T.G.R.A. is honored to have Don Baker as Grand Marshal for the 1987 Texas Gay Rodeo. T.G.R.A. chose Mr. Baker for Grand Marshal because of his dedication to the gay population of Texas as plaintiff for the gay community against the Texas sodomy law that went to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Donald F. Baker, plaintiff in the 2 1 . 0 6 legal challenge, is a 39-year-old native of Dallas, Texas. Once a school teacher in Dallas, he is currently employed as a training specialist in computer systems used in aerospace production.
Don has been active in local social and civic affairs since 1975. From 1979 through 1981, he was president of the Dallas Gay Alliance. He has served three consecutive two-year terms as a publicly elected precinct chairman. Don was elected to serve as a Texas delegate to the 1984 Democratic National Convention and served a two-year term on the City of Dallas' Community Development Advisory Board from 1981 through 1982.
During his military service from May 1968 to February 1972, Don worked as a U.S. Naval communications technician during tours of duty in Florida; Bremerhaven, Germany; and Guam. He was honorably discharged with the rank of E-4.
In 1975 Don graduated cum laude from the State University of New York at Cortland. In 1980 he completed an academic fellowship from Southern Methodist University, graduating with a Masters of Education.
Having grown up in a very religious family, Don is currently a member of an Episcopal church in Dallas. As a youth in the Assembly of God Church, he was active in church choral and youth groups.
As a youth, Don was active in school activities, participating in the school choir, band, and track team, and was elected cheerleader his senior year. He was a member of the local Scouting organization for many years during this time.
SPECIAL AWARDS OR RECOGNITIONS