September 13, 2018 Press Releases

Tim Kaine to Participate in Special Presentation of The Laramie Project, A Play About the Aftermath of Matthew Shepard’s Murder, with His Parents Judy and Dennis Shepard

On Friday, September 14, Senator Tim Kaine and his wife, former Virginia Secretary of Education Anne Holton, will join Judy and Dennis Shepard, parents of Matthew Shepard, and the cast of The Laramie Project, for a special presentation of excerpts of the play.

The Richmond Triangle Players’ production of The Laramie Project commemorates the upcoming 20th anniversary of Matthew’s death. Matthew, at the time a student at the University of Wyoming, was attacked, tied to a fence, and left to die in a field outside of Laramie, Wyoming, in October of 1998. The media attention and the role Matthew’s sexuality played as a motive for the crime highlighted the lack of hate crime laws in Wyoming and other states. The play centers on the aftermath of Matthew’s murder, and draws upon interviews with residents of Laramie, first-hand accounts, and news reports. The Laramie Project has been extensively used to engage communities across the world in a conversation about fighting homophobia and promoting inclusion.

Kaine has a long record of defending and advancing LGBTQ rights and has made equality for all Virginians central to his campaign. The Matthew Shepard Foundation, founded by Judy and Dennis Shepard to honor their son, is an active supporter of LGBTQ rights and has endorsed a bill introduced by Kaine and Senator Ed Markey that outlaws the use of “gay panic” and “trans panic” defenses, which was invoked by one of Matthew’s killers. In addition, Kaine has championed LGBTQ non-discrimination legislation known as the Equality Act.

Media interested in attending this event should contact Kaine campaign press secretary Brandon Gassaway at

Friday, September 14
Special Presentation of The Laramie Project with Judy and Dennis Shepard
Where: Richmond Triangle Players Theatre, 1300 Altamont Ave, Richmond, VA
When: 9:00 a.m.