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Heddy Peña leaves SAVE to join Florida Red & Blue campaign against gay marriage amendment

SAVE news release:

0507052229Political director and former executive director Heddy Peña has left SAVE (Safeguarding American Values for Everyone) to join the Florida Red & Blue campaign to defeat Amendment 2.

Under her leadership, SAVE won landmark civil rights protections for Miami-Dade County's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, including the county's approval of a domestic partner registry and the extension of medical benefits to domestic partners of county employees. Heddy also helped SAVE establish the first "equal benefits" ordinance in the City of Miami Beach and created protections for the transgender residents of Miami Beach.

"It has been an honor to serve the LGBT community and I am pleased that I will be working with my friends at SAVE to meet the challenges that lie ahead" said Heddy.

"Heddy's contributions to SAVE, the LGBT community and all the residents of Miami-Dade County are profound," SAVE Board Chairman Juan Talavera said. "The gains we've made in the past 6 years are a tribute to her passion and leadership. We look forward to collaborating with her in the months and years ahead as we continue to champion equal rights and protections for all."

Heddy leaves SAVE well-positioned in the community, with financial and operational stability and a long-term strategic plan that will guide the organization over the next three years.

"SAVE remains focused on defeating Amendment 2 at the polls on November 4," Talavera said. The deceptively named "marriage protection" amendment to the Florida constitution would roll back hard-won protections for gay and heterosexual couples in communities across the state.

SAVE is spearheading the get-out-the-vote drive in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, working closely with Florida Red and Blue and other organizations to persuade voters to "Say No to Amendment 2."

To strengthen SAVE for the November fight, the board recently expanded its campaign infrastructure with field director Kelly Anthony and field organizer Dave Dodge to recruit and direct SAVE's growing volunteer force.  Attorney and board member Georg Ketelhohn has accepted the appointment of campaign manager to oversee all aspects of the strategy and administration of the "Say No to Amendment 2" initiative.

Businessman Orlando Gonzales continues to serve as interim Executive Director, overseeing day-to-day operations and working with community leaders in a search for a permanent executive director.

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