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We’re proud to be the nation’s oldest and largest organization helping gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth to reach their full potential. Like many leaders, we were trailblazers. In 1979, life partners and educators on gay and lesbian issues, Dr. Emery Hetrick, a psychiatrist, and Dr. Damien Martin, a professor at New York University, heard the heartbreaking story of a homeless 15-year-old boy who had been beaten and thrown out of his emergency shelter because he was gay.
They were so moved that they gathered a group of concerned adults and created what was then called the Institute for the Protection of Lesbian and Gay Youth (IPLGY) to assist this group of young people who desperately needed support.