MP picks unsung heroes of LGBT community

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OPENLY gay MP Greg Barker has helped compile the Independent on Sunday’s 2011 Pink List, which celebrates the unsung heroes and heroines of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

The Battle MP, who left his wife and came out in 2006, was one of 11 judges who sifted through more than 300 names, whittled down from more than 1,500 nominations, to create the annual list.

Mr Barker and his fellow judges, including Welsh rugby star Gareth Thomas, comedian Stephen K Amos and Jane Czyzselska, the editor of leading lesbian magazine DIVA, picked music teacher, trainer and diversity officer Elly Barnes as their number one choice.

The list was revealed in the newspaper last Sunday.

The Independent on Sunday said: “We are immensely grateful to 11 judges who, at the pinnacles of their professions, would have appeared high on the list themselves if they hadn’t asked to opt out.

“Instead, they stepped forward to discuss the names you put forward, and these are the ones they chose.”

In 2007, Mr Barker made his first appearance on the Pink List at number 20.