The Rev. George B. Walker Embraces the Authentic

Meredith Heagney
Law School Office of Communications
October 16, 2012

The Rev. George B. Walker Jr. is a man of many identities. He is, as his title suggests, a minister. He’s also black. He’s gay, and he and his spouse live in Washington, D.C. He serves on President Obama’s Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities. And he’s Vice President of Strategic Partnerships at the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Institute, a political action committee that supports LBGT candidates. He’s also a son, a world traveler, and a bit of a comedian.

Walker shared a message with Law School students in a Sept. 28 lunchtime talk that he shares with the gay politicians he works with: You must be whoever you really are. The things that make you different, or give you minority status, should not be hidden, but rather “points of pride.”

“They are part of who you are. They’re in your DNA,” Walker said to a full room of students, many of them members of the Black Law Students Association and/or OutLaw, the LGBT group at the Law School. Those groups and the Office of the Dean of Students sponsored Walker’s talk.

“They’re not negative. They bring out your authentic self.”

Walker pointed out that when a candidate stays closeted about his or her sexuality, someone always knows the truth. And then, he asked, what message does that send about the candidate? “If you lie about that, you’re probably going to lie about something else.”

He told the students to surround themselves with “mirrors,