GMHC Congratulates Roberta Kaplan, Esq. and Demetre Daskalakis, MD, Two GMHC Board Members, on Being Honored by Out Magazine's "OUT100"

Nov 14, 2013, 11:51 ET from GMHC

NEW YORK, Nov. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- GMHC congratulates its Board of Directors' Secretary Roberta Kaplan, Esq. and Board member Demetre Daskalakis, MD, for being honored by Out Magazine's annual "OUT100," recognizing the outstanding achievements by LGBT people for their work on social causes.

Roberta Kaplan, Esq. of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton and Garrison, was the lead attorney for the U.S. Supreme Court case, Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)—U.S. versus Windsor, in which she represented longtime GMHC donor Edith Windsor.  The Supreme Court struck down the discriminatory DOMA on June 25, 2013.

Roberta, lovingly known as "Robbie" to her friends, explained, "It is only because of the efforts of people like Edie Windsor and those who founded and sustained organizations which continue to fight social injustice--like GMHC--that allowed this victory to happen. As Chief Judge Jacobs so eloquently wrote, 'Ninety years of discrimination is enough.' We can never show enough gratitude for prior generations like Edie's who lived through and struggled against that discrimination—particularly when so many of those men and women sadly did not survive to see this day."

Demetre Daskalakis, MD MPH serves as the Medical Director of the HIV/AIDS Services at Mount Sinai Hospital and is the Founding Director of the Men's Sexual Health Project (M*SHP).  

Demetre took lifesaving action to fend off a meningitis outbreak sweeping through the MSM community.  He initially arranged for the doses of the vaccine for free from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and continues to administer vaccinations at GMHC's Testing Center in Chelsea and gay clubs, administering over 2,500 vaccinations between March and October, thus far. Demetre was assisted by Frank Spinelli, MD, also a GMHC Board member, and DOHMH medical volunteers.

Demetre commented:  "Given the urgent need to address this potentially lethal infection impacting one of the communities so well served by GMHC, I am grateful for the support provided by both the DOHMH and GMHC to make this vaccine available. I am also thankful for Mount Sinai Hospital for sponsoring free vaccines that I administered in Fire Island in August."

Janet Weinberg, GMHC's Interim CEO, concluded: "We salute the valiant efforts of Robbie Kaplan and Demetre Daskalakis, and all of our Board members.  Their collective activism in our communities and dedication to GMHC propels the agency's mission forward in the fourth decade of the HIV/AIDS epidemic."

To read more about the OUT100 honorees, please click here.

Contact: Krishna Stone, 212-367-1016