Blackwell Library

About the Author

In 1998, Judy Shepard lost her son, Matthew, to a murder motivated by anti-gay hate. Turning tragedy into a crusade for justice, and determined to prevent Matthew's fate from befalling others, she established The Matthew Shepard Foundation to help carry on his legacy.

Activist speaker Judy Shepard has appeared in two Human Rights Campaign advertisements urging an end to anti-gay violence and promoting a greater understanding of gay issues. She is also actively involved with Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). In this capacity, she has written an open letter to schools across the country urging officials to make schools safer for gay students by promoting tolerance and diversity.

Most recently, Judy Shepard authored the New York Times best-selling book, The Meaning of Matthew: My Son's Murder in Laramie, and a World Transformed, a moving, intimate look at how her life, and the entire fight for equal rights, changed when her son was killed.