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Media Mention

A Pioneering Family Celebrates Double Father’s Day

“I can’t tell you how fortunate we feel, to have this life with Jake. It is a blessing to wake up every day and realize as a gay man, I am legally married to my husband and that we have a son. I still have to pinch myself to believe this is real. We are part of a growing movement in forming a new type of family. But in the end — family is family. And ours is a solid one.” - Joe Summerill

Adoptive Family Smiles with Son Putting Arms Around His Dads

As America celebrates Father’s Day, Jake Summerill-Bizzell takes part in a double celebration.

A few years after their commitment ceremony in 2003, Joe Summerill and Wes Bizzell, both attorneys, adopted newborn Jake, from a young mother who gave birth at Baltimore’s St. Agnes Hospital. The two dads had another ceremony in 2010, attended by their son, when they became husband and husband, after same-sex unions became legal,

Jake calls Summerill “Dad”, and he calls Bizzell “Papa”.

The two were among the first gay partners to adopt a child with the Maryland-based non-profit agency Adoptions Together, founded in 1990 by Janice Goldwater, CEO of the organization.

“I started the agency because there was a gap in the adoption community,” Goldwater said. “Many religious organizations only served their own kind. There was no organization that welcomed single parents, same-sex parents, married couples of all religions and all races.

“We wanted to serve every child who was in need of a family.”

Here, Joe Summerill reflects on being the recipient of the prize of that work — the gift of Jake, a baby raised by two fathers who is now a healthy, strong, confident and deeply loved teenager.

Continue Reading on the Capital Gazette