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Chicago Chick-fil-A owner talks LGBT rights with Windy City Times

Chicago, IL — As the Chick-fil-A controversy continued Wednesday with "appreciation day," the owner of Chicago's only Chick-fil-A location discussed her views on gay rights exclusively with the Windy City Times. 

Steve and Lauren Silich :: lauren silich / windy city times
Steve and Lauren Silich 
credit :: lauren silich / windy city times
The Atlanta-based franchise came under intense fire by gay rights groups after President Dan Cathy admitted to being anti-gay during an interview published in the Baptist Press on July 16.

The controversy took center stage in Chicago when Alderman Joe Moreno, a vocal supporter of LGBT rights, said he would block plans to open a Chick-fil-A restaurant in his Northwest Side ward.

Lauren Silich, the owner of the Chick-fil-A located at 30 E. Chicago, last week invited Mayor Rahm Emanuel to meet with her following his comments supporting Moreno.

"We are Chicagoans who are dedicated to serving our community," Silich said in a released statement. "We hold fundraisers for hospitals, school, fallen police and we donate to a wide variety of causes, including everything from churches to gay and lesbian organizations."

In an interview published Aug. 1 in the Windy City Times, Silich confirmed her franchise donated bags and prizes - including a coupon for free Chick-fil-A for a year - to the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame. 

"They asked. They've been the only one that has asked," Silich told the Times. "We haven't really gone out and asked 'hey, can we donate to you?' We just look at the ones that ask."

Silich did not say whether she supported marriage equality, calling it the "most controversial, talked-about and passionate issue of our lifetime."

When asked if she was a supporter of LGBT rights, Silich replied, "Absolutely. Without a doubt."

Read the full interview by Kate Sosin on Windy City Times.