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Over 20 years of experience working with nonprofit and for-profit companies, organizations, government agencies, educational institutions and foundations 

I am a health and human services nonprofit consultant, sector leader and social worker with over two decades of experience working with nonprofit and for-profit companies, organizations, government agencies, educational institutions and foundations [link]. I began to transition into this role in 1997 after a 13-year career in architecture that culminated with the establishment of a New York City-based architectural practice.


This new career path began with an interval working in gender advocacy with GenderPAC [link] and then a nearly nineteen-year period at The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center (The Center) [link]. The Center offered continual opportunities for growth and I progressively worked in all layers of The Center’s services and management structure, beginning as a peer outreach worker and concluding as The Center’s Chief Programs & Policy Officer. This was an internal and external-facing executive leadership position with direct oversight and responsibility over the conception, development and management all of The Center’s services, education, human rights and policy work with a multi-disciplinary staff of over 110 providers, consultants, peer and student providers, and clinical interns working in multiple programs. I also taught group development and practice at the Hunter College School of Social Work [link] during much of this period. Most recently, the Mayor of New York City appointed me to serve all New Yorkers as a Human Rights Commissioner in the spring of 2017 [link].


Developed industry-standard training curricula and including training over 7000 people

My training background is broad and includes expertise with HIV, substance use, and group services, as well as team development including problem solving, decision-making and the productive use of conflict. In addition, for over twenty years, I have been providing training and technical assistance to organizations and companies seeking to provide better services to transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC) people or for the inclusion of their transgender employees.


As part of this work, I have sought to identify and develop a strong body of practice knowledge for work with transgender and gender non-conforming people. Since 2001, I have worked to develop and maintain a transgender training curriculum. This training curriculum emphasizes the history, needs and voices of transgender people and the communities they inhabit. This multi-part training curriculum has evolved into a clinical training standard for training service providers working with people of transgender experience and the transgender communities, assisting providers in developing quantifiable skills and insight so they may be more effective in serving these populations. I have delivered modules from this transgender training curriculum to over 7000 people working in for-profit commerce and business companies, government, education, health care and nonprofit organizations, as well as individual practitioners locally, regionally and nationally during this period, both under the auspices of The Center and privately, including working as a consulting trainer for the National Development and Research Institutes (NDRI) [link].


Provide advocacy and leadership to develop guidelines, policies, regulations, and best practices for human rights and human services

In addition to training, I have participated in and helped create policies, conferences, forums and training institutes to provide information, technical assistance, training, and technology transfer for individual providers and organizations to improve the delivery and effectiveness of services.


To that end, my leadership has been critical in helping New York City and State legislate protections and develop policies and guidelines to address the needs of transgender and gender non-conforming New Yorkers including. Some prominent accomplishments include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • 2016: I worked with Advisory Group partners for two years to help the New York State AIDS Institute develop and accept formal recommendations as part of the statewide Ending the Epidemic plan to recognize and focus on addressing the social determinants of health that place transgender and gender non-conforming New Yorkers at higher risk for HIV and poorer HIV treatment outcomes. [link] [link]

  • 2014: In the fall of 2014, after 11-years of advocacy by myself and coalition partners, New York City’s City Council and the NYC DOHMH approved legislation, later signed by Mayor de Blasio and regulations to enable trans-people to obtain revised birth certificates without surgery. [link]

  • 2012: Revisions to the New York Police Department’s (NYPD) Patrol Guide are released after a two-year process of negotiation by myself and members of the NYPD LGBT Advisory Panel to help ensure that police officers treat transgender and gender non-conforming people with dignity and respect. [link]

  • 2007: I worked with coalition partners for nearly two years to help the New York City Department of Correction (DOC) to address concerns raised by the closure of the “Gay (and trans) Housing Unit” at the Rikers Island Correctional Facility including developing a DOC protocol to better assess the risk transgender and other LGB inmates experience in the corrections environment to ensure safer placement and better treatment. [link]

  • 2006: The New York City Department of Homeless Services (DHS) releases Transgender and Intersex Policy, concluding a three-year process of negotiation by myself and coalition partners to help trans-people get equal access to housing. [link]

  • 2004: The Guidelines Regarding Gender Identity Discrimination are released in December of 2004, concluding a two-year process by myself and coalition partners to implement the 2002 amendment to the Human Rights Law. [link]

  • 2002: In April 2002, after three years of advocacy and education by myself and coalition partners, New York City’s City Council passed, and Mayor Bloomberg signed Int. 24 as Local Law No. 3, 2002, protecting individuals from discrimination based on their gender and gender identity. [link]


I have also worked extensively with, and serve on numerous advisory boards and planning committees for New York City and State, as well as private organizations to develop guidelines, policies, regulations, and best practices. These currently include, but are not limited to:

  • Commissioner of Human Rights for the New York City Commission on Human Rights. [link] [link]

  • Responsive Action Grants Advisory Committee member for the Stonewall Community Foundation

  • Co-chair of the Lower Manhattan Ending the Epidemic (ETE) Steering Committee for the New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute.

  • Advisory Group member for the film The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson by Public Square Films. [link]

  • Co-chair of the Report and Advisory Board on Gender Marker Change Requirement for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). [link]

  • Co-chair of the Needs Assessment and member of the Executive Committee of the HIV Health & Human Services Planning Council of New York. [link]

  • Co-chair of the Ending the Epidemic (ETE) Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Advisory Group New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute. [link] [link]


I have previously served on the New York City Council Young Women’s Initiative (YWI) [link], the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) LGBT Advisory Committee [link], the University of Minnesota’s All Gender Health Online Research Project Advisory Board, the National Development and Research Institutes’ (NDRI) [link] LGBT Health Aware Project (HAP) Advisory Dialog Project Board of Advisors, the Callen-Lorde Community Health Center’s (Callen-Lorde) [link] HIV Community Advisory Board, the National Center for Transgender Equality’s (NCTE) [link] Board of Advisors, New York State AIDS Advisory Council’s Workgroup on Women & HIV [link], and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s (NGLTF) [link] Equality Begins at Home (EqBAH) Steering Committee. I have also previously served on the board of directors of the Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) [link], the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE), the New York Association for Gender Rights Advocacy (NYAGRA) and GenderPAC.


Managed a multi-million dollar department with a multi-disciplinary staff in multiple programs

I have unique managerial expertise with group interventions and development, HIV, substance use, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender services developed over a twenty-year period that saw profound changes in service delivery models, theory and an ever-growing evidence-basis.


My recent managerial work has focused on program conception and growth, outcome-driven management, and external relations. I have fostered, developed and implemented creative and strategic visions, goals and objectives for human services and capacity-building including conceiving new programs [link] [link], developing concept papers, presentations and other materials; managing feasibility studies and consultants; sharing concepts with internal stakeholders; partnering to develop funding plans; engaging potential external stakeholders, partners and funders; and adjusting organizational structure to incorporate new services and delegating authority to service staff to operationalize new programs.


I embrace outcome-driven management and have coordinated the programmatic and capacity-building aspects of compliance, grant development, monitoring and reporting while hiring, managing, training and leading highly functioning teams of staff, interns, contractors and volunteers to meet specific, mission-driven goals and targets.


To support this work, I have developed, planned and implemented strategies to inform and influence key community, government, foundations, providers, advocacy/service organizations and other stakeholders, as well as monitoring and analyzing legislation and other policy developments to assess risks and opportunities.


Wide recognition and awards by government and private organizations

My work in human rights and human services, in particular regarding the transgender communities is widely recognized and includes the following:

  • Hunter College School of Social Work 2017 Trailblazer Award in recognition of extraordinary and unique achievements in social work by Hunter alumni. [link]

  • Translatina Network 2016 Community Recognition in Spirit Award (CRIS) in recognition of dedication and commitment to empowering, emancipating and advocating for the transgender Latino/a community. [link]

  • Lambda Independent Democrats of Brooklyn (LID) 2016 Brooklyn Lambda Award recognizing leaders in Brooklyn who have done outstanding work for the LGBT community

  • Gay City News 2016 Impact Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to New York City's LGBT community, its progress, and its achievements. [link] [link]

  • New York State Senate 2015 Woman of Distinction Award, becoming the first transgender woman to be so recognized for her contributions to greatly enriching the quality of life in her community and beyond. [link]

  • 100 Women We Love 2013 recognition by Go Magazine of tastemakers, influencers and inspirational women who are making their mark on the LGBT community and on the world. [link]

  • Council of the City of New York 2012 LGBT Pride Proclamation in group recognition of the advocacy and accomplishments of the Members of the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) LGBT Advisory Panel in our work to revise the NYPD’s Patrol Guide to help ensure that police officers treat transgender and gender non-conforming people with dignity and respect. [link]

  • City of New York Office of the Comptroller 2006 Commendation for Distinguished Service in recognition of community leadership, commitment to offering services to transgender people and to promoting LGBT pride Council of the City of New York

  • 2002 Transgender Activist Award in group recognition of my work to pass Local Law 3, 2002, extending rights protections to transgender and gender non-conforming people


Writing, press and speaking [link for more information]

My voice is highly sought after as an author and expert available to the media and press. Some very recent examples include but are not limited to my chapter on “Practice with transgender people” in the 3rd edition of Gary Mallon’s Social Work Practice with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People (2017) [link] and “Pills Aren't Enough! Ending the Epidemic in the Trans Community” in The Body (2016) [link] in response to the ongoing failure of mainstream HIV prevention, treatment, and activism to address poverty as a foundational cause of HIV in the transgender communities.

I am also an experienced public speaker who has delivered keynotes, speeches, and testimony in a variety of conference, government and legislative settings. Some recent examples include but are not limited to:

  • Authored and delivered testimony at New York City Council hearings for Intro. No. 0871-2015 in relation to gender-neutral single-occupant bathrooms (2016).

  • Keynote speech addressing the social determinants that impede access to health for transgender individuals at the New York State AIDS Institute’s LGBT Health: Beyond the Epidemic, Transgender Health Symposium, 2015.

  • Authored and delivered testimony at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Board of Health hearing in relation to gender marker changes on birth certificates (2014).

  • Keynote speech addressing the role of mental health care providers in addressing the needs of transgender people at the annual Gay and Lesbian Affirmative Psychotherapy (GLAP) TransFormations conference (2012).

Broad educational background and record of excellence

I am a graduate of the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science & Art Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture [link] where I graduated first in my class and the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College of the City University of New York [link] where I graduated with a Master of Social Work with honors and taught from 2007 to 2014. As noted above, I received Hunter’s 2017 Trailblazer award in recognition of my outstanding achievements as a social worker.


Try to live a balanced life

Finally, I seek to preserve a powerful balance between my professional work and personal activities. I maintain a residence in Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn [link] with my partner, our dog, and cat. I am physically active and continue to play and promote team sports such as softball. Since 2016, I have served as the Board President of the Prospect Park Women’s Softball League (PPWSL) [link], which has offered women of all skill and experience levels the opportunity to participate in competitive sports since 1981.


To learn more about my experience, please review my Curriculum Vitae [pdf] and Career Summary [pdf] (October 2017), or find me on LinkedIn [link].

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