Timeline of LGBT accomplishments in the United States

Mary Pautsch

Two men who were students at Iowa State filed an application for marriage in Des Moines on Aug. 30, 2007, two hours after Polk County District Court ruled in favor of Varnum v. Brien.

The case of Varnum v. Brien brought suit in 2005, fighting for the position that denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples violated liberty and equal protection clauses in Iowa’s state constitution.

The ruling was appealed Aug. 31, 2007, but the Iowa State students had already had the three-day waiting period for the marriage to become official waived. They were the only couple to get legally married in the 24-hour period before the ruling was appealed.

On the anniversary of this initial ruling, take a look at how far LGBT accomplishments have come in the last 10 years:

Fall 2008: Iowa State hired the first full-time professional coordinator for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Student Services (LGBTSS, now named The Center), Marissa Klousie.

April 3, 2009: Iowa Supreme Court unanimously ruled that gay marriage be legal in the state of Iowa. Iowa was the fourth state to legalize same-sex marriage in the U.S.

June 29, 2009: President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama hosted the first LGBT Pride Month reception at the White House, honoring the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. President Obama made a note of keeping the tradition of declaring June to be Pride Month for both of his terms. June was first named Pride Month by President Bill Clinton.

Sept. 20, 2011: The ban for openly lesbian and gay individuals to serve in the military, commonly known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” is lifted.

May 9, 2012: President Obama became the first sitting president to publicly support same-sex marriage.

Sept. 4, 2012: The Democratic Party publicly and officially supported gay marriage at the Democratic National Convention (DNC).

June 3, 2014: Laverne Cox, a transgender actress and activist known for her role as Sophia on “Orange is the New Black”, won Glamour’s Woman of the Year award. Cox also has won Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards in 2015 and 2016 for outstanding performance in an ensemble.

June 26, 2015: The United States Supreme Court ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage, making it legal across the country.

July 15, 2015: Caitlyn Jenner received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYs. Jenner publicly came out as a transgender woman earlier in the year.

June 30, 2016: Military service members can no longer be discharged, denied reenlistment or denied continuation of service due to identifying as transgender.

April 4, 2017: It is ruled that the Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination against LGBT employees by the 7th Circuit Court.

June 27, 2017: Residents of the District of Columbia are able to choose a gender-neutral option for driver’s licenses and identification cards. Instead of selecting male or female, an X can now be in place of gender.

Aug. 28, 2017: The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit to sue President Donald Trump over the reinstated military ban on transgender people.