513-281-5945 • Sunday Worship: 11:00am – 12:00pm

Del Martin & Phyllis Lyons

Feminist and LGBT rights activists; Longtime partners

Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon had been together for three years when they cofounded the Daughters of Bilitis, the first social and political organization for lesbians in the United States, in San Francisco in 1955. They joined the National Organization for Women (NOW) as the first lesbian couple to do so, and Lyon was the first open lesbian elected to its national board. Both women worked to form the Council on Religion and the Homosexual to persuade ministers to accept homosexuals into churches, and used their influence to decriminalize homosexuality in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

After more than 50 years together, Martin and Lyon were married on February 12, 2004, but that marriage was voided by the California Supreme Court that August. They married again on June 16, 2008, in the first same-sex wedding to take place in San Francisco after a subsequent California Supreme Court decision legalized same-sex marriage in California.

"Del: “We were just gonna’ meet some lesbians.” Phyllis: “…And start a social club…And where would we have gotten the idea about starting a national movement in September of 1955. Nowhere.” - Del Martin; Phyllis Lyons"

Submitted by our members in 2020.