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Community Pioneers
Creators of Washington, DC's Gay Community

Robert Miailovich (2012 awardee)  

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Keith Monroe Clark

I get a giggle when I Google my name and see the many references to me, divided between my professional work as an agency spokesperson on bank matters and my extracurricular work as a gay Catholic advocate, especially the conservative religious site that includes me on their list of bad guys.

Robert Miailovich was born and raised in San Francisco. He attended the Graduate School of Business at the University of California (Berkeley) and the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Washington. He worked for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation from 1963 to 1996, developing and implementing banking policies and procedures. He was transferred by the agency to Washington, DC, in 1975.

Upon his arrival in DC, Bob and a friend got hold of a list of gay bars and drove around trying to locate them. “It was outside one of those bars,” Bob says, “that I found a flyer on my car windshield announcing a Dignity/Washington event, and I found what became my main place of activity.” 

For many years, Bob has served Dignity/Washington – a supportive community of LGBT Catholics and other Christians – in various significant positions. He began as a bartender at a social event.  He later was appointed a regional representative and a delegate to the national convention. In time, Bob rose to become the organization’s president. 

Bob has also served Dignity on the national level.  He became the president of Dignity/USA, and, in that position, he represented the group on various national religious leadership roundtables and was active in Catholic Organizations for Renewal.

Over the years, Bob has been associated with various other DC LGBT organizations, serving many of them as treasurer and as a member of the board of directors.  These groups include: the Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League (SMYAL); the New Ways Ministry; DC Different Drummers; the Northern Virginia AIDS Ministry; and Among Friends. Bob believes that his primary obligation has been to make sure that these groups have sound operational and financial management. 

Bob has written about gay, usually Catholic, events in the Washington Catholic Standard, the Washington Blade, and the New York Times.

Noting that much of his work for Dignity has involved “speeches, dinners, protest marches, awards, receptions, fundraisers, and conferences,” Bob points out that these activities “are all designed to bring people together and to give witness to the righteousness of our cause.  I try to be part of that presence.”