The life of civil rights leader Harvey Milk will be celebrated on May 22. Milk was the first openly-gay person ever elected to public office in California, serving on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
During Milk’s political career, he successfully helped passed gay-right ordinances in San Francisco, and was instrumental in helping the gay community harness their collective political power within the city. Milk’s bravery in challenging the city’s power structure and his visionary leadership within the gay community make him one of the most celebrated figures in San Francisco history.
Learn More About His Legacy
Harvey Milk (along with San Francisco mayor George Moscone) was murdered in city hall on November 27, 1978. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009.
Harvey Milk’s life and legacy can be explored in such works as Randy Shilts’ book The Mayor of Castro Street and the Academy Award-winning documentary The Times of Harvey Milk. Sean Penn won a Best Actor Academy Award for his portrayal of Harvey Milk in the 2009 movie, Milk.