Love Warriors

Meet the eight plaintiff couples in the ACLUís lawsuit to bring marriage equality to Wisconsin

1. Judi Trampf and Katy Henying, Madison

Judi, 53, and Katy, 51, met in college at the Girl Scout National Center in Wyoming. In July, they’ll celebrate their 25th anniversary. Both work at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, where Judi is Director of Human Resources and Diversity and Katy is Dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies.

2. Johannes Wallmann and Keith Borden, Madison

Johannes, 39, and Keith, 40, have been together for 15 years. Johannes is a music professor at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Keith is a classically trained singer and yoga instructor. They met in New York City in 1998. Johannes says, “Keith is incredibly kind. He inspires me to try to be a kinder, better person.”

3. Salud Garcia and Pam Kleiss, Madison

Salud, 50, and Pam, 49, were both working for the American Association of Retired Persons—Pam in Seattle and Salud in California—when they met. Pam recalls, “The moment I met her, I was totally smitten.” They have now been together for 18 years.

4. Carol Schumacher and Virginia Wolf, Eau Claire

Carol, 60, and Virginia, 74, have been together 38 years, since their very first date in 1975. They were the first couple to join the Eau Claire domestic partner registry in 2009 and got married on their anniversary in December by a judge in Minnesota. As Virginia puts it, “We’ve been inching towards matrimony for 38 years!”

5. Roy Badger and Garth Wangemann, Milwaukee

Roy, 56, and Garth, 58, have been together 37 years. Roy, who’s lived in Wisconsin since age 12, has worked as an editor at UWM for 32 years. Garth, a native Wisconsinite, was laid off last spring from his customer service position but is temping for his old employer as he looks for a new job. The couple attends a United Church of Christ church and has two dogs, Daisy and Winston.

6. Charvonne Kemp and Marie Carlson, Milwaukee

Charvonne, 43, and Marie, 48, have been partners more than seven years and raised two sons together. Together they’ve raised Alexander, 21, and Christopher, 11. Charvonne and Marie were active in the PTA at Christopher’s school, holding offices and Charvonne serving twice on search committees to pick new principals.

7. Kami Young and Karina Willes, West Milwaukee

Kami, 36, and Karina, 44, have been together for 13 years. They registered as domestic partners in 2009 and were legally married in 2013 in Minnesota. Karina surprised herself when she cried through the entire ceremony. “You get so used to being a second-class citizen that when you’re not anymore, it’s overwhelming.”

8. Bill Hurtubise and Dean Palmer, Racine

Bill and Dean, both 40, live in Racine with their children, ages 5, 4, and 2. Bill grew up in Racine, and commutes to Chicago so that he, Dean, and their kids can live near family, friends, and their church. Dean lived in St. Louis when they met, and moved to Racine a few months after their first visit. Shortly after he arrived, he proposed.