Meet Don Yarman!: An RT member profile by Tess Goldwasser

By Tess Goldwasser

Currently, Don’s self-identified role in the GLBTRT is the “cranky old man” on the Stonewall Book Awards Committee. Previously he has been the “fussy intellectual snob” on the Stonewall Book Awards Committee.

As Deputy Director of the Delaware County District Library, he serves the mixed suburban, small town, and rural area north of Columbus (OH). An active member of the Ohio Library Council, he frequently serves on program committees, task forces, and action councils. He is Past Chair of the Management and Administration Division.

He met his partner Michael in graduate school a week after he came out, and they’ve been together for 24 years. According to Don, “A friend once said, ‘Most guys come out and later decide they want a partner. You decided you wanted a partner, so you came out.’”

Don’s passion is knitting. “It’s fantastic!” he said. “You wouldn’t believe how much stupid TV I can watch while productively churning out socks and hats. Currently, I’m obsessed with gloves.”

He is most proud of his reputation for talent-spotting: “I’ve reached a point where I get to hire good people and put them into jobs where they thrive and shine. Once upon a time, I needed to be the star and get the applause myself. Now, I really enjoy matching others with good opportunities or seeing them get recognized.”

If he were an animal, he would be a flying squirrel.

If he could have a dinner party with 5 culturally or historically significant figures, living or dead, Don would invite the character actors and supporting players from classic Hollywood which has recently fascinated him: Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore, Marjorie Main, Franklin Pangborn, and Thelma Ritter. He says, “I’d love to hear their stories of working alongside the brightest Hollywood stars, and see what thoughts they had about how their performances so often code for gender and sexual minorities.”


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