After the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor in 2013 struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, longtime HRC member Jim Obergefell and his now late husband John Arthur filed a lawsuit to obtain legal recognition of their marriage by their home state of Ohio.
Jim, who fought for recognition of his marriage to John in Ohio so he could be listed on his death certificate, joined plaintiffs from Ohio and other Sixth Circuit states: Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee. His co-plaintiffs included David Michener & William Herbert Ives and Robert Grunn (Obergefell v. Katich); Nicole Yorksmith & Pamela Yorksmith, Joseph J. Vitale & Robert Talmas, Brittani Henry & Brittni Rogers and Kelly Noe & Kelly McCraken (Henry v. Wymyslo); Gregory Bourke & Michael DeLeon, Randell Johnson & Paul Campion, Jimmy Meade & Luther Barlowe, Kimberly Franklin & Tamera Boyd (Bourke v. Beshear); Maurice Blanchard & Dominique James and Timothy Love & Lawrence Ysunza (Love v. Beshear); Joy "Johno" Espejo & Matthew Mansell, Kellie Miller & Vanessa DeVillez, Sergeant Ijpe DeKoe & Thomas Kostura, and Valeria Tanco & Sophia Jesty (Tanco v. Haslam); and April DeBoer & Jayne Rowse (DeBoer v. Snyder).
It did not take long for Jim’s name to earn its spot in the history books after becoming the named plaintiff in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court case that brought nationwide marriage equality to the United States on June 26, 2015 - exactly two years after the Windsor decision - and broke down barriers standing in the way of loving and committed same-sex couples who wished to be married.
Following the ruling, Jim took another courageous step and put the story of his journey on paper. On June 14, 2016, Jim, along with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Debbie Cenziper, released Love Wins: The Lovers and Lawyers Who Fought the Landmark Case for Marriage Equality.
Love Wins chronicles the death of Jim’s husband and his journey leading up to the fight at the Supreme Court, as well all of the players behind the scenes that made this unprecedented victory a reality.
Over the next few months, Jim will hit the road for several book signings across the country. Don’t miss the chance to purchase your own copy of Love Wins and attend a book signing with Obergefell.
July 17 | 7:00 p.m. | Sandusky State Theatre, Sandusky, OH
July 18 | 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. | Loganberry Books, Shaker Heights, OH
July 25 | 2:30 - 4:00 p.m. | National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia, PA
August 9 | 5:00 p.m. | La Posada de Santa Fe, Santa Fe, NM
August 18 | 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. | Villa Sanctuary, Milford, OH