Katie Urbanek

In 1979, when Katie Urbanek’s son came out to her by giving her Don Clark’s book Loving Someone Gay, her initial response was to exclaim, “No, not that!” and throw the book across the room—but her mother’s heart was fiercely protective. As Katie later put it, “No one was going to hurt my son.” In 1981 Katie and her husband Harry helped establish PFLAG at a national level. When the Urbaneks arrived in Spokane in 1983, they brought their commitment to gay rights with them. She was born in Kansas in 1924.