In a few words, how do you identify?

I am a Transwoman of Color.

How do you show up in community & how are you held by your community members?

I have reached out and extended my hand to be someone who can easily be reached as a reliable resource. I like being that face one could relate to by not having judgements or causing embarrassment for personal questions others are afraid to ask. If I don’t have answers, together we’ll find it. There’s no “I’m not on the clock or I’m out to lunch”, when it comes to someone just needing to be heard. The person I am wouldn’t allow me to have boundaries set for Monday through Friday 9 to 5… I love to talk and share my experiences, but mostly I’m a great listener for those who feel they don’t have a voice. That’s when I shine most through them. Assisting with building bridges with medical and Trans identified folx who have been treated unfairly has been my passion. Navigating and educating my community with information that would minimize some of life’s harsh challenges. When I say “I eat, sleep, drink this” it is what it is. 

How do you celebrate and affirm yourself?

My smile, my self worth is self affirming. It’s takes too much energy to be fake or not be my truest self. I may not have a fancy, hard earned college degree, but I have a degree as a “Trans in action,” as I continue to educate and be educated throughout life. Which, in return causes sporadic celebrations that makes the fight worth my purpose in life. So, I’m bringing in 2022 with a growth. Where it’s said, “When ‘I’ becomes ‘We’ even ‘Illness’ becomes ‘Wellness’ One Heart can change the world.

Tell us more about you! How do you spend your time? What brings you joy?

For years I have attended community board meetings, spoke on panels, volunteered in shelters, facilitating meetings learning and educating my LGBTQIA2+ fam. To me, knowing someone else is going to be empowered through me it’s fun. Hair, nails, makeup, fun clothes and smell pretty……that’s my fun. ? I have this passion for a welcoming, warmth and safe space for LGBTQIA+ folx, assisting with Recovery Support Resources for Housing and Wellness. I am the Programs Coordinator at Heart Mind Connect. For more info contact me atstarr@heartmindsconnect.org or go to HeartMindConnect.org to learn more about supporting recovery for our community. 

What is most significant and important to you personally about Black LGBTQ+ history?

Venus Extravaganza was my first inspiration. She was a Trans girl of color in New York in the 80’s. I learned and was instantly inspired by a woman of color, Marsha P. Johnson. When people would ask her what the “P” stands for, she would say, “Pay me no mind“. Marsha certainly empowered me to remind those who had nothing good to say to me or my community, “Pay me no mind!”

What is your favorite aspect of being Black and LGBTQ?

My favorite thing about me is that I love my truest self. I absorb the negative like a sponge and am able to release positive vibes that brings good energy in return. That’s never talked about because the proof is in my walk. 


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