This year packed some pretty big moments for the LGBT community, especially in the entertainment, political and business world. From CEOs to veteran and rookie athletes, 2014 has been met with a good deal of coming-out stories and indeed, the visibility matters. As the year winds down, we look back on a few big names who came out in 2014 and going into 2015, we hope to continuing hearing coming-out stories that inspire us.
Raven-Symone – Though it took a while for this child star to officially confirm, Raven-Symone, known for her roles in The Cosby Show and Disney’s That’s So Raven and The Cheetah Girls, broke the news that she was happily in a relationship with a woman on Oprah’s Where Are They Now television segment this year. But even though she has confirmed, she still says she doesn’t want to be labeled “gay.” As a matter of fact, she says she doesn’t want to be labeled at all.
Sam Smith – Sam Smith won the hearts of many in 2014. With two hits in line this year (“Stay With Me” and Disclosure’s “Latch”), Smith proved to be a true contender in the music industry. He also openly spoke about the influence his love for a man had on many of the lyrics he’d written for some of his hits.
Tim Cook – Cook’s coming out was surely monumental. The CEO of Apple had faced many rumors, but after years of speculation, Cook cleared everything up, coming out in an op-ed in Bloomberg Businessweek in October. His announcement was very inspiring, though met by some criticism. All in all, we hope he continues to be an inspiration for many.
Michael Sam – Sam arguably made the biggest splash this year. The 2013 SEC Defensive Player of the Year came out during preseason of his final season at the University of Missouri. Soon after he came out on a national scale, becoming the first openly gay football player to be drafted into the NFL.
Lauren Morelli – This coming out story was one we covered when it first hit the streets. The news broke during Morelli’s writing for the popular Netflix series Orange Is the New Black. Since, she’s divorced her husband and is currently an item with OITNB star Samira Wiley, who plays the character Poussey on the hit show.
Dale Scott – This year, Dale Scott became the first openly gay umpire in Major League Baseball history. Scott revealed the news through a Referee Magazine profile when the editor asked for an off-the-field photo for the article. He sent one of him and his partner of 28 years. Scott told Out Sports, “I think Major League Baseball has proven that it certainly isn’t an issue with them.”
Jim Ferlo – Pennsylvania Senator Jim Ferlo came out this September, casually announcing, “I’m gay.” He confirmed what he says hundreds already knew during a rally in support of updating the state’s hate crime law. He also said, “Get over it. I lobe it. It’s a great life.” Indeed it is!
Ellen Page – Remember that 2007 comedy-drama we all know and love – Juno? Well, earlier this year in February, the film’s star Ellen Page declared at the Human Rights Campaign’s “Time to Thrive” conference for LGBT youth in Las Vegas that she was indeed one of them. “I’m here today because I am gay,” she announced. She continues to strive to make a difference in the LGBT community today.
Who’s coming out shocked you the most?
news, coming out stories, community, 2014