David Coss) Ma9or of the Cit9 of Santa Fe
Buckle Donated by Dan's Boots & Saddles
The New Mexico Gay Rodeo Association would not have been able to move the Zia Regional Rodeo to Santa Fe without the support of the City Different under the progressive leadership of Mayor David Coss.
Mayor Coss's has raised the bench mark for other cities by improving the quality of life for ali Santa Feans and, weather GLBT or straight, with the enactment of the Santa Fe Living Wage Ordinance, Neighborhood Bill of Rights and Santa Fe Homes which requires ali new developments in the city to include thirty-percent affordable housing.
ln March of this year, he sponsored a non-binding resolution declaring that there is nothing that prohibits marriage equality in New Mexico; the only state in the country that does not either explicitly recognize same-sex relationships through marriagè or civil unions or ban recognition of same-sex relationships by statute or constitutional amendment. At the press conference on this resolution, he related how marriage equality affects his and his daughter's lives, "As a dad, I'd just like to walk her dlown the aisle sorne day and 1 will never get to do that if we don't move on these issues in Santa Fe," he said. "Santa Fe is ready. New Mexico is ready, 1 know. Our country is ready to move on this."
For over 20 years, Dan Johnson, manager of Sidewinders Bar, has been involved with gay rodeo. His instrumental support for gay rodeo and in particular within NMGRA, earned him the 2007 Zia Regional Rodeo Grand Marshall title. Since opening the first Sidewinders Bar in Palm Springs in 2001 and the second one in Albuquerque in 2005, Dan and his partner Mikey Spencer sponsored many NMGRA contestants to compete in IGRA sanctioned rodeos. They have also promoted gay rodeo by sponsoring events buckles. He organized and sponsored other events at Sidewinders to raise money for local charities such as AIDS services, shelters and food banks in addition to participating in GLBT events throughout the year in Albuquerque; earning them several IGRA and community awards.
Dan was originally a member of Golden State Gay Rodeo Association (GSGRA) beginning in 1984. He is very active in their annual rodeo events and was Treasurer of GSGRA - Greater Palm Springs Area in 2004. He was elected as NMGRA Treasurer for 2008.
Upon taking ownership of Sidewinders (formerly the Ranch) in June 2005, he has given much of his efforts and financial support to the success of NMGRA and the Zia Regional Rodeo including being the Arena Sponsor from 2006 - 2010. He also made the bar more hospitable to women, a key factor in NMGRA choosing to make Sidewinders their home bar. Dan retired and moved back to California after the death of his long term partnerm Mikey Spencer. Dan Passed away in the fall of 2012.