Trans 100 List Highlights HIV/AIDS Leaders

Associate Editor

The Trans 100 has a two-part mission: to provide an overview of the breadth and diversity of work being done in, by and for the transgender community in the U.S., and to act as a resource for the transgender community and its allies across the globe. The list highlights exceptional work done by and for transgender people, promotes those who may not otherwise receive recognition and increases positive visibility for the transgender community as a whole.

The 2015 list features several people working against the HIV/AIDS epidemic and addressing the massive impact of HIV on transgender people. According to one statistic from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, transgender women are 49 times more likely to contract HIV than the average person in the U.S. (Statistics about transgender men and HIV are not available, because transgender men are so vastly understudied.)

This year's honorees include:

Joe Ippolito

Joe Ippolito

Ippolito is a doctor of psychology who has written extensively on transgender health. He has held chair positions with the American Psychological Association and The Philadelphia Transhealth Conference. He also co-authored a chapter in the book Trans Bodies, Trans Selves and was the recipient of a 2002 HIV/AIDS Prevention and Treatment Award for his work as an advocate.

 
Sandy Evan James

Sandy Evan James

After spending a decade as a forensic toxicologist, James launched a new career as a civil rights advocate focused on laws and policies that affect transgender people. He serves on the board of Whitman-Walker Health, a community health center providing culturally competent care to the LGBT community and those living with HIV.

 

Bryn Kelly

Bryn Kelly

Kelly is a Brooklyn-based writer, artist and performer. Her writing has been featured in several websites and anthologies. She has written short fiction for the journal Time Is Not a Line: Reflections on HIV/AIDS Now, commissioned by the New Museum and EOAGH, a Journal of the Arts.

 

Aryah Lester

Aryah Lester

Lester is the current chair for the state of Florida Health Department's Transgender Work Group, and a member of Trans* Action Florida, an advisory board of Equality Florida. She is also a member of the National Alliance of State & Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD) transgender group.

 

Kristen Parker Lovell

Kristen Lovell

Lovell is working to carry on Sylvia Rivera's legacy to support transient young people. She currently works at Sylvia's Place/ MCCNY Charities, Inc., New York City's only emergency queer youth shelter, as the program coordinator for HIV testing and counseling. She also is helping to relaunch STARR, the radical transgender activist group started by Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson in 1972.

 

Tommy Luckett

Tommy Luckett

Luckett advocates for people living with HIV, working to remedy the health care disparities faced by transgender people. She attended the annual Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) meeting, participating in a panel on Medicaid expansion and private options. Luckett was the Arkansas state coordinator for AIDSWatch 2014 in Washington, D.C. Recently, Luckett was appointed to the steering committee of the US People Living with HIV (PLHIV) Caucus.

 

Alexis P. Paige

Alexis P. Paige

Paige is a mixed-race Korean transgender woman who has assisted in the planning of the Meaningful Care Conference, a national LGBTQ medical conference, and in the promotion of Oregon's Medicaid program ending exclusion of transition-related transgender health care. Currently, she works at the Cascade AIDS Project assisting people in applying for health care and is a member of the Trans Inclusion committee at the Cascade AIDS Project. She also volunteers as an HIV tester and counselor at monthly transgender community nights at Pivot in Portland, Oregon, and as an operator for the Trans Lifeline.

 

LaLa Zannell

LaLa Zannell

Zannell is the community organizer at the New York City Anti-Violence Project (AVP) and is the public face of AVP's community organizing work, doing advocacy, outreach and networking on behalf of LGBTQ New Yorkers who have experienced violence. Zannell also plays a key role in AVP's Rapid Incident Response team, which responds to incidents of hate violence, sexual violence or intimate partner violence impacting LGBTQ and HIV-affected New Yorkers.

To read the full list online or download the 2015 Trans 100 booklet, you can visit the Trans 100.

Mathew Rodriguez is the community editor for TheBody.com and TheBodyPRO.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @mathewrodriguez, like his Facebook page or visit him on his personal website.