Johnna Ossie



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Lois Galgay Reckitt was born and raised in Massachusetts. She attended Brandeis University and then Boston University for her graduate degree. After college, she married a man who was in the Coast Guard. They moved to South Portland to the house she still lives in today. She came out at age 33 when she was deeply entrenched in the growing women's movement. She had a rocky divorce with her self-proclaimed feminist husband who blackmailed her when he found out she was a lesbian. In 1971 she became the treasurer for the first National Organization for Women (NOW) chapter in Maine. In the 80s she worked for the National Organization for Women in Washington, DC. She was one of the founding board members of the Human Rights Campaign Fund, and in that role helped to push for federal money for AIDS research, and to create National Coming Out Day. She worked as executive director at Family Crisis Services in Portland for 37 years helping people in domestic violence situations. Now a member of the Maine State Legislature, she works to pass bills that address issues such as human trafficking, gay conversion therapy, and gay rights. Lois has been married to her wife, Lynn, for 15 years.


Please cite as: Querying the Past: LGBTQ Maine Oral History Project Collection, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer+ Collection, Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine, University of Southern Maine Libraries.

For more information about the Querying the Past: Maine LGBTQ Oral History Project, please contact Dr. Wendy Chapkis.


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Portland, Maine


Keywords: Family of origin, Brandeis, Boston University, Portland, Maine, NOW, National Organization for Women, Human Rights Campaign Fund, HRC, political activism, HIV/AIDS, Jean O'Leary, Reagan, Gay Rights, Domestic Violence Advocacy, Family Crisis Services, Maine Women's Lobby, Maine State Legislature.


History of Gender | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Oral History | Women's Studies

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Reckitt, Lois Galgay



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