October 20, 2014 at 2:08 pm EST | by Michael K. Lavers
Gray walks trans advocate down the aisle at wedding

Ruby Corado, Vincent Gray, gay news, Washington Blade

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray, right, walks Ruby Corado down the aisle at her wedding at Unity of Washington in Northwest D.C. on Oct. 18, 2014. (Photo courtesy of Ted Eytan)

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray on Saturday walked transgender rights advocate Ruby Corado down the aisle at her wedding.

Corado, who is executive director of Casa Ruby, an LGBT community center in Columbia Heights with a significant trans and Latino clientele, married David Walker at Unity of Washington in Northwest D.C. in front of more than 100 family, friends and fellow advocates.

“I have long believed that the District’s LGBTQ residents should be treated the same as anyone else in our city, and Ruby Corado has been a committed activist for equal rights in the District for decades,” Gray told the Washington Blade on Monday. “I was thrilled to serve as honorary father of the bride and walk her down the aisle on her wedding day, and I wish all the best to her and her new husband, David.”

Jason Terry of the D.C. Trans Coalition was also a member of the wedding party.

D.C. Center Executive Director David Mariner; LGBT rights advocates Lane Hudson, Consuella Lopez and Christopher Dyer; Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence Chair Paul Tupper and Ugandan activist Nikilas Mawanda were among those who attended the ceremony and reception that followed.

“My whole life, I have been told that I was not supposed to love or be loved,” wrote Corado on her Facebook page on Sunday after she and Walker tied the knot. “I was not supposed to love myself because I was different: Trans, indigenous, dark-haired, immigrant, HIV positive, fat, short, you name it. I was made to believe that no one could love me back because I was different.”

“Yesterday, life proved everyone wrong,” she added. “I love myself more than ever because I am somebody. My husband showed the world that it is okay to love me, even though I am different. My city’s mayor, Vince Gray, walked me down the aisle and showed the world once again that he stands for love.”

Corado met Walker online in 2010. They have been together for two years.

“He’s a very kind man,” said Corado of her husband during the reception. “He’s a very humble man.”

Corado also joked her advocacy is her “first marriage.”

“In order to be with Ruby, I have given up because I’m married to the LGBT community,” she said.

Rev. Abena Peters McCray of Unity Fellowship Church of D.C., who officiated the wedding, made a similar point before Corado and Walker exchanged vows.

“This almost is her second marriage because she is married to her job,” McCray as those gathered inside the church began to laugh. “It’s going to take her and you as her community to remind her that things change a little bit now, that she is marrying David Walker today and that David is her first concern…This new marriage is going to take work, time, commitment and she’s going to learn to split herself from her executive director role and her role as wife and she’s ready for her task.”

Corado and other local advocates have frequently applauded the Gray administration for its support of trans rights.

The mayor in February announced health insurance companies in D.C. must fully cover sex-reassignment surgery and other treatments that allow trans people change their gender. The Department of Employment Services in 2011 launched a jobs program for trans Washingtonians.

Gray in April lost to D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser in the city’s Democratic primary.

Vincent Gray, Ruby Corado, David Walker, gay news, Washington Blade

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray, left, with Ruby Corado and her husband, David Walker, after their wedding at Unity of Washington in Northwest D.C. on Oct. 18, 2014. (Photo courtesy of Ted Eytan)

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

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