“I just wanted to acknowledge him, because he helped shape how I think about so many of these issues, and those sort of quiet heroes that sometimes don’t get acknowledged,” Obama said of Lawrence Goldyn, one of his college professors at Occidental College.

“I want to just talk a little bit about Lawrence,” Obama said. “When I went in as a freshman — this is 1979 at Occidental College — and according to Lawrence, I guess there were maybe a couple of other gay professors, but they weren’t wildly open about it,” Obama said. “Lawrence was not shy.

“I took a class from him, and because he was one of the young professors, we became really good friends,” Obama said. “But also, he was the first openly gay person that I knew who was unapologetic, who stood his ground.

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