says "the stamps are a 'great statement' given that the country bans gay marriage".

In March 2014, same-sex marriage was legalized in Michigan, and Glenna DeJong and Marsha Caspar became the first same-sex couple married in Michigan; however, later that year the overturning of Michigan's ban on same-sex marriage was indefinitely stayed.

In May 2014, same-sex marriage was legalized in Arkansas, and Kristin Seaton and Jennifer Rambo became the first same-sex couple married in Arkansas: later that year, same-sex marriage in Arkansas was suspended by the Arkansas Supreme Court.

In May 2014, same-sex marriage was legalized in Oregon, and Deanna Geiger and Janine Nelson became the first same-sex couple to marry in Oregon.

The U.S. Naval Academy Chapel's first-ever same-sex wedding was held for David Bucher, a 49-year-old Academy graduate who works at the Pentagon, and partner Bruce Moats.

Costa Rica flew the gay pride flag at their presidential palace; the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission said the organization believed it was the first time the gay pride flag had been flown from the offices of a head of state in the Americas.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs agreed to give survivor benefits to the first-known same-sex war widow,Tracy Dice Johnson, whose wife Donna Johnson died in a suicide bombing attack in 2012.

Laverne Cox was on the cover of the 9 June 2014 issue of Time, and was interviewed for the article "The Transgender Tipping Point" by Katy Steinmetz, which ran in that issue and the title of which was also featured on the cover; this makes Cox the first openly transgender person on the cover of Time.

Both lesbian parents were listed on their children's birth certificates in Australia, which is the first time an Australian birth certificate indicates that both members of a same-sex couple were the legal parents of a child at birth. Best Bi Short Stories, the first book of its type, was published; it was edited by Sheela Lambert, who contributed the story Memory Lane. 

Cyprus' first ever gay pride parade draws several thousands of participants.

Same-sex marriage was legalized in Pennsylvania.

Carlos Bruce came out and thus became the first openly gay member of Congress in Peru.

Same-sex marriage was legalized in Wisconsin, but later that year same-sex marriages in Wisconsin were put on hold while the ruling striking down the state's ban on such unions was appealed.

Idaho's same-sex marriage ban was declared unconstitutional, but another court stayed the ruling.

The United Church of Christ filed a lawsuit challenging North Carolina’s ban on same-sex marriage, which isAmerica’s first faith-based challenge to same-sex marriage bans; the Central Conference of American Rabbisand the Alliance of Baptists joined the lawsuit later that year.

Lynne Brown was appointed as the first openly gay cabinet minister in South Africa, which also makes her the first openly gay person to be appointed to a cabinet post in any African government.

Zakhele Mbhele became the first openly gay person to serve in South Africa's parliament, which also makes him the first openly gay black member of parliament in any African nation.

Maite Oronoz Rodriguez became the first openly gay person to be nominated for a seat on Puerto Rico's Supreme Court, and was confirmed for the seat later that year.

Darrin P. Gayles became the first openly gay African-American man to be confirmed as a U.S federal judge.

The book Bisexuality: Making the Invisible Visible in Faith Communities, the first book of its kind, was published.  It is by Marie Alford-Harkey and Debra W. Haffner.

Transgender Studies Quarterly, the first non-medical academic journal devoted to transgender issues, began publication in 2014, with Susan Stryker and Paisley Currah as coeditors.

Petra De Sutter became the first openly transgender person to serve in Belgium's Parliament, specifically its Senate.

Britain's first Jewish lesbian marriage was held for Nicola Pettit, who is Jewish, and her girlfriend Tania Ward, in a ceremony which contained Jewish elements. They married in Brighton Town Hall, in southern England, and then had their union blessed by a rabbi. It was the first same-sex wedding involving a Jewish person since the same-sex marriage Act came into force.

Toni Atkins served as acting governor of California for a day after Governor Jerry Brown left for a trade mission to Mexico, Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom flew to the east coast for a Special Olympics appearance, and Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg was in Chicago for personal business. She thus became California's first openly gay governor on that day.

Laverne Cox became the first openly transgender person to be nominated for an Emmy in an acting category: Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for her role as Sophia Burset in Orange Is the New Black.

Yein Kai Yee and Sutpreedee Chinithigun, both British citizens, were married at the British Embassy in Vietnam, thus becoming the first same-sex British couple to marry in Vietnam.

The Transgender Trends panel was the first panel on that subject ever held at San Diego Comic-Con.

Gordon Stevenson and Peter Fraser, a dual Australian/British citizen, were the first to be married in Australia under British same-sex marriage laws; they were married at the British consulate in Sydney, Australia.

The first Jewish boat participated in the Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade. [483] Dana International was on the boat, as well as the Fokkens twins (Louise Fokkens and Martine Fokkens), who are famous in the Netherlands for having worked 50 years as sex workers in Amsterdam’s Red Light District before their retirement earlier in 2014.  Marianne van Praag, a Reform rabbi from The Hague, was the only rabbi aboard.

The first Moroccan boat participated in the Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade. 

Cosmopolitan magazine, a women's magazine, offered sex advice to lesbians for the first time in its history.

Pascal Tessier, a 17-year-old from Chevy Chase, Md., became the first known openly gay Boy Scout to be an Eagle Scout.

The 100 block of Turk Street was renamed Vicki Mar Lane after trans activist Vicki Marlane; this was the first time in San Francisco history for a street to be named after a transgender icon.

The United Church of Christ was the first religious denomination to be a major sponsor of the Gay Games, as a fourth-tier silver sponsor of Gay Games 9.

The Cleveland Foundation was the first presenting sponsor in the history of the Gay Games.

Istanbul Pride, the largest pride parade in a Muslim country, attracted hundreds of thousands of people.

Edward Sarafin, a backup offensive lineman at Arizona State, became the first active Division I football player to come out as gay.

Florida based bank C1 Financial became the first publicly listed bank in the United States to have an openly gay CEO (Trevor Burgess) when its stock became available to trade in August 2014.

The San Francisco Police academy graduated its first openly transgender police officer, Mikayla Connell. 

Chris Mosier became the first openly transgender man inducted into the National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame.

BBC2 commissioned Britain’s first transgender sitcom, called Boy Meets Girl, which follows the developing relationship between Leo, a 26 year-old man and Judy, a 40 year-old transgender woman.

Maria Walsh came out as gay after being crowned the Rose of Tralee, thus becoming the first openly gay Rose of Tralee.

Mills College became the first single-sex college in the U.S. to adopt a policy explicitly welcoming transgender students.

Mauricio Ruiz became the first serving member of the Chilean armed forces to announce he was gay.

Canadian-based writer and illustrator Eiynah wrote Pakistan's first anti-homophobia children's book, "My Chacha Is Gay"; she first wrote it online and had it released in print in 2014.

Hong Kong held its first international symposium on LGBTI rights.

For the first time in Italian history, a court granted permission for the adoption of a child living with a gay couple.The child was the biological daughter of one of the women in the couple, and her partner was allowed to legally become her co-parent through adoption. The couple had been living together in Rome since 2003, and the decision was taken by Rome's Juvenile Court.

The memorial honoring LGBT people persecuted by the Nazis in Tel Aviv, the first specific recognition in Israel for non-Jewish victims of the Holocaust, was unveiled in 2014.

The 5th European Transgender Council Meeting was held in Budapest, Hungary – the first such conference to take place in Central and Eastern Europe.

Mount Holyoke became the first Seven Sisters college to accept transgender students.

Mikie Goldstein became the first openly gay man to be ordained as a Conservative Jewish Rabbi. Later that year he became the Israeli Conservative movement’s first openly gay congregational rabbi with his installation as spiritual leader of its synagogue in Rehovot (Congregation Adat Shalom-Emanuel).

Monica Wehby aired the first campaign ad for American national office featuring a same-sex couple (Ben West and Paul Rummell).

Kinnon MacKinnon became the first openly transgender man to earn a gold in powerlifting at the Gay Games in the 2014 Games.

ICEIS Rain became the first openly two-spirit person to perform at the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards.

Jim Ferlo came out as gay, thus becoming the Pennsylvania Senate's first openly gay legislator.

Padmini Prakash became India’s first openly transgender television news anchor.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed two lawsuits against companies accused of discriminating against employees on the basis of gender identity; these lawsuits were the first Title VII action taken by the federal government on behalf of transgender workers. The lawsuits were filed for Amiee Stephens and Brandi Branson, both transgender women.

The UN Human Rights Council adopted a second resolution related to sexual orientation and gender identity on 26 September 2014. It passed by a vote of 25-14 and is the first time in the Council’s history that it adopted a resolution on LGBT rights with the majority of its members.

In 2014 California became the first state in the U.S. to officially ban the use of trans panic and gay panic defenses in murder trials.

Luisa Revilla Urcia became the first openly transgender person elected to a public office in Peru when she won a seat on the local council in La Esperanza in the province of Trujillo in northwestern Peru.

The Arizona Interscholastic Association Executive Board approved the first transgender student-athlete to play in a winter sport in Arizona. 

Family Circle featured a same-sex couple for the first time in its November 2014 issue.

Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple Inc., came out as gay, thus becoming the first openly gay CEO on the Fortune 500list.

Professional strongman Rob Kearney came out as gay, thus becoming the first openly gay man actively competing in professional, international strongman competitions. 

Maura Healey became the first openly gay state attorney general elected in America (she was elected attorney general of Massachusetts.) 

Susan Collins won reelection, thus becoming the first Republican senator to be reelected while supporting same-sex marriage.

Lea T became the face of American hair-care brand Redken, thus making her the first openly transgender model to front a global cosmetics brand.

Edgars Rinkēvičs became the first lawmaker in Latvia to announce he is gay, which also makes him the most prominent openly gay politician in a former Soviet Bloc state.

A national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention campaign featured an openly transgender person, Jennifer Barge, as its spokesperson for the first time.

Aditi Hardikar became the first woman of color to serve the White House as their liaison to the LGBT community.

A contingent of the group OutVets became the first LGBT organization in history to march in Boston’s Veterans Day parade.

At least 1,000 openly transgender Bangladeshis held Bangladesh's first pride march, to mark one year since the government recognized them as a third gender.

Derrick Gordon became the first openly gay athlete to play a game in Division I men’s basketball.

Dale Scott came out as gay in 2014, thus becoming the first openly gay umpire in Major League Baseball.

Poland elected its first openly gay city mayor (Robert Biedroń, elected mayor of Słupsk.)

Matthew Muir was sworn in as the first openly gay judge to sit on New Zealand’s High Court bench.

The Labor government in Victoria, Australia appointed Martin Foley as Minister of equality, marking the first time an Australian government has ever had a dedicated Minister overseeing gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex issues.

In 2014, Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay male athlete to win a big-time team pro sports title in the United States when the LA Galaxy won the Major League Soccer Cup.

Andrew Barr became the first openly gay state government leader in Australia after he was sworn in as chief minister of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).

Nehirim's first retreat for LGBT rabbis, rabbinic pastors, cantors, and students was held.

Craig Friesen and Matt Wiens became the first same-sex couple who were members of the Canadian Mennonite Church to have a wedding in their church.

Neil Patrick Harris became the first openly gay man to be named as The Hasty Pudding Theatricals Man of the Year.

·                    2015 (events are happening rapidly in 2015 – this will be updated often!!)

Same-sex marriage laws:

Came into effect: Luxembourg (with joint adoption), US state of Florida

Passed: Finland

Same-sex couple adoption legislation: Austria[547]

Madhu Kinnar became India’s first openly transgender person to be elected mayor; she was elected mayor ofChhattisgarh’s Raigarh Municipal Corporation.

Health Minister Leo Varadkar of Ireland came out as gay, thus becoming the first openly gay government member in the history of Ireland.

President Barack Obama became the first president to use the words "lesbian," "bisexual", and "transgender" in a State of the Union speech.

Zoey Tur joined INSIDE EDITION as a Special Correspondent during February, thus becoming the first openly transgender television reporter on national TV in America.

Lance Bass and Michael Turchin became the first same-sex couple to exchange vows on cable television.

Thomas Sawicki and his boyfriend Shawn Brier became the first male same-sex couple chosen to share the first kiss upon a U.S. Navy ship's return.

On February 12, 2015, USA Today reported that the commandant of Fort Leavenworth wrote in a February 5 memo, "After carefully considering the recommendation that (hormone treatment) is medically appropriate and necessary, and weighing all associated safety and security risks presented, I approve adding (hormone treatment) to Inmate [Chelsea] Manning's treatment plan." According to USA Today, Chelsea Manning remains a soldier, and the decision to administer hormone therapy is a first for the U.S. Army.

Kate Brown became the first openly bisexual governor in the United States, as governor of Oregon.

Neil Patrick Harris became the first openly gay man to host the Academy Awards.

The United States appointed Randy Berry as its first Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT Persons.

Screenwriter Jason Rothenberg of The 100 confirmed that that TV show's lead character, Clarke Griffin (played by Eliza Taylor) was bisexual; this makes her the first openly bisexual lead character on the CW network.