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San Diego AIDS Care Pioneer Dead at 76

San Diego AIDS Care Pioneer Dead at 76


Gloria Johnson, a San Diego County social worker for 30 years, was one of the first to work in the county's AIDS Case Management Program.

Gloria Johnson, one of the first San Diego County social workers to assist people with HIV or AIDS through the county’s AIDS Case Management Program, died Sunday. She was 76.

Johnson was a county social worker for 30 years, retiring in 2000, the San Diego Gay & Lesbian News reports. She was also a longtime activist for women’s and LGBT rights, along with other social justice causes, and her volunteer work continued almost to the time of her death.

She was the first out gay or lesbian person elected to the San Diego Democratic Central Committee, where she held numerous posts, and she was a board member and past president of the local Democratic LGBT group now known as San Diego Democrats for Equality. She was a delegate to the 1996 and 2000 Democratic National Conventions, and she served on the campaign staffs of several candidates.

She had been president of the local chapter of the National Organization for Women and director of NOW’s 1988 Lesbian Rights Conference. In the 1980s she was a founding member of the Lesbian Rights Task Force. She was inducted into the San Diego Women’s Hall of Fame in 2003. Watch a video produced for the induction ceremony below.

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