Brian McNaught was born January 28, 1948 in Detroit, Michigan. He was educated in the Catholic schools, and at Marquette University, from which he graduated in 1970 with a degree in journalism.
McNaught's varied political and social activism includes his being a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, protesting discrimination in the Catholic Church by going on a three week hunger strike, and serving as a spokesperson for gay and lesbian rights, especially as they pertain to the Catholic Church.
He has had careers as a newspaper columnist, writer, political appointee, gay activist, sexuality and AIDS educator, and corporate sensitivity trainer. McNaught has given numerous lectures and workshops at universities and corporations to help people gain a better understanding of gay and lesbian issues in the academic environment and the workplace.
McNaught served for two years, 1982-1984, as Boston Mayor Kevin White's liaison to the gay and lesbian community, the first full-time position of its kind. During this time, he worked with the mayor to write and implement the Boston Project, whose goal was to improve life for the city's gay and lesbian citizens. The project invited gay people to testify before city panels about how they were being treated. McNaught also established the first city government task force on AIDS in Boston in 1983.
As a newspaper columnist, McNaught wrote for several gay and Catholic publications, including the
Michigan Catholic, the Blade, the Metro Gay Times, and Alive! magazine, as well as writing guest columns for several other publications. McNaught has also written books and produced videos. He has published On Being Gay, both as a book and video, and A Disturbed Peace, Gay Issues in the Workplace, Growing up Gay and Lesbian, Homophobia in the Workplace, and Now that I'm Out, What do I do?