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UW-Milwaukee Libraries LGBT Collection Receives Major Donation

July 8, 2014

Local philanthropist Will Radler has donated $65,000 to the UWM Libraries' LGBT Collection in honor of fellow philanthropist Joseph Pabst. Cream City Foundation will facilitate the donation.

Radler chose to honor Pabst in recognition of Pabst's own support of the LGBT community, including his significant contributions to the Libraries' LGBT Collection. In 2008, Pabst established the Libraries LGBT Outreach History Endowment and followed with a substantial planned gift.

"This is a stunning donation from Will Radner to the UWM Libraries," says Michael Doylen, Assistant Director of the Libraries and Head of Archives. "It will enable Archives and Special Collections to do more with the LGBT history collection than we could do with existing funds. We're incredibly impressed by Will’s generosity and think this is just wonderful!"

The UWM Libraries' LGBT Collection was established to preserve and make widely accessible the recorded history of LGBT life and culture, particularly that of the Milwaukee area.

Most of the local holdings date from the period following the Stonewall Riots in 1969, although some provide glimpses of the lives of gay men and lesbians following WWII through the 1960s.

Collections from the 1970s provide evidence of the local Gay and Lesbian Liberation Movement and the gradual emergence of groups within business, sports, theater, health care, and the media. Documentation from the 1980s show the community's development in the face of the AIDS crisis amd the mounting opposition from the New Right. In the 1990s and early years of the twenty-first century, debates about military service and marriage equity became more prominent.

For more information about the Collection, contact Michael Doylen at or Max Yela, Special Collections Head, at

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