The Fight For Equality: 7 LGBT Rights Heroes Of 2013

Pope Francis

Meet the key players who made strides in the battle for marriage equality this year.

6. Barack Obama
Perhaps the president of the United States hasn't done the grunt work within this fight, but like the Pope, his input says a lot and continues to make waves.

In 2012, President Obama publically gave his official endorsement that he believed same sex couples should be able to get married. This year his support continued as he both praised the evolution and admitted in his inaugural speech that there was still much more work to be done: "Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law — for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well."

7. Mary Cheney
It may seem strange to have a Cheney on this list, but considering Mary’s brazenness to buck the Republican upbringing by her father, former U.S. VP Dick, and her attempt to take down her sister, Liz, Mary deserves some recognition.

Despite her sister being a married lesbian, Liz, who's running for the State Senate in Wyoming is standing strongly on her opposition to gay marriage. Mary, not having that hate talk, took to Facebook to "attack" (their father's words) Liz, stating: "Liz — this isn't just an issue on which we disagree — you're just wrong — and on the wrong side of history." Apparently Liz needs to have a heart-to-heart with Rob Portman so she can get her priorities in order.

In an end-of-year infographic compiled by the American foundation of Equal Rights, statistics show that the amount of support of gay marriage is "unprecedented" — with 131 Republican leaders, 54 U.S. Senators and 58 percent of Americans giving same-sex marriage a high five. But as President Obama pointed out, this "journey is not complete," so it will be exciting to see where 2014 takes us.