BEST STRAIGHT ALLY
Whether she was puckering up with a woman for a good cause or publicly comparing current marriage laws to apartheid, the smart, beautiful actress used her high-profile to our advantage and maintained her status as our loyal friend in 2009.
MOST SURPRISING COMING-OUTClementine Ford
After a couple of false starts (see Diva and TV Guide) The L Word‘s Clementine Ford officially declared herself "out" (making her mom, Cybill Shepherd, "proud and happy") and confirmed her relationship with rock producer Linda Perry. As a result, The Young and the Restless probably picked up a few extra lesbian viewers when Ford joined the cast.
"Meredith Baxter – I am apparently the only gay person who did not realize she was gay." (Dorothy Snarker)
LEAST SURPRISING COMING-OUT
The actress who made her mark as one of America’s pre-eminent TV moms on the popular ’80s sitcom Family Ties came out publicly as a lesbian earlier this year at 62.
"Meredith Baxter. Only because I already knew; she was never really in the closet."(Dara Nai)
"Kelly McGillis. A ‘duh’ is deserved, but I respect her immensely for finally speaking about it publicly." (Trish Bendix)
BEST OUT ACTRESS ON TELEVISION (AMERICAN)
Dara Nai: Jane "How-will-I-ever-buy-my-hovercraft" Lynch. No contest.
LESBIAN COUPLE OF THE YEAR (INTERNATIONAL)
Katja Nyberg and Gro Hammerseng
The world of women’s elite sports is a surprisingly homophobic place, but Gro Hammerseng and Katja Nyberg — who are taking home our international title for the second year in a row — live as an affectionate, supportive, openly gay couple, and in doing so have earned themselves a legion of fans.
Inex watches chose Hammerseng as the face of their 2009 ad campaign. Equally impressive — though slightly less profitable — she was the highest jumper on AfterEllen.com’s 2009 Hot List, landing a place in the top ten.
Both Hammerseng and Nyberg are members of the Danish handball club FC Midtjylland Håndboldm, and though they had to sit out 2009′s World Championship due to injuries, they still captured our hearts.
Hammerseng even decided to take some time off from the Norwegian National Team this year. Hopefully, they’re just resting up for the 2010 European Championship. A victory there might just ensure an Hammerseng/Nyberg Visibility Awards three-peat.