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Anthony Woods, Openly Gay War Veteran And Congressional Candidate

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Anthony Woods is an Iraq War Veteran and openly gay candidate for Congress.
© Anthony Woods For Congress
Anthony Woods is an Iraq War Veteran and openly gay candidate for the special election to replace Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher in California's 10th congressional district.

Woods, born July 20, 1980, was raised on Travis Air Force Base. He graduated with honors from Vanden High School in 1999 and later the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. As a West Point Dean’s List student, Woods double majored in economics and political science with a minor in computer science.

Anthony Woods was later commissioned in the Army as a second lieutenant in the Armor branch. He volunteered for his first tour in Iraq in June of 2003, returning to the U.S. in January of 2005. Woods commanded a 64 soldier platoon upon his second deployment in July of that same year. He was awarded a bronze star for his services.

Woods began his graduate studies in public policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University after his second tour and was later chosen by the Harvard University faculty to deliver the 2008 Harvard University commencement speech.

Anthony Woods Comes Out:

Woods came out to his commanding officers during his second year at the Kennedy School, violating the U.S. military's don't ask, don't tell policy. He was honorably discharged from the Army in December of 2008 on the grounds of "moral and professional dereliction" and required to repay $35,000—the amount of his scholarship to attend the Kennedy School.

"It's a small price to pay for being honest," Woods said.

After his discharged, Woods began working on the staff of Governor of New York David Paterson.

Anthony Woods For Congress:

The nomination of Congresswoman Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D CA-10) by President Obama to serve as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security left an open seat in Anthony Woods' home district (pending Tauscher's Senate approval). Woods, now a candidate for the vacancy, awaits a special election that is likely to take place later this year.

"I believe we need leaders who will stand up and fight for their own convictions – even if they are not always easy or even popular," Woods says on his campaign website.
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