Monday, 29 September 2014

Interview with Bobbie Lang


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Bobbie Lang, a transgender activist from USA, businesswoman, blogger, Viet Nam veteran, the author of "Transgender Christian in Chains". Hello Bobbie!
Bobbie: Hi Monika, thank you so much for asking me to be part of this wonderful group of people who are doing so much to advance the acceptance and civil rights of the trans community.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Bobbie: Well to start with I started my transition in 1981 and had GRS in 1984. At that time the term “transgender” had not even been coined yet. We were called transsexuals and even the professional community knew very little of this dysphoria. Many of the medical and therapeutic specialists thought this disorder could be alleviated with extensive and lengthy psychological treatment. Sadly, I find this approach is still widely believed within most denominational Christian churches.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Interview with Fernanda Milán


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Fernanda Milán, a Guatemalan native, the first transgender person to be granted asylum in Denmark. Hello Fernanda! 
Fernanda: Hi Monika! Thank you for your time and for being so patient with the delay of the interview. I hope you are fine!
Monika: The fight for your asylum in 2013 was a challenging task. Let’s go back to those times. Could you say a few words about your life and Guatemala and emigration to Denmark?
Fernanda: Well, as you say the fight for the asylum was very challenging in so many ways. As for Guatemala, it is a difficult place for a transgender woman. I would like to be more general about the issue of living there because this is the context that I happen to have shared with so many people.
It is an environment of rejection by your family circles, friends, education institutes and work places. When you decide to start transition or to come out of “the closet”, you live ostracized from everything that you know because in general all the girls back there feel that they were born female, which is in contrast with the public opinion that being a trans woman is a choice.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Interview with Jennifer Chavez


Monika: It is my pleasure and honor to interview Jennifer Michelle Chavez a transgender activist and master auto technician from the U.S.A. Hello Jennifer!
Jennifer: Hello Monika and thank you for the opportunity to speak with you!
Monika: Could you please say a few words about yourself?
Jennifer: I would be happy too! I am a 57 year old woman who made the decision to transition 5 years ago! I finally found the courage to face my condition after 52 years and a whole lifetime of stress and turmoil! I knew I was different as early as 4 years of age, and as I grew I learned more about it and what it was called.
I tried to transition when I was a teenager and moved away to Los Angeles from my native Texas, but was thwarted by the many obstacles I encountered. My only regret at this point is that I wish I could have done it back then, but I would not have the greatest gift a person can have and that is my son Cody!

Monday, 22 September 2014

Interview with Rebecca Root


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Rebecca Root, a talented British actress, voice and speech teacher, stand-up comedian, playing the lead role in “Boy Meets Girl” - a recently commissioned sitcom for BBC2 about the relationship between a transgender female in her 40s and a cis-gender male in his… 20s. Hello Rebecca!
Rebecca: Hi Monika, thanks for the warm welcome!
Monika: We are closer and closer to the premiere date of “Boy Meets Girl”. Is your excitement growing?
Rebecca: Certainly! It’s hopefully going to make a bit of a splash. I hope the response will be as upbeat as the early signs have indicated. Having said that, we have a way to go yet – filming should commence in the new year and I don’t know when it will actually hit the screens.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Interview with Denise Brogan-Kator


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Denise Brogan-Kator, a lawyer, transgender activist, Senior Legislative Counsel for the Family Equality Council, a national LGBT rights organization, the former Executive Director of Equality Michigan, co-founder of the Rainbow Law Center, recipient of the 2009 Pride Banquet Committee’s Choice Award, businesswoman, U.S. Navy Submarine Force veteran. Hello Denise!
Denise: Hello, Monika! Thank you for having me.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Denise: Well, the thing that is most present for me, these days, is the birth of my first grand-daughter. So, despite all my accomplishments and activities, being a grandmother is currently my most important and most exciting job. And, family is – and has always been – at the root of my passions. It is such a natural fit for me to work for the Family Equality Council.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Interview with Felicia Flames


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honor to interview Felicia Flames, a transgender pioneer, diva, icon and Screaming Queen, 27 years survivor of AIDS and a Vietnam Veteran - one of the participants of the 1966 Compton's Cafeteria Riot, which was one of the first documented instances of transgender resistance to authority in the USA. Hello Felicia!
Felicia: Hello Monika and thank you for interviewing me, it is an honor for me.
Monika: I must say you can boast one of the most impressive LGBT legends. The Compton's Cafeteria Riot occurred in August 1966, so it preceded the more infamous 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City. However, it is not so well-known …
Felicia: You have to remember it was in the 1960’s, and to a lot of people thought we were sick, mental, trash and nobody cared whether we lived or died. Our own families abandoned us, and we had nowhere to go. And we were tired of the police harassing us because of who we were meant to be.
We were murdered, killed, thrown in jail, raped and thrown out like trash by our families and friends. And in those days, I hear that the mafia had control of the TL, and all documents to this day were lost and no record of that day except for an unknown newsletter that documented that day. And nothing else.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Interview with Allison Woolbert


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honor to interview Allison Woolbert, a transgender activist from the USA, Air Force veteran, founder of The Transgender Violence Tracking Portal - a database to track crimes targeting transgender people, and the Executive Director of the Transgender Human Rights Institute. Hello Allison!
Allison: Hi Monika- First, thank you so much for selecting me for being a heroine. It is truly an honor to be able to do an interview with you.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Allison: Well, I grew up in Silver Bell, Arizona, a remote copper mining community (now a ghost town) where I never quite fit in. I ended up in the Air Force where I absolutely didn’t fit in, and in 2008, I began the process of transition. I finally feel whole as a person, and feel that I truly fit into myself. I’m the CEO of Phoenix Consultants Group, a software development company. I’m also the Founder of the Transgender Violence Tracking Portal and the new Executive Director of the Transgender Human Rights Institute.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Interview with Gia Versace


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honor to interview Gia Versace, an American entertainer and beauty pageant queen. Hello Gia!
Gia: Aloha Monika!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Gia: Sure, I was born and raised on the windward side of Oahu in a city called Kaneohe, Hawaii.
Monika: When did you decide that you would like to be a stage artist?
Gia: My fascination with the stage began when I took drama class in high school and it became real clear that I wanted to be a showgirl when I saw my first drag show in a night club called Venus.
Monika: Could you name some of the venues and shows in which you participated?
Gia: I have done shows and many fundraisers and night clubs such as Venus, which is now called Bar 7, and I am currently a showgirl at Fusions Waikiki (home of the two longest running female impersonation shows in Hawaii).

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Interview with Lora G


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Lora G, a Hollywood, California - based composer, guitarist and keyboardist, co-founder of Lunden Reign. Hello Lora G!
Lora G: Hi Monika, thank you for reaching out to me.
Monika: When did you decide that music would be your way of life?
Lora G: I started performing at the age of 13 in Orange County, California. By 16 I started performing on the Sunset Strip scene in Hollywood. The amazing Matt Sorum (Velvet Revolver, Guns N’ Roses, The Cult) was my drummer in high school. By 18, I had the luck to be involved in finding guitar sounds for Stevie Wonder’s album “Secret Life of Plants.”
However, at 19 I left music to go to college. I didn’t return to music until after an amazing Emmy winning career in television and radio including working for Disney over 14 years. I returned to music about 7 years ago after realizing how much I missed it.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Interview with Helen Belcher


Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Helen Belcher, a British trans rights campaigner, member of the UK Parliamentary Forum on Gender Identity, one of the founders of Trans Media Watch, software developer and businesswoman. Hello Helen!
Helen: Hi Monika!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Helen: It depends what you want to know. I’ve just turned 50, I’m happily married with two fantastic children who are in their teens, I’ve been a computer geek since my teens, and have run my own company for the past 10 years selling software that I’ve written.
I sing in a good local choir, I’m a school governor, and I campaign on trans rights. It could all sound incredibly glamorous, but there is a lot of hard work and, generally, I think I’m incredibly boring! It’s just that I’ve had the good fortune to be in some of the right places at some of the right times.

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