2016 Daniel Pinkham Award Recipient
Janson Wu, Executive Director of GLAD, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, former president of Coro Allegro, and lead attorney in GLAD’s efforts to secure asylum status in the U.S. for Ugandan LGBTQI refugees, will be the recipient of the ninth annual Daniel Pinkham Award. Janson has served as GLAD’s executive director since December 2014, following eight years as a staff attorney and a seven-month tenure as deputy director. During his time at GLAD, Janson has been deeply involved in the breadth of GLAD’s work, including the rights of LGBT elders, family law and parentage, employment benefits, transgender rights, DOMA, and marriage equality. He served on the legal teams of many of GLAD’s significant cases, including the DOMA challenges Gill v. OPM and Pedersen v. OPM, and the successful asylum case of Ugandan activist John Abdallah Wambere. In 2012, in the case In re Madelyn B, Janson successfully argued before New Hampshire’s highest court that a non-biological lesbian mother should be recognized as a parent.
In addition to his litigation, Janson has been extensively involved in GLAD’s legislative and policy work throughout New England. In New Hampshire and Rhode Island, he led GLAD’s coalition work with local advocacy organizations, legislators, and individuals to pass marriage equality in those states.
In 2012, Janson received the David Carliner Award from the American Constitution Society, and in 2011 he was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association. He was also a 21st Century Fellow with the Pipeline Project, which is dedicated to cultivating leadership among LGBT people of color.
Before coming to GLAD, Janson worked as an attorney with Tri-City Community Action Program, a multi-service anti-poverty organization where he provided legal services to low-income people. He also worked as an associate at the litigation law firm of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan in San Francisco. Janson has served on the ABA’s Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and on the Legal Committee of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health.