Kate Brown, Oregon's secretary of state, is in line to replace Democratic Gov. John Kitzhaber when he steps down Wednesday amid an ethics scandal. Brown, serving her second term after many years in the legislature, lives in Portland with her husband and two stepchildren and has been open throughout her political career about being bisexual.
Her progress has been followed closely by bisexual activists across the country, including Ellyn Ruthstrom, who now serves on the board of Boston-based Bisexual Resource Center after 10 years as its president.
Thousands of people gathered in front of a renowned Vienna cafe to demonstrate against the expulsion of a kissing lesbian couple.
Police estimated around 2,000 people participated in the protest on Jan. 16, forcing the closure of one downtown street. Some of the demonstrators exchanged long kisses.
A judge has decided the state of Washington has the authority to bring a consumer protection lawsuit against a florist who refused to provide flowers for a gay wedding.
Benton County Superior Court Judge Alex Ekstrom also ruled recently that the owner of the Richland, Washington, flower shop can be held personally liable for violating the Consumer Protection Act.
Apple chief executive Tim Cook, the first openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company, is donating money to help fund a gay rights initiative in his native Alabama and two other Southern states, organizers said.
The amount of Cook's contribution to the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign wasn't disclosed, but the advocacy organization called it "substantial." Organizers said it would help fund a three-year, $8.5 million campaign launched in April in Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi.
Openly gay U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan of Wisconsin will serve another two-year term. As will openly LGBT U.S. Reps. Mark Takano of California, Jared Polis of Colorado, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Sean Patrick Maloney of New York and David Cicilline of Rhode Island.
Also, on Election Day, lesbian Maura Healey won her historic race for attorney general in Massachusetts.