GLBT Office thanks IU, community for support


Sophomore Barton Girdwood stands to receive a 2010 GLBT "Spirit" Award on Monday in State Room East. The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Student Support Services Office presented the awards to students, faculty, and staff who are active in the GLBT community at IU. Girdwood works with groups such as Rethinking Incarceration and Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Equality. Rabi Abonour Buy Photos

On Monday, the “Spirit” Award of the GLBT office went to a broader category of recipients.

After more than a month’s selection process, the office presented the awards to five recipients, including two IU students, one IU faculty member, one IU staff member and the IU Athletics Department.

“Each year, we honor people who work in our spirit but are outside our office,” said Doug Bauder, the coordinator of the GLBT office. “We call them our allies.”

Bauder, who has been the coordinator of the office since 1994 when it was established on campus, said the “Spirit”Award presentation is a simple way of recognizing the different work people have done in the community.

“It’s not a prestigious award in the sense that there is a lot of money behind it,” Bauder said. “It’s not a scholarship, but it’s our way to say we appreciate people on our behalf, wherever they are.”

Among this year’s recipients, Barton Girdwood, a sophomore majoring in religious and gender studies, said he did not know he was nominated until three weeks ago.

“I received an e-mail from the GLBT selection committee saying that I was nominated to get the award, and I felt so honored,” he said.

Four different people nominated Girdwood for his actions in various student organizations on campus.

The award’s selection committee announced Girdwood, along with Chris Kase, as the final student recipients.

The committee, which consisted of four members from the GLBT’s advisory board, determined the winners based on the work they had done to promote GLBT awareness.

The office also gave the awards to Mary Gray, associate professor in the Department of Communication and Culture, and Scott Jones, a volunteer during the IU Department of Theatre and Drama’s production of “Rent.”

The office also recognized the IU Athletics Department for supporting the GLBT community with events throughout the summer and fall.

“People from other universities in the nation always ask me why we can have such an office on campus,” Bauder said. “My answer to that is always simple — with great deal of our supporters and allies.”

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