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Resident honored for work on behalf of LGBTQ+ community

Metro Wire Staff

BobbieJoy Amann recently received the Dr. P.B. Poorman Award for her outstanding achievement on behalf of LGBTQ+ people.

Amann has worked as an educator and advocate for the LGBTQ+ community since 2009, encouraging the self-inclusion and participation of the Queer community in the “entire fabric of life” across Portage County.

In 2015, she started a central Wisconsin transgender support group to address a need in the community. In 2016, with the help of Pastor Jane Johnson from Grace Presbyterian Church, she held a rally in support of the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando. The event featured Joanne Lee, a mother from Madison who lost a transgender child to suicide, in order to draw attention to the staggering rate of suicide among LGBTQ+ youth as well as the increase in bullying directed at them.

Amann is a past member of the PFLAG in central Wisconsin and a field representative for the Wisconsin LGBTQ+ Chamber of Commerce. She has given presentations on the importance of diversity before the Portage County Board of Supervisors and the Stevens Point Common Council, helped found a transgender support group at UW-Stevens Point, and worked with the Gay-Straight Alliance advisor at the local high school in 2015-16.

Amann also works with the local medical community to advocate for and monitor access to mental and physical health care treatment for the LGBTQ+ community. She has partnered with the Beloved Community Church to find resources for the Gender and Sexuality Alliance at UW-Stevens Point as a campus/community partner. She has shared her transition story at many public gatherings as well as in print, TV, and radio interviews advocating for LGBTQ+ issues.

In recent years, she has stepped back from the more visible and active role that she took in the past to focus on other issues such as homelessness and poverty in Portage County—two issues she said have a great impact on the LGBTQ+ community.

Amann said she’s “proud” to have witnessed the adoption of LGBTQ+ non-discrimination employment language by the local city and country governments covering public employees, which she said is an “important example of public discussions of LGBTQ+ issues.”