SILVER SPRING, MD---For Mrs. Paulette Goodman, a lifelong journey as a social justice advocate began as a child in horrifying circumstances.
Born in pre-World War II Paris, France, Mrs. Goodman is a survivor of the Holocaust, a tragic time in which she lost family members and close friends.
"As a child, I knew what it was like to be afraid and ostracized. Just going to the movies on Thursday afternoons with my friends, forbidden to Jews, could have meant tragedy for the whole family had I been caught in a roundup out of the theater," described Mrs. Goodman, a resident of Riderwood retirement community in Silver Spring, MD.
Seventy years later, Mrs. Goodman was recognized for her leadership work during a 30th anniversary celebration of the Metro DC Chapter of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG).
Mrs. Goodman is the Founding Mother of the organization, serving as its first president from 1983-88. She then earned the presidency of the national organization for four years, completing the term in 1992.
During an anniversary event on March 17th, she was presented a proclamation from Montgomery County by County Executive Isiah "Ike" Leggett as well as a citation from the State of Maryland presented by Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown.
In addition to her volunteer work with the Metro DC Chapter of PFLAG, she is the co-founder of a PFLAG support group at Riderwood.
Sixty-four years ago, she moved to the United States with family members. "The quest for social justice has taken me all over the country. It has been a motivator throughout my life," noted Mrs. Goodman. "Nothing is more important than family, and that's why my work with an organization as dedicated to social justice as PFLAG is a blessing."
PFLAG is a nonproft, volunteer and community-based organization providing support and education. More information can be found at www.pflagdc.org.