Michael Emanuel Rajner’s coming out process began in Los Angeles as a twenty-something conservative.

“I was an aide to a Republican state senator and an insurance underwriter,” Rajner recalled. “I was a Catholic then and dealing with a lot of shame. It was an evolving process.”

Rajner, now 43, is a leading social justice activist, who calls Wilton Manors home. The tall Brooklyn, N.Y. native admits to struggling with his role as an agent of change.

“As an activist, I don’t think you are ever satisfied or happy because there is always something next,” he said.

Rajner wears many hats in the LGBT community and serves on the United States PLHIV (People Living With HIV) Caucus, a national strategy network of individuals, groups and organizations brought together to fight the disease. He is also active in Florida politics and was one of the first Democrats from the LGBT community to receive a sit down interview with gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist.

Speaking from the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force’s “Creating Change” Conference in Houston, Texas, Rajner said he felt like a senior advisor.

“It’s great to see so many young people here all engaging and learning for their communities,” he said.

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