The design of the official US postage stamp featuring Harvey Milk was revealed on April 2.
The stamp, which was announced in the fall of 2013, will be issued on May 22—Harvey Milk Day. It features a black and white photo of Milk, whose election to the San Francisco board of supervisors in 1977 made him the first openly gay person in California to be elected to a public office. Nearly forty years later, he will be setting another record, as the first openly gay elected official to be depicted on US postage.
Harvey Milk, a Navy veteran, was known to San Francisco as a businessman and openly gay community activist when he was elected to the board of supervisors in 1977. He and San Francisco mayor George Moscone were shot to death on November 28, 1978 by a former board colleague, Dan White. Despite only being in office for eleven months, Milk was able to pass a then-radical gay rights ordinance for the city.
Where the stamp will debut has yet to be decided, but potential locations include Washington, DC as well as San Francisco.
The stamp will be in the category of “Forever Stamps,” meaning that it will remain valid without additional postage even when postage fees have increased since its issue. As such, the word “forever” is emblazoned on the side of Milk’s portrait.
The 2008 picture “Milk,” a biography of his career from his fortieth birthday to his death at forty-eight, won Academy Awards for screenwriter Dustin Lance Black and actor Sean Penn.