100 Women We Love 2015

We are thrilled to present this year’s 100 Women We Love—an incredibly diverse group of out entertainers, athletes, artists, activists, business leaders and elected officials.


Kelly Cogswell was a member of the Lesbian Avengers, a direct action group formed in 1992 in New York City. During their most active years, they demonstrated against a radio station, a women´s magazine and the Board of Ed, even eating fire to bring attention to their cause. Cogswell wrote about the group, and her romance with co-founder Ana Maria Simo, in her 2014 memoir Eating Fire: My Life as a Lesbian Avenger. She also began recording the group´s history in 2010 for The Lesbian Avenger Documentary Project (lesbianavengers.com). “I went online to check some facts about the group, and there was almost nothing there,” she says. “We´d pretty much been erased, which was ironic considering that the Lesbian Avengers were all about visibility. And the Avengers weren´t small. We had 60 chapters all over the world. … My memoir grew out of that project, thinking about the Lesbian Avengers, why we started, and how our history was intertwined with everybody else that has had to step out into the street to demand their rights. Or even celebrate.” In 1993, the Avengers founded the Dyke March, which survives, says Cogswell, because we continue to need the visibility it provides. “We´re still hungry for opportunities to claim public space and be seen as ourselves.” -GH

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