Hosted by Thomas F. Coleman
Focusing on Freedom & Justice
Feature Story - Video - Audio
Episode 2 -- Released on August 1, 2021
The Domino Effect: My Life as an Advocate
This premiere episode of the podcast series introduces the host, Thomas F. Coleman, to the audience. During the show, Tom has a conversation with Diane Coleman-Rogers, his sister and long-time board member of Spectrum Institute. They take a virtual walk down memory lane together, reminiscing about Tom's life growing up in Ferndale, Michigan, his entry into law school in Detroit, and his move to Los Angeles where he began his lifetime role as a legal advocate at Loyola Law School. They discuss the phases of Tom's advocacy for various causes -- from his focus on gay rights and sexual civil liberties in the 1970s, to privacy rights, hate crimes, domestic partner benefits and recognition of family diversity in the 1980s, and then on to the rights of single people during the next two decades . . . with an unexpected adventure for a few years exposing injustices to troubled teenagers by an industry that abducted and confined them in private boot camps and boarding schools. This era ended with the publication in 2009 of The Domino Effect, a book of Tom's memoirs as an equal rights advocate.
(Podcast Home Page)
For his 50th high school reunion, Coleman wrote a book about his life in Ferndale (left). A 1978 issue of the Sexual Law Reporter. (right)
Volunteers staffed the Sexual Law Reporter, a legal periodical which educated attorneys and judges about sexual civil liberties (1975-1979)
Tom's advocacy resulted in enactment of the first hate crime law in the nation to include age, disability, and sexual orientation.
Coleman used the media to promote respect for family diversity and benefits for domestic partners.
Staff at the American Association of Single People promoted singles' rights. (Staff meeting in 2001)
Tom pitched the singles' rights story to a reporter at BusinessWeek and it ended up on the cover. (2003)
The Emancipation Project helped close down a billion dollar industry trafficking in abused teenagers
At a reception for the release of The Domino Effect in 2009, Coleman acknowledged each guest who participated in his civil rights adventures.
Guests at the book reception applauded each other after Coleman described their contributions to various civil rights causes.