The Grant Making Panel (GMP) is made up of trans activists from across the globe with diverse expertise who review applications and select grantees. Interested in joining the GMP? Learn more here.
Max is a trans* activist and researcher from Berlin, Germany. He has engaged in trans* activism and advocated for the trans* community for the past 8 years. He is currently a doctoral student at the Institute of Public Health in Berlin and the main focus of his activism and work is in research on access to healthcare for trans* people (especially for those who belong to further marginalized groups) in Western Europe and the United States. He is also a lecturer for students in Social Work in Berlin and teaches a class about queer-sensitive Social Work.
Yael Demedetskaya is a trans woman activist from Russia. In 2004, she established the Foundation Transgender of which she is Director, Projects and Media Coordinator. She has an extensive history of advocacy on trans* rights in Russia including working on improving healthcare access, employment, empowerment, legal and psychological counselling. She conducted one of the first support groups in Russia for trans* people and delivered the first special training sessions for the medical personnel about transgender issues and how to support trans* patients. She has a PhD in mathematics and MSc economics (Moscow State University), specialized in financial analysis with IT and technical background. Yael is also a Senior Researcher in the affiliated Gender Dynamics Research group and published several papers including “Transgender Parenting in Russia”, “Study of self-esteem and quality of life in persons with transgender identity” and studies about the HIV spread among the transgender population in Russia. She also works on HIV prevention programs for trans* people in Russia.
Franco Fuica is a trans feminist activist from Chile of trans-masculine identity and expression. He has developed his activism in trans organizations since his days as a university student, becoming the first trans person to be elected for a position of student political representation in Chile. Franco is one of the founding partners of OTD Chile (Organizing Trans Diversities) as the coordinator of Legislation and Public Policy, from where he has led efforts to obtain a Gender Identity Law in Chile. He is part of the LGBTTTI Coalition of the Organization of American States where he advocates in different areas of the Inter-American System. Since 2017, he is part of the Regional Council of International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association for Latin America and the Caribbean (ILGA LAC). He is one of the founders of ULTrans (Latin American Union of trans masculinities and people assigned to female gender at birth) and serves as Co President of the Civil Society of the Equal Rights Coalition.
Claudia Vásquez Haro
Claudia Vásquez Haro is the President of OTRANS Argentina and Federal Trans Convocation and Transvestite of Argentina. She is the General Coordinator of the TLGBI Organizations Front of the Province of Buenos Aires. She was the first migrant trans woman to receive her ID with her self-perceived identity in a public ceremony headed by Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. In 2016, she was part of the coalition that represented Argentina in the presentation of the first report on the human rights situation of trans and transvestites before the UN CEDAW Committee. Since 2012, she has worked in the press area of the Human Rights Secretariat of the Argentine Nation, and is an Assistant Professor of the Human Rights Chair of the FPyCS-UNLP, where she is also in charge of the Observatory of Communication, Gender and Diversity with perspective in Human Rights and is the Head of the Directorate of Sexual Diversity in the School of Social Communication. She graduated from the Faculty of Journalism and Social Communication (FPyCS) of the National University of La Plata (UNLP) and is currently a PhD student.
Alex Rodrigo Castillo Hernández
Alex Rodrigo Castillo Hernández is a transsexual man born in Guatemala City. Alex founded the first group of trans men in Central America, Trans-Formation and started to strengthen trans leadership in Central America. He is also the President of the Central American Network of Trans Men which has created a movement throughout the region and they have recently started working with independent leaders from Cuba and the Dominican Republic. In addition to Alex’s human rights work, he is a professional administrator and husband, father, and grandfather.
Carter Honorée is a Rwandese trans man. He is the Executive Director of Rwanda Gender Pride, a trans-feminist and gender non-conforming organization in Rwanda. He is the Regional Coordinator for Africa for Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT). Between 2014-2018, he worked as the Program Officer of RIFA (Right for all), an LBT/SW organization based in Kigali. His work also includes coordination and facilitating focus group discussions and interviews with intersex, transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in Kigali for research conducted by UHAI EASHRI (East African Sexual Human Rights Initiative). He has been involved in the Taskforce in charge of developing the theme and agenda of the Changing Faces Changing Spaces (CFCS) conference and taken part in UHAI-EASHRI Peer Grant Committee (PGC). He holds a bachelor degree in Accounting/Management and Economics and has completed a Master’s course in International Relations and Diplomatic Studies.
Mikee Inton is an academic and an activist currently serving on the Board of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association (ILGA World) as a representative of the Global Trans Secretariat. She is also a board member of the Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP), the first trans-centered support group and advocacy organization in the country. She earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Cultural Studies at Lingnan University under the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme. She currently teaches undergraduate and graduate programs and courses on Gender Studies, Film and Media Studies, and Feminism. Her research interests include trans representations in film and other popular forms of entertainment, as well as trans-oriented healthcare and decolonizing genders.
Beyonce Karungi is a passionate transgender woman/sex worker rights activist/human rights defender and a queer feminist from Uganda. She started doing activism in 2009 and currently works with Key Affected Populations (KAPs). She has an extensive and profound experience in advocacy around trans* and gender equity issues and is the Executive Director of Transgender Equality Uganda (TEU). Beyonce has been involved in advocacy to prevent violence against women and girls, support sex and sexuality in youth programming on the national level and promote young people, including queer youth, to access friendly sexual and reproductive health and rights services through public education. She has also worked with the International Reference Group on Trans* in partnership with UNDP, UNFPA UNAIDS, PEPFAR, The Global Fund USAID to develop the comprehensive HIV and STIs programs with trans people.
Neish McLean is a trans masculine Jamaican activist with local, regional and international experience in trans advocacy. He enjoys working on proposal writing, program development and movement building and takes a holistic approach to trans activism. He is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of TransWave Jamaica, Vice-Chair of the United Caribbean Trans Network and the Regional Coordinator for the Caribbean for Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT). As the Caribbean Program Officer at OutRight Action International he is responsible for implementing OutRight’s work throughout the region. He holds a BSc. in Psychology which helps in his work as a human rights defender while using his lived reality as a trans person to inform his advocacy. He also holds a Post-Graduate Diploma in Sports Management. He is a sports and fitness enthusiast.
Islèm Mejri is an intersectional LGBTQI+ activist. They previously worked with the Tunisian organization Mawjoudin (We Exist) and were a board member and Project Coordinator for the Tunisian Coalition for LGBTQI+ rights. Islèm is the Regional Coordinator in Africa & the Middle East for Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT). They have also been developing multiple projects and activities to promote a healthy culture of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression and Sex Characteristic (SOGIESC). They have joined ITPC-MENA recently as the Global Fund MENA Platform Manger. Additionally, they are a professional trainer and facilitator. As a psychology graduate and recognized LILO counsellor, Islèm has been using their knowledge in Psychology to provide counselling to LGBTQI+ individuals who are victims of violence and violations to help them start their healing journey.
Isa Noyola is a translatina activist, a national leader in LGBT immigrant rights movement, and the Deputy Director at the Transgender Law Center. She also works extensively for the release of transgender women from ICE detention and an end to deportations. She is a part of the advisory boards of El/La para Translatinas and Familia: Trans, Queer Liberation movement. She helped lead and organize the first ever national trans anti-violence convening that brought together over 100 activists, mostly trans women of color, to address the epidemic of violence that trans communities are facing. Isa is passionate about building the leadership of transgender communities. She is leading programatic strategies to help build a pipeline through the creation of trainings & leadership gatherings to share advocacy tools and strategies. Isa believes that a stronger and more vibrant transgender community is possible when we abolish oppressive systems that criminalize all of our communities especially trans and queer immigrant communities of color.
Karishma Richards is a transgender woman and a Positive activist living with the virus and working for the visibility of transgender people in Liberia. She is the founder and Executive Director of the Transgender Network of Liberia and works to raise the visibility of the trans community in West Africa. She is also passionate about improving the situation of trans sex workers and those living with HIV. Presently she is serving as the Program Coordinator of West African Trans Forum (WATF). She holds a degree in Management and Public Administration.
Vaito’a Toelupe is a proud fa’afafine activist from Samoa. She is a Technical Advisor to the Samoa Fa’afafine Association (SFA). She is the Fa’afafine / SOGIESC Member of the Samoa National Human Rights Council under the Samoa Office of the Ombudsman and National Human Rights Institute, Chairperson of the National Social Development Sector Committee, Board Member of the Pacific Sexual Diversity Network (PSDGN) and the Pacific Regional Coordinator for Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT). Vaito’a is a member of Pacific Islands Regional Multi-Country Coordinating Mechanism (PIRMCCM) Oversight Working Group. In her professional capacity, Vaito’a is a Consultant with the Asia Development Bank (ADB) and has a Bachelor of Arts Degree majoring in International Relations and Foreign Policies from the University of Auckland, New Zealand.
Joe Wong is a trans masculine advocate born in Singapore. As the Executive Director of Asia Pacific Transgender Network (APTN), he provides overall leadership and management and leads the organization to achieve its strategic goals. In his time in APTN, Joe pushed for trans masculine inclusion to the network resulting in the increased visibility and inclusivity of trans masculine people and their issues in the region. His experience includes advocating for trans men’s sexual and reproductive health rights and consulting with communities and health providers to help develop and implement best practice standards for trans people. He has supported nascent groups financially and technically, implementing a sub-granting mechanism to reach nascent groups. Prior to joining APTN, he spent 4 years at Action for AIDS Singapore where he managed the MSM and trans HIV/ AIDS programs. He has also served in advisory roles and leadership roles for many organizations and is currently the Advisor to the Astraea Foundation and Urgent Action Fund Asia Pacific.
Diane Marie Rodríguez Zambrano
Diane Marie Rodríguez Zambrano is a transfeminist, transmother, activist, a psychologist and Master’s candidate in gender and development at the FLACSO of Ecuador. She is the founder of
several groups in her country, such as the Silhouette X Association. She is currently the President of the Ecuadorian Federation of LGBTI Organizations. In order to boost the political
participation of trans populations in 2017, she was chosen as the first openly transexual candidate for a popularly elected position. She developed other campaigns such as: the persecution and closure of de-homosexualization and de-transexualization clinics through the “Tiempo de Igualdad” 2013 campaign, the recognition of the Homosexual Fact Union in 2013, the legal demand
against a television channel for the incitement to hatred against trans women in 2014, Gender in ID Card for trans people in 2015 and Reports of Trans murders in Ecuador from 2013 to date. She is one of the most visible advocates of diversity in Ecuador.
This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)