Wednesday July 25, 2012 | 03:17 PM

(Gill Foundation photo)

Tim Gill, the Colorado software developer and national donor to gay rights causes, has agreed to donate up to $100,000 to the group attempting legalize same-sex marriage in Maine. 

The pledge is a matching challenge. Gill, who made his fortune as the head of Quark, Inc., has agreed to match every donation up to $100,000 to the group Mainers United for Marriage through Aug. 10.

“I believe Maine is well-positioned to make history this November. That’s why I’m investing in this campaign early when contributions can have their greatest impact,” Gill said in a statement. “There’s a lot of work left to do, but I think Maine has a clear path to victory if others join me in helping them secure the resources they need to win today.”

 

The challenge makes Gill the latest high-profile donor to the group supporting a referendum to legalize same-sex marriage in Maine. Others include billionaire hedge fund manager and Republican donor Paul Singer and Chris Hughes, the co-founder of Facebook and current owner of the The New Republic magazine.

Gill, who is gay, is a longtime gay rights advocate. In 2005 he started the nonprofit Gill Action Fund to promote LGBT causes.The Colorado resident was once considered the nation's largest donor to causes affecting the LGBT community, including laws that would allow gay couples to marry. 

Gill has also played a large role in Colorado politics and has contributed significant amounts of money to help Democrats get elected to that state's legislature. 

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Steve Mistler covers politics and government for the Portland Press Herald. He spends a lot of time in the hallways of the State House.

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