Saturday, 4 March 2017

Interview with Savannah Burton

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Savannah Burton, a Canadian actress, and accomplished athlete, the first out Trans athlete in Canadian history to compete in team sports internationally. Hello Savannah!
Savannah: Hi Monika! It’s wonderful to talk with you.
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Savannah: I’m originally from Corner Brook, Newfoundland Canada and moved to Toronto in my early 20’s. My 2 biggest passions would have to be acting and participating in sports.
Monika: When did you decide that acting would be your vocation?
Savannah: I’ve loved movies from a very early age. They have the ability to inspire and elicit incredible emotion. After my first acting class in my 20’s I was hooked. Having positive reactions to scenes I was performing made me want to continue this joyful experience we call acting.

Friday, 3 March 2017

Interview with Chloe Schwenke

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Chloe Schwenke, a human rights and peacebuilding activist, development practitioner, and academic with over three decades of international experience, including 15 years of work while based in the Global South. She is the Director of the Global Program on Violence, Rights and Inclusion at the International Center for Research on Women.

Monika: The transgender community is said to be thriving now. As Laverne Cox announced “Trans is beautiful.” Teenage girls become models and dancers, talented ladies become writers, singers, and actresses. Those ladies with interest in politics, science, and business become successful politicians, academics, and businesswomen. What do you think in general about the present situation of transgender women in the American society? Are we just scratching the surface or the change is really happening?
Chloe: I would hardly say that the transgender community is thriving, simply because a few transgender models and actors become celebrities, and a few trans folk are publishing. Yes, we are making our presence known more emphatically, but we are also facing extraordinary push-back, violence, exclusion, humiliation, scapegoating, and – globally – a rising death rate from extreme violence.

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Interview with Erin Swenson

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Erin Swenson, an American licensed psychotherapist, transgender rights activist, the first-known mainstream Protestant minister to make a gender transition and retain ordained office. Since turning age 60, she has completed 34 triathlons, including two Half-Ironman events. Hello Erin! 
Erin: Hi Monika. What an honor to be interviewed by you. Congratulations on your work as a transgender activist.
Monika: When I read about your triathlon experience I thought, wow such a tough lady! Could you say a few words about yourself?
Erin: I think being transgender requires a certain amount of toughness, so my interest in triathlon fits my temperament. I am not fast (although I tend to win/place in age group races) and my goal for every race is to have fun and cross the finish line vertically. I am 70 years old and find the cross-training (swim/bike/run) very helpful to maintain my own health and wellness. But going through a gender transition is MUCH tougher than a Half-Ironman.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Interview with Paula Coffer

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Paula Coffer, a retired US Army Finance Officer with many years of military service in: Vietnam, Germany, Korea, and the United States. She later served with the Department of Defense and Department of State in Afghanistan and is the author of the biographical book entitled “A Walk in Confidence” (2017). Hello Paula!
Paula: Hello Monika and thank you for taking the time for this interview. It is an honor to be a part of the illustrious group you have interviewed in the past.
Monika: You can boast a fantastic military career. Could you say a few words about yourself?
Paula: I enlisted in the US Navy at 17 years of age and during my 4 year enlistment I spent 3 years and 2 months on sea duty while making 3 WesPac (Western Pacific) tours of which 2 were to Vietnam. I joined Army ROTC while in college and accepted a commission as a Finance Officer. During these 24 years I struggled with living the dual identity of satisfying my military responsibilities and family obligations and of accepting my gender identity that I held so close within. Don’t ask, Don’t tell did not exist during my military career. If asked, I had to tell and I would have been released from the military as unfit and probably with an ‘other than honorable’.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Interview with Nova Twelve

Monika: Today’s interview will be with Nova Twelve, a young American video blogger from South Carolina that documents her transition as Nova Twelve on YouTube. Hello Nova!
Nova: Hi Monika! Thank you so much for putting this interview together!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Nova: Sure! I’m from the Williamsburg area of Virginia. I went to Virginia Commonwealth University for an undergraduate degree in Psychology. Later in life, I went to The Citadel for a Masters degree in Counseling.
I also have formal education in Cosmetology and Culinary. But more than my formal education, I’m most proud of my traveling experiences. At the present time, I’ve visited 52 countries. My goal is 100.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Interview with Kendra Brill

Monika: Today it is my pleasure and honour to interview Kendra Brill, the main character of the recently published biographical book titled “The Kendra Brill Story” (2017). Hello Kendra!
Kendra: Hello Monika! ​ 
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself?
Kendra: I'm truly blessed to be the authentic woman that I am! I went from being that sad and lonely William, that everyone knew and loved to being Kendra, a strong and dependable woman.
I have a loving family that I've always wanted and a house that I was blessed with. I have all kinds of people, from all walks of life surrounding me and feeling me with love and encouragement that I truly love and care about. It might not be the family that I was born into, but it's my family through Jesus Christ.
After the hell that I've been through, it really feels nice to be in a loving and caring community. Without their support, I'm not sure if I would've made it as far as I have. They accept the addict, the prostitute, the ex-incarcerated sides of me. They truly love me for every part of me.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Interview with Yvette Tourettes

Monika: Today’s interview will be with Kelly Pärlefrost, a content-maker on YouTube from Stockholm, Sweden. Going by the pseudonym “Yvette Tourettes” on her channel. Hello Kelly!
Kelly: Greetings Monika!
Monika: Could you say a few words about yourself and your daily life?
Kelly: My name is Kelly Pärlefrost, 23 years old (turning 24 this year) from Stockholm, Sweden. I'm an assistant nurse and my job used to be in a hospital ward for old people with various health conditions.
Now I'm going to school to get authorization for college studies so that I can become a pharmacist/chemist. I spend a lot of my free time on YouTube watching other peoples content since I myself like creating similar content. Besides that most of my time is spent being with friends, going out or studying.
Monika: Why did you decide to share your transition details on YouTube?
Kelly: I've always, ever since I began living as a girl at the age of 14/15, had some sort of desire to keep my trans-identity a secret or something not to talk about openly with others. My dream has always been to be a girl like any other cis-girl but I never really wanted to be associated with the word “trans”, because I always thought that other people would view me differently than before.

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