Friday, June 16, 2000

Web Extra: International Mr. Leather 2000 Mike Taylor

(Leather Life column published on Lavender Magazine website, Issue #132, June 16, 2000)


Mike Taylor, Mr. Heartland Leather 2000, is the new International Mr. Leather 2000. Taylor is sponsored by Heartland Leather Productions and TriState Leather of Columbus, OH. He is a resident of Cincinnati, OH and works for Procter & Gamble in marketing. He regularly schedules and participates in frequent fundraising events for the Leather Archives & Museum and has helped develop the “S&M Reform School,” a teaching event hosted by the Serpent Bar in Cincinnati that reaches out to those less familiar with leather through live demonstrations and discussions.

Asked about his priorities for the coming year, Taylor responded: “Continuing passing of the knowledge down to the next generation. We’ll use the labels of old guard and new guard, that’s what we’ve chosen, but to continue to figure out ways to make connections through learning, play, training, and through community events like IML—to continue the momentum of bringing all our different groups together.” He also plans to continue to raise funds to pay off the mortgage on the Leather Archives & Museum’s new home.

Taylor is an articulate and passionate speaker, and when asked about reaching out to the broader GLBT communities, his response was quotable: “This community has always been outlaw, and it’s always been a leader. That means it stands alone, and it’s always gonna be that way, and don’t kid yourself. Yes, we will make bonds with our other brothers and sisters, and I hope they sometime realize when the right wing puts us in a camp, it’s not gonna matter if you’re in Banana Republic khakis, or if you’re in leather—we’re all going into the camp.”

The text of the speech Taylor delivered during the IML contest is available on the web at

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