Norton, Joseph L. ALBANY Joseph L. Norton of Dove Street, college professor and gay activist passed away May 18, 2011. Born and raised in Cobleskill, Norton had lived in Albany since 1963 where he taught counseling psychology at SUNY Albany until he retired in 1983. He graduated from St. Lawrence University (1940) and held a doctorate from Syracuse (1950). He had taught and counseled at Michigan State, Knox College and Alfred University. He served in the army from 1942 to 1945, with 30 months in Europe. He was discharged as a captain in the corps of engineers. His activities included nine years on the board of New York State Congress of Parents and Teachers, and service on the boards of the Mental Health Associations of Allegany and Albany Counties. He was president of the (now) New York State Counseling Association, and of the State University of New York Faculty Senate. He served for some years on the Senate of the (now) American Counseling Association. In 1970 he helped form the Capital District Gay and Lesbian Community Council and served as president twice. He formed the Association of Gay, Lesbian and Bisexuals in Counseling, served on the board of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and founded the gay/lesbian/bisexual interest groups of the American Association of Sex Educators and Counselors and of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sex. He was active in founding the Unitarian Universalists for Gay Concerns, and served as co-chair for some years. He helped establish the New York State Coalition of Gay Organizations. He served on the board of the National Gay and Lesbian Health Education Foundation and the board of the National Association of Gay Psychologists. Locally, he was one of the founders of the Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless, and on the board of the Capital District Counselors Association, and president of the Two Rivers Outdoor Association. He was a skiing addict. He was given the Humanitarian of the Year award by both St. Lawrence University and the Association of Gay, Lesbian and Bisexuals in Counseling and in 2009 received the Harvey Milk Award. He is survived by his husband, David L.M. Epple; his daughter, Deborah Colby of Houston; and granddaughter, Lisa Colby (Bokenkamp) of Philadelphia; and a sister, Peggy Mix of Gallupville. Community celebration of Joe's life will be held Sunday, May 22, 2011 at 4 p.m. at First Unitarian Universalist Society at 405 Washington Ave., Albany.
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Published by Albany Times Union on May 22, 2011.