“Look into their eyes”: portrait exhibit presents real people behind the letters LGBTQ+

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10/18/2021

Around 1979, Dr. Nancey Johnson Bookstein was outed by a fellow faculty member on the quad of the CU School of Medicine. The woman asked her “Well, how’s it like to be gay?” “We weren’t alone, and I hadn’t told her. And I was mortified. And I was actually afraid of losing my job,” Johnson Bookstein said at the opening reception of Eye to Eye: Portraits of Pride, Strength, Beauty at the same school where she went on to work as an associate professor of physical therapy for 38 years. She and others spoke of the many ways they and others in the LGBTQ+ community were stigmatized and ostracized. They were separated from their partners at the emergency room in the middle of a crisis, asked humiliating questions and often had to hide their identities to keep their jobs and reputations.

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