FanFair
October 15-22, 2017 Provincetown, Massachusetts
   

Transgender Pioneer Awards

Honoring those transgender leaders who changed the world...


Every year, Fantasia Fair's parent organization Real Life Experiences,Inc. honors transgender leaders - those who have sacrificed their careers, their families, their fortunes to change the world so transgendered people could begin to come together in safety and comfort. Without them, we would not be here; we would be at home, hiding in our closets.

We meet to honor their work and thank them for all they have done for us and to give them back a little in return for their decades of work on our behalf.


Monica Roberts
Monica Roberts
Transgender Pioneer 2015

Monica Roberts

Monica Roberts is an award winning blogger, history buff, thinker, lecturer and passionate advocate on trans issues.

In 1994, after seeing an article with a problematic representation of Black trans people in a trans centric magazine, Ms. Roberts resolved to participate in the next GenderPac trans lobby day in Washington DC and increase the visibility of Black trans leaders in the transgender movement. Since then, she’s advocated for trans human rights protections and has lobbied at the federal, state and local levels in Kentucky and Texas.

Monica is a founding member of the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition and served on its inaugural board as its Lobby Chair from 1999-2002. She co-hosted a GLBT radio show in her hometown from 1999-2001, founded the Transsistahs-Transbrothas Internet discussion list for African-American transgender people in 2004, and helped organize the 2005 and 2006 Transsistahs-Transbrothas Conferences that took place in Louisville.

Ms. Roberts is also a prolific writer. She wrote for the Louisville-based GLBT newspaper "The Letter" and since 2006, has authored the award-winning blog TransGriot. According to GLAAD, the writings at TransGriot made Monica Roberts “the first African American trans woman to create a news outlet that not only reports trans women of color issues but also showcases the leaders in the fight for equality of trans people… filling a void in the blogsphere.” Her writing about transgender issues from a Black perspective has appeared at Ebony.com, Loop21.com, Transadvocate, Racialicious, Feministe, Global Comment, The Bilerico Project, What Tami Said and Womanist Musings.

Monica seeks to not only end the erasure of African-American trans voices from a movement they played significant roles in starting, but get African-American transpeople and other voices of color more involved in empowering themselves. Her activism focus is educating the GLBT community and allies about our issues and concerns in addition to shedding light about the struggles of GLBT people across the African Diaspora.

It is with great honor that the Board of Directors of Real Life Experience to recognize Monica Roberts as the Virginia Prince Transgender Pioneer for 2015.

Jamison Green
Jamison Green
Transgender Pioneer 2014

Jamison Green

Jamison Green is an accomplished internationally-respected author, educator, and advocate for transgender health, civil rights, and social safety.

Jamison has held many mentoring and leadership roles, including being the head of FTM International, a two-term board member of IFGE, a board member of TransYouth Family Allies, and a co-founder of the Transgender Law & Policy Institute and Gender Education & Advocacy, Inc.

Mr. Green has trained officers in the San Francisco Police Academy on transgender awareness. He has done policy consulting and transgender diversity training for corporations for over 20 years. He is the architect of the effort to remove transsexual or transgender exclusions from health insurance plans and he worked with the Human Rights Campaign to provide them with the tools and information they needed to incentivize Fortune 500 corporations and diversity leaders to demand trans-inclusive health insurance products from their carriers and third party administrators.

After a 30-year career in corporate technical publications in the financial, medical, and computer design & manufacturing industries, Jamison undertook his doctoral studies in law to further his ability to do transformative work at the intersection of law and medicine. Mr. Green earned a Ph.D. in Law from Manchester Metropolitan University, England with a specialization in transgender and transsexual legal issues; he is the 8th person in the world—and the first American—to earn such a degree.

From 2009-2011, he worked as the Primary Care Protocols Manager for the Center of Excellence for Transgender Health at the University of California at San Francisco, and from 2012-2013 acted as their International Guidelines Manager.

Dr. Green was elected to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health board of directors in 2003, re-elected to the board in 2007, and in 2011, he was elected President of WPATH. He is the second trans person to be elected president of that organization in its 35-year history.

Jamison Green has drafted non-discrimination ordinances and contributed to the text of innumerable laws and policies now in force around the world. He is a co-author of the WPATH Standards of Care for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender and Gender Nonconforming People (Version 7). Dr. Green has appeared in over a dozen documentary films. He is the author of the prize-winning 2004 monograph Becoming a Visible Man, has contributed to several academic anthologies, and written a book of short stories.

He has been called a pioneer, a grandfather of the movement, an inspiration, a rock star, even a saint. Here at Fantasia Fair, we also know him as an engaging entertainer and charming dinner company! His work on non-discrimination laws and removal of insurance exclusions has earned him numerous awards for advocacy and inspirational leadership. It is with great honor that the Board of Directors of Real Life Experience add to Jamison’s long list of recognitions by naming Jamison Green a Virginia Prince Transgender Pioneer for 2014.


Mariette Pathy Allen

Mariette Pathy Allen

Mariette Pathy Allen has been a professional photographer, writer and speaker on, and on behalf of, the trans community. Her work has greatly impacted the way our community is seen and how our community sees itself.

Mariette became involved with the trans community in 1978, when attending Mardi Gras in New Orleans. As Mariette describes the event, she happened to be befriended by "a group of people, dressed in evening gowns, with full make-up and cascading wigs, who invited me to join them for breakfast. When we finished, I took my first photograph of the group as they stood around the hotel’s swimming pool, and when I did, my life changed. As I lifted the camera to my eyes, I found myself looking into the eyes of the person standing in the middle of the group. Suddenly, I no longer saw a man or a woman, but the essence of a human being, a soul."

Soon afterwards, Mariette attended her first Fantasia Fair conference and, by 1981, became the Fair’s official photographer. Her work helped people change their sense of self from feeling scared, guilty, and unlovable by helping create "a space to explore who they were, literally and emotionally." She showed crossdressers as “lovable people who could be seen in the daylight of everyday life,” often in stark contrast to the harsh, negative portrayals found in most media at that time. Mariette’s work extended to the family and friends of those in the community – and not only with photographs but also interviews with them. Ito many, it was the first time they felt that they were heard.

By the mid-1980s, Mariette was working on "The Transgender Tapestry" magazine, not only doing the photography, but also producing articles and suggesting content. In 1988, she received a New York State Council on the Arts grant, to organize exhibitions and talks related to her efforts.

In 1989, E.P. Dutton published her first, pioneering book, "Transformations: Crossdressers and Those Who Love Them". This ground-breaking collection of photographs and interviews with crossdressers and their loved ones offered insights into the differences between sexual orientation and gender presentation that was virtually unknown outside the trans community. Prints from the book were made into an art exhibition, "Transformations", held at the Simon Lowinsky Gallery in 1990.

After the release of "Transformations", Mariette began to work with female-to-male transsexuals as well as gender variant youth. Her photographs make a significant contribution to Leslie Feinberg's Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman , illustrate Riki Anne Wilchins' Read My Lips: Sexual Subversion and the End of Gender and are included in many other books.

Ms. Allen’s second book, "The Gender Frontier", was a collection of photographs, interviews, and essays covering political activism, youth, and the range of people that identify as transgender in mainland USA. It won the 2004 Lambda Literary Award in the Transgender/Genderqueer category.

In 2014, Daylight books published her third book, “TransCuba”, which focuses on the everyday lives of transgender women in Cuba.

Mariette Pathy Allen has participated in numerous political events, lobbying efforts, and vigils. She has given slide presentations for a wide-range of groups in the United States and abroad, including schools, social service workers, The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT), Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS), and many trans-focused conferences. She has made numerous appearances on television and radio, and in newspapers and magazines. She was also involved with several films including “What Sex am I” in 1984; "The Transsexual Menace" in 1996; "The Transgender Revolution" in 1998; and "Southern Comfort" in 2001. "The Transgender Revolution" won a GLAAD Media Award and "Southern Comfort" won the 2001 Documentary Award at the Sundance Film Festival.

Her work is being archived by Duke University's Rare Book and Manuscripts Library, and the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's Studies. Also, her work is included in collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, the George Eastman House, the Bibliotheque Nationale among others, and has been exhibited internationally.

Mariette's impact on society’s perception of the trans community is hard to overstate. From the 1980s through to the present day, her work has reach multitudes of people across the globe and has had a significant, positive effect in the lives of so many.

Recognition of Mariette Pathy Allen's contributions to the trans community include Trinity Award in 1991, a Rainbow Award in 2006, and now, the Virginia Prince Transgender Pioneer Award.

JoAnn Roberts
JoAnn Roberts
Transgender Pioneer 2013

JoAnn Roberts

JoAnn Roberts was not just a Transgender Pioneer but also a community builder. Her many contributions helped shape the way today’s society perceives transgender individuals as well as how many transgender individuals perceive themselves.

Although JoAnn is well known for hosting the annual Paradise in the Poconos retreat for crossdressers, her impact was much broader and much more significant than any single event. JoAnn was a prolific writer. She published LadyLike and TranScript magazines, and in 1985 wrote and published the book Art & Illusion, A Guide to Crossdressing. JoAnn started her own publishing company, which sold which sold self-help books and videos for the trans community. She was the author of the Gender Bill of Rights in 1990.

In 1987, JoAnn, along with several others, created The Renaissance Transgender Association, Inc. and served as that organization’s first managing director. She co-founder of the Congress of Transgender Organizations (CTO), the Transgender Alliance for Community (TAC), GenderPAC, and the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition (NTAC). She served as Chair of the board of the American Educational Gender Information Service (AEGIS) and served on the board of directors at The International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE). In 1996, JoAnn partnered with Cindy Martin and Jamie Faye Fenton to create Transgender Forum. She was a driving force for The Second International Congress on Crossdressing, Sex and Gender in 1997.

Although JoAnn Roberts is no longer with us, her presence is still felt in a great-many ways.

It is with great respect that board of directors of Real Life Experiences recognizes JoAnn Roberts as a Virginia Prince Transgender Pioneer for 2013.



Yvonne_Cook-Riley
Yvonne Cook-Riley
Transgender Pioneer 2013

Yvonne Cook-Riley

Yvonne Cook-Riley is truly a pioneer of the Transgendered movement. She worked with advocacy organizations in the early 1990s to incorporate the word “transgender” and its associated concepts and that effort took off into the “transgender movement” that we see today.

She became involved with others in what we would now call the transgender community in 1981. Yvonne started organizing support groups in 1983. In 1985, Yvonne became active with the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE) and served that organization in numerous capacities, including Director of Operations, Treasurer, and a Member of their Board of Directors. She appeared on dozens of television talk shows, over 200 talk radio shows in the late 1980’s and 90's and made eight appearances on behalf of IFGE at the American Psychiatric Association's national conferences. Yvonne helped in the establishment of other conferences in the U.S., such as Southern Comfort, Texas Tea Party, California Dreaming, and Be All. Also, she has been involved in numerous other trans-related organizations, including Blue Ridge Pride, Kindred Spirits, and Transgender American Veterans Association (TAVA).

Yvonne Cook-Riley’s dedication to the Transgendered movement has been recognized many times, including the Outreach Institute’s “Outreach Medal” in 1991, the IFGE’s “Trinity Award,” also in 1991, and the IFGE Virginia Prince lifetime service award in 1995.


Mara Keisling
Mara Keisling
Transgender Pioneer 2012

Mara Keisling

Mara Keisling is a transgender-identified woman and a parent and is widely considered to be one of the nation’s leading voices for transgender equality.

Mara is a graduate of Penn State University and did her graduate work at Harvard University in American Government. She is a founding board member of the Stonewall Democracy Fund, and has served on the board of Directors of Common Roads, an LGBTQ Youth Group, and on the steering committee of the Statewide Pennsylvania Rights Coalition.

In 2003, recognizing the need for a cohesive voice in Washington for transgender people, Mara founded the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), a social justice organization dedicated to advancing equality through advocacy, collaboration and empowerment. Mara and NCTE were among the leaders of UnitedENDA, a coalition of more than 400 GLBT organizations lobbying for a trans-inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

Mara regularly appears on news outlets such as CNN and CSPAN, and is often quoted in the New York Times, the Washington Post and hundreds of other national and local print and electronic media. Amongst her many recognitions, Ms. Keisling was name Harvard University's Outstanding LGBT Person of the Year in 2005.



Monica Helms
Monica Helms
Transgender Pioneer 2011

Monica Helms

Monica Helms has been an activist in the transgender community for more than a quarter-century. She helped form the Tri-Ess chapter Alpha Zeta 1983 and It's Time, Arizona in 1999. She was the Director of Operation for It's Time, Arizona through 2000 and the Executive Director for Trans=Action in Georgia from 2000 to 2006. In January 2003, Helms Co-Founded the Transgender American Veterans Association (TAVA) with Angela Brightfeather and serves as the President since then.

She has served on the Board of National TransAdvocay Coalition (NTAC), the Secretary of Georgia Stonewall Democrats, on the Board of LaGender, Inc., and the Southern Association for Gender Education. Currently, she is on the Advisory Board for NCTE, Military Equality Alliance, Founder and President of the Transgender American Veterans Association.

In 2003, Monica received the Trinity Award and in July 2004, she was elected as the first transgender delegate from Georgia to the Democratic National Convention. She is also a published author, was a regular columnist for Transgender Tapestry and Bi-Magazine, Op-Ed writer, a contributor to the book, Trans People in Love, and the creator of the Transgender Pride Flag. She has released numerous video on her YouTube channel and regularly writes about trans-related topics on her blog, Trans Universe.



Sandra Cole
Sandra Cole
Transgender Pioneer 2011

Sandra Cole

Dr. Cole is a sexologist, nationally AASECT Certified as a sexuality educator and sexuality counselor, and for 40 years has been faculty in University academic medicine. For the past 27 years she has been friend and colleague with the transgender community, working with transgender individuals and their partners on topics of sexual health, intimacy and relationships. Over a period of 20 years she has conducted scores of important group discussions at Fantasia Fair, where she experiences many wonderful friendships, amazing programs and creative events.

As founder of the unique and large University of Michigan Health System Comprehensive Gender Services Program in 1993, she successfully served as its Director for 7 years, retiring from that position to continue her work with the transgender community and strongly advocate for civil rights and social justice for transgendered individuals and their families. Sandra retired from her position at the University and remains full professor at the University of Michigan Medical School. She was also a founding member of Gender Education & Advocacy, Inc., www.gender.org, which is not active at this time.



Ethan St. Pierre
Ethan St. Pierre
Transgender Pioneer 2010

Ethan St. Pierre

For more than a decade, Ethan St. Pierre has been making a difference for many, both in and out of the GLBT community. His efforts to help educate people about anti-transgender hatred and bias has reached people at the local, state, and national level – even the halls of Congress.

Ethan is no stranger to the impact such hatred and bias can have on individuals and families. He is the nephew of a hate crime victim, Debra Forte, a transsexual woman murdered in 1995, ironically, while transgender activists gathered in protest at the trial for the murder of transsexual Brandon Teena.

Since then, Ethan has become involved with the Garden of Peace Memorial, Boston's memorial to the victims of murder. Ethan became a board member of Families United Against Hate and the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence project. Ethan also works with the Remembering Our Dead Project as coordinator of the International Transgender Day of Remembrance, www.transgenderdor.org, where he investigates and updates the statistics of those murdered because of anti-transgender hatred or bias.

In 2003, Ethan St. Pierre lost his job as a security supervisor because of his transition. He has told his story to many, including legislators in Boston and in Washington, DC. Ethan has worked tirelessly for the passage of the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which would prohibit discrimination against persons based on gender identity or expression.

Ethan is also the founder and creator of the TransFM internet broadcasting network and he co-hosts a live talk show on transgender issues called Sodium Pentothal Sunday. Both the show and network have been extremely important for their educational value on issues affecting the LGBT community.



Dallas Denny
Dallas Denny
Transgender Pioneer 2009

Dallas Denny

Dallas Denny is a respected writer, activist, scholar, and a transgender pioneer. Her contributions to the community are numerous, significant, and date back nearly three decades.

In the early 1980s, Dallas organized the National Transgender Library Project. In 1990, she founded the American Educational Gender Information Service (AEGIS) to make referrals and disseminate information on gender dysphoria. For many years, she served as executive director of that organization.

As any Google search on her name will demonstrate, Dallas is a prolific writer with hundreds of articles and three books to her credit. For several years, she held the Editor position with the journal Chrysalis and from 1998 through 2006 was the editor of Transgender Tapestry. Dallas was one of the founders of the Southern Comfort conference and worked for many years with our own Fantasia Fair. She was director of Fantasia Fair from 2001 through 2007 and she sat on the board of directors of Real Life Experiences, Inc, the parent organization of Fantasia Fair.


Alison and Dotty Laing
Alison & Dotty Laing
Transgender Pioneers 2008

Alison & Dotty Laing

For more than twenty years, Alison and Dotty Laing have worked to improve the lives of those in the Transgender community and have made a difference in the way transgendered individuals live in the greater society.

In 1986, after Alison attended her First Fantasia Fair, both Alison and Dotty eagerly volunteered their time and energies to help make the Fair happen. By the mid-1990s, Alison became the Director of Fantasia Fair - a role that she continued for many years. When medical issues prevented Alison from continuing as Fair Director, it was Dotty who stepped in to ensure the smooth operation of the Fair. Between the two of them, they held the role of Director or Assistant Director for eight Fairs. In recent years, Alison was a member of the Fair organizing committee and a member on the board of directors for Real Life Experience, Inc., Fantasia Fair's parent organization. Alison continues to advise the organizers of the Fair and present workshops. Dotty continued her outreach work with S.O.s. until her passing in 2009.

The efforts of the Laing's were not isolated to Fantasia Fair. Alison helped found Renaissance Education Association and served that organization in numerous capacities, including Chairperson. In addition, she has served on the boards of AEGIS, Gender-PAC and the Rikki Swin Institute Advisory Board. Alison was the Executive Director of International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE), Secretary to their Board of Directors 1998 to 2004 and was Co-Chair of the IFGE annual convention from 1999 to 2008.

Dotty often provided informal counseling to both spouses and TG persons at TG gatherings and after events by telephone. She has participated in and led workshops involving TG couple relations at various TG gatherings. When Renaissance co-hosted the 1993 IFGE Convention in Philadelphia, she assisted in organizing the S.O. activities and programs, as well as conference meals and social activities. Over the years she has provided editing and proof reading of numerous letters, columns and press releases. She worked on convention planning, assisted in the convention site selections, meal planning and registration.

Thankfully, the efforts of Dotty and Alison have not gone unnoticed. In 1995, Dotty received the Outreach Award for her work with Fantasia Fair. In 1992, Alison was the "Ms. Fantasia Fair" Award and in 2008, she was able to bestow that same honor to Dotty. In 1996, after Dotty led a critical fund raising project for IFGE, she received a special award by the IFGE staff for her success. Alison was awarded the IFGE Trinity award, and in 2003, along with Dotty, the Virginia Prince award for Outstanding Service to the community.


Stephen Whittle
Stephen Whittle
Transgender Pioneer 2007

Stephen Whittle

Dr Stephen Whittle OBE, Ph.D is an active member of the United Kingdom TransActivist organization Press for Change. He is Professor of Equalities Law in the School of Law at Manchester Metropolitan University, co-ordinator of the United Kingdom's FTM Network, and vice-president of Press for Change.

Stephen has actively worked towards changing the laws and social attitudes surrounding transgender and transsexual lives. His activism led to the important XYZ case before the European Court of Human Rights in 1996. In 2002 he was awarded the Human Rights Award by the Civil Rights group Liberty, for his commitment and dedication to ensuring the advancement of rights for transsexual people through judicial means in the UK, Europe, and around the world and Stephen was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to gender issues. Mr. Whittle has written extensively on the law surrounding transsexual and transgender people, as well as several academic articles on the history and theory of transgender. His writings have included, among other things, an article on the ground-breaking transsexual employment discrimination case decided on by the European Court of Justice.


Holly Boswell
Holly Boswell
Transgender Pioneer 2006

Holly Boswell

Holly Boswell is one of those special individuals who have helped launch and define the Transgender Movement.

In 1990, Holly wrote the groundbreaking and influential essay titled "The Transgender Alternative." By many accounts, this essay planted the seeds of the transgender revolution that today bears fruit. In fact, Holly's work was one of the references used to define the term "transgender" by the Oxford English dictionary.

Holly's contributions were not limited to her writings. Twenty years ago, she co-founded the Phoenix Transgender Support Group in Asheville, NC, which is now the oldest open group in the South-East and is currently helping people in five states. In 1991, Holly's efforts helped create the Southern Comfort conference and she has been the chief architect of the conference's program ever since. By 1993, Holly founded the alternative Trans-Spiritual community known as Kindred Spirits, which produces her Traveling Medicine Shows. At the turn of the millennium, Holly opened the "Bodhi Tree House," a mountainside retreat for the transgender near the Black Mountains of North Carolina.

Holly has become a very popular speaker and seminar presenter with various Transgender conferences, including such events such as California Dreaming, IFGE, Southern Comfort, and of course Fantasia Fair, where she usually focuses on gender expression beyond the binary, the spiritual aspect of our gender journeys, and the beauty of "humanness" regardless of gender.

Holly Boswell's efforts have earned her two service awards from the Asheville LGBT Community, as well as the 1998 Trinity Award and the 2003 Virginia Prince Award - both presented by the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE).

You can read more about Holly's contributions in the October 16, 2006 edition of Fantasia Fair's Gazette.

Joanne Penny Law
Joanne Law
Transgender Pioneer 2005

Joanne Law

Joanne Penny Law describes herself as "a transgender activist" with more than two decades worth of experience assisting individuals, corporations, unions, and policing organizations in the most effective manner to address transgender and gay/lesbian issues. Joanne has fought tirelessly for the acceptance of all individuals, independent of their orientation and gender identity/expression.

She is a long-time member of Gender Mosaic, a transgender social support group in Ottawa. Joanne has been a member of the Ottawa Police Service Liaison Committee, President of the Association of Lesbian, Transgender, Gay and Bisexuals of Ottawa, and a member of the Ottawa Carleton Hate Crime Task Force. Her opinions and insight have been found on the Internet, large national conferences, Canadian national radio, and on television.

Joanne also maintains a popular Internet site, where yoou can find Joanne's 2005 Fantasia Fair keynote address along with other of her writings.


Nancy Nangeroni
Nancy Nangeroni
Transgender Pioneer 2005

Nancy Nangeroni

Nancy Nangeroni is a widely respected transgender activist, author, lecturer, musician, and media producer on issues of gender.

After transitioning from living as a man in early 1993, she became a leading voice in the emerging transgender movement,. She established a long history in community support efforts and collaborative activism. Nancy has served as Executive Director for the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE). She founded the Boston chapter of The Transsexual Menace and authored the transgender amendment to the Cambridge Human Rights Ordinance. Nancy is a regular presenter to classes at local high schools and colleges, as well as for professional and GLBT organizations and transgender gatherings across the US. She has appeared on local and national commercial prime-time radio and television broadcasts to discuss issues of gender and transsexualism. Along with her partner, Gordene Mackenzie, she produces and hosts the leading radio talk show about gender and transgender issues, GenderTalk, which airs weekly on WMBR-FM in Cambridge, MA, and worldwide via the Web at www.gendertalk.com.


Sister Mary Elizabeth
Sister Mary Elizabeth
Transgender Pioneer 2004

Sister Mary Elizabeth

During a trip to rural Missouri in 1990, Sister Mary Elizabeth met a number of people living with AIDS who were unable to obtain the latest news and information about the disease for fear of losing their privacy. "I realized that electronic bulletin boards were the answer," the 57-year-old Episcopalian nun says. "Users would have up-to-date information and could retain their anonymity." That same year, Sister Mary Elizabeth followed her inspiration and founded the AIDS Education Global Information System (AEGIS), which became the world's largest database for AIDS and HIV information. AEGIS, which Sister Mary Elizabeth runs from her mobile home in the old California mission town of San Juan Capistrano, is the hub for hundreds of thousands of electronic files that include all the AIDS-related contents of the National Library of Medicine and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although AEGIS is free to users, the $20,000 annual cost of maintaining the service is acquired through contributions and Sister Mary Elizabeth's part-time work as a computer consultant.


Judy Osborne
Judy Osborne
Transgender Pioneer 2004

Judy Osborne

Judy Osborne, a transsexual woman, began her involvement with the community in 1977 when she joined a Tri-Ess affiliate in Portland. She joined the Emerald City when it was formed in 1983 and its board in 1985, serving on the board a total of twelve years, four of them as the club's President. She was a member the Seattle Police LBGTQ Advisory Council and taught classes at the Seattle/King County Police Academy before it merged with the State Academy. Judy has written extensively for Tapestry and Transgender Forum and prepared and distributed a series of twenty-four monthly letters on transgender topics for psychologists. She has done considerable political work for the LGBTQ community in and around Seattle.

She’s a board member of Seattle’s Ingersoll Gender Center, where she chairs the Outreach and Communications Committee and writes a monthly letter to psychologists about transgender topics. She especially likes working with queer youth, speaking with various youth groups and classes and serving on a unique American Friends Service Committee GLBTQ youth program committee. Judy is a member of the Seattle Police Chief’s Sexual Minorities Advisory Council and teaches classes of cadets at the Police Academy about transgender topics. Judy’s work for Soulforce has taken her into a remarkable variety of places, situations and occasionally jails. She serves on the Soulforce national advisory board.


Phyllis Randolph Frye
Phyllis Randolph Frye
Transgender Pioneer 2003

Phyllis Randolph Frye

Phyllis Randolph Frye is an OUT transgender attorney from Houston. In her earlier life she was an Eagle Boy Scout, her high school's ROTC commander, a member of the Texas A&M University Corps of Cadets, a military officer, a civil engineer and a father. Ms. Frye has been involved, consistently on the front lines of the LGBT freedom movement, for 25 consecutive years. In 1980, she changed the Houston law against crossdressing. She founded the Transgender Law Conference in 1991. She was the pioneer in the national movement for transgender legal and political action. In 1995, Ms. Frye received the "Creator of Change" Award from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. In 1999, she received the Virginia Prince Lifetime Contribution Award from the International Foundation for Gender Education. During this year, she and attorney Alyson Meiselman of Maryland, took the Christie Lee Littleton case (http://christielee.net) which declared that genitals were not dispositive in the legal definition of sex so that a transgendered woman, vaginaed for over twenty years, was declared to be legally male. She has also taught as an adjunct professor of law and she was elected or served four times as a Delegate to the Convention of the Democratic Party of the State of Texas.

You can keep up with Ms. Frye's latest happenings on her website.


Ariadne Kane
Ariadne Kane
Transgender Pioneer 2003

Ariadne Kane

Dr. J. Ariadne Kane is a gender specialist and director of Theseus Counselling Services. She is currently doing Consulting work on a variety of subjects including gerontology and the needs of GLBT folks approaching the 6th decade. She is also marketing GARP and other workshops about gender diversity.

Ariadne has a host of major accomplishments and awards including being one of the founders of Fantasia Fair, Creator of the New Women's Conference, the original Provincetown symposia on CD/TS concerns (1976-80), founder and long time Executive Director of OIGS, and promotion of the androgyne lifestyle as a model of gender balance in the face of societal changes and is the co-author of "Crossing Sexual Boundaries."


Merissa Sherril Lynn
Merissa Sherrill Lynn
Transgender Pioneer 2002

Merissa Sherrill Lynn

Merissa Sherrill Lynn was founding director of the International Foundation for Gender Education, an early transgender activist and community leader.

In the early 1970s, Ms. Lynn was a part of the Cherrystone Club, whose members envisioned Fantasia Fair. By 1997, the Cherrystone Club split into two groups, one of which became The Tiffany Club. As the Tiffany Club of New England, this organization continues to thrive and provide a safe, secure, non-sexual, friendly place to meet and dress.

In the late 1980s, working with the Chicago Gender Society, Ms. Lynn helped organize the first International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE) convention in Chicago, Illinois. Today, this conference is considered one of the most influential and prominent annual transgender events.


Virginia Prince
Virginia Prince
Transgender Pioneer 2002

Virginia Prince

Virginia Prince is the founder of the first cross dressing society in North America, Tri-Ess, and a well known pioneer in our community. She was the publisher of Transvestia, and an active and ardent spokesperson, author and researcher for the CD community for over 50 years.

A staunch promoter of heterosexual transvestism since the late 1950s, Virginia Prince has had a powerful impact on the transgender community. She was the first person to establish a systematic organizational structure that provided a safe setting for transvestites and transsexuals to “come out,” and her advocacy of a “transgenderist” position since the late 1960s constituted a major conceptual and identity innovation. These articles focus on issues of sex, sexuality, and gender and serve as a foundation for what later became “transgender studies” in the 1990s.



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