Gender Odyssey Professional

Workshops & Presenters

At GO Pro 2013, leading experts will offer sessions covering gender identity across the lifespan. Sessions offered:

Adult Focus
Day One – July 31st
Youth Focus
Day Two – August 1st

Wednesday – Adult Focus

Welcome and Orientation

This brief session is designed to familiarize attendees with key terminology and concepts that will serve as a foundation for the remainder of this seminar.

Transition: The Internal and External Journey

So often, a gender transition is portrayed as the end result of a deeply personal exploration. While this is a strong component, there are a great deal of external factors that can impact a person’s life and subsequent gender decisions. During this session, we will examine the concept of gender identity, gender expression, gender fluidity, and the complexity involved in a person’s self-determination and the implications on that person’s family, career & job history, friendships, community, faith, and society as a whole. The aim of this workshop is to expand the conversation of an individual’s gender transition beyond the most basic questions of “Should I?” or “Shouldn’t I?”

Aydin KennedyAydin Kennedy lives in Chico, CA. He holds an Advanced Generalist Practice MSW and has been working with the queer and trans* community since 1998. For the last 10 years he has provided trainings on privilege, heteronormativity, and heterosexism and their subsequent impact on gender and sexual minority people throughout Northern California. Aydin is the founder of Stonewall Alliance Center’s community counseling program where he provides clinical services to trans* adults, youth, and their families.

Susan LandonSusan P. Landon, MA, MFT, is the director of the Child and Adolescent Program at the Los Angeles Gender Center. She has worked with gender diverse children and their families for over 25 years. She provides a welcoming and supportive environment for children, adolescents, and their families to explore the many aspects of diverse gender expression and identity. She offers in-service trainings on gender diversity for parents, teachers, and school administrators.

Medical Considerations of Hormone Administration For Transgender Adults

This session will provide a brief overview, system by system, of the desired and undesired effects of hormone therapy.   We will also examine lab markers and medications that can be affected by hormone administration.  This is a lecture presentation with time allotted for Q&A.

Carolyn FullerDr. Carolyn Fuller is a naturopathic physician, licensed as a primary care provider, with a private practice in Seattle.  She is a family practice doctor with a subspecialty in transgender health.  As a doctor and teacher, she seeks to empower and educate her patients on their path to optimum health. She has worked with the trans community professionally and through volunteer work for almost a decade and has lectured to many audiences regarding transgender health.  She is dedicated to living and helping others live an authentic, empowered, healthy life!  To find out more:  www.carolynfullernd.com

Gender on the Job

Can an employer refuse to hire or fire you because of your gender expression or identity? What if you are the subject of harassment at work?  What about gender-based dress codes? What is an employer’s responsibility when an employee transitions on the job? This workshop highlights equal employment laws, with an emphasis on issue spotting and assisting clients who face possible legal conflicts arising in the workplace.

Beth BloomBeth Barrett Bloom is a partner with Frank Freed Subit & Thomas in Seattle where she represents individuals in employment matters.  Her practice includes advocacy for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender clients facing discrimination in the workplace including discrimination related to gender identity, expression, and transition.  Beth speaks regularly at continuing legal education seminars on GLBT employment law. AVVO.com recently recognized Beth with its 2012 Client Choice Award.

 

Maintaining Relationships Through Transition

There can be much discussion on how to best support someone through a gender transition and often very little discussion addressing the ways we can support and nurture the partners or other loved ones. A gender transition can be overwhelming and liberating for a trans person. It can result in some pretty profound changes for a spouse/partner as well. The stress can be very hard on both people. Many relationships, even loving, supportive ones, often do not survive the upheaval because this support and understanding can be hard to find. Partners often find themselves in the advocate/educator role with others while providing the bulk of the emotional support to their transitioning spouse. This leaves them isolated, drained, and nowhere to turn for any resulting difficulties they might be experiencing. In this workshop, we will discuss ways of offering support to partners, and insights into how an individual’s gender transition is really a transition for everyone.

Megan Smith-Sallans, MS, LMHP, CPC, is a psychotherapist in private practice.  For over a decade, Megan has specialized in working with queer communities and has received and administered training both nationally and internationally in the area of queer sexualities and gender identity.  Megan works with children, adolescents, adults, families, and partners.  Furthermore, Megan is the proud partner of a transgender man who is an activist and author.

The Road To Expert

Whether you are a doctor, therapist, educator, or other professional, there is no established pathway to become an “expert” on issues related to transgender care and/or experience. Existing educational courses, subjective written resources, and “current” research are inadequate to address the complexity of trans lives and the ever-increasing requests for knowledgeable care or support. In light of this, how does one begin? How did current experts gain their experience? How do you address this issue with patients, clients, students, or other peers in a responsible manner? Join us as we explore these questions, examine the current state of trans care, and learn how interested professionals might engage in this work.

Ryan SallansRyan K. Sallans, MA, is a public speaker, diversity trainer, consultant, and author specializing in healthcare and workplace issues surrounding the LGBTQIA community. For the past three years he has served as the lead subject-matter expert for Arms Risk Affiliate Management, Inc., in the development of e-learning courses for medical providers seeking CMEs in LGBTQ healthcare and cultural competency. He also works with organizations and universities on LGBTQ social issues, and media literacy related to eating disorders and body image. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in English and Anthropology, Master of Arts in English, and a Master of Arts in Educational Psychology.

Jennifer Hastings, MD, is a family practice doctor in Santa Cruz, CA, and the director of the transgender health care program at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte. Jen started the PPMM transgender health care program in 2005 and has been actively involved in transgender health care services for PPFA and Planned Parenthoods around the country. Jen is a member of the medical advisory board of the UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health, on the steering committee for the UCSF Child and Adolescent Gender Center, and Medical Director of Conference Programming for Gender Spectrum. As a passionate advocate for queer and gender creative youth and adults, Jen works to increase medical access and understanding about the trans journey.

Helping Transgender Parents Navigate the Family Law System

Some transgender people do not identify as transgender until adulthood, by which time they may have children. When this happens, a transgender parent’s decision to transition may cause strain in the family and lead to a custody dispute between the parents.  In some cases, the non-transgender parent may try to use the other parent’s transition or transgender status against them. Many courts have placed heavy restrictions on transgender parents’ rights—and even in a few cases terminated a transgender parent’s parental rights—based on misconceptions and fears about transgender people. When working on custody cases involving transgender parents, courts need to be given accurate information about what it means to be transgender and the fact that transgender status has no impact on parenting ability. Counselors and therapists who are knowledgeable about assisting parents who are transitioning play a vital role in these cases because when handled properly and in an age-appropriate manner, a parent’s transition can be an overall positive experience for the children. This workshop will provide participants with information about the medical and mental health standards of care regarding transgender adults as well as legal counseling strategies for resolving these custody disputes.

Cathy SakimuraCathy Sakimura oversees NCLR’s family law work and helps supervise the work of the legal team. She also runs NCLR’s Family Protection Project, which improves access to services for low-income LGBT parents and their children, with a focus on increasing services to families of color. This project provides free legal information to low-income LGBT parents and their children; trains and supports attorneys providing free and low-cost services; and works in coalition with organizations serving communities of color to provide culturally competent services. Previously, Cathy worked at Gay-Straight Alliance Network, where she empowered young people to combat harassment in their schools and participated in a multi-organization project linking work against homophobia with work against racism. In 2012, she was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association. 

Surgical Options For MTF and FTM

This session will offer a PowerPoint presentation discussing current surgical techniques available for transgender men and women. Dr. Meltzer and Dr. Webb will discuss a variety of procedures including possible risks and/or complications. Before and after photos will be presented and time for questions and answers will be allotted. Drs. Meltzer and Webb attend Gender Odyssey annually to provide attendees with up-to-date information and to allow direct one-on-one consultation time for those considering surgery.

Dr. Toby Meltzer LSU Medical School, U of M Residency Plastic Surgery (PS)
Board Certifications: ASGS, ASPS. Burn Fellow – Detroit Receiving
Member ASPS, AMA, Dingman Society
Alpha Omega Alpha, Best 5th- year Resident, Senior Teaching Resident
Published in Peer Reviewed Journals, Reviewer for Plastic Surgery Journal
OHSU – 1990, Asst. Clinical, Asst. Professor and Co-director Hand and Microvascular Fellowship at OHSU. Surgeon of record in over 500 micro cases. Chief, VAMC (PS) 1990-96
Eastmoreland Hospital and Private Practice 1996-2003(OR).
2003-present (AZ) SHC Osborn, Greenbaum, SHC Shea, Kaiser Permanent, SF, CA
Licensed in Arizona and California
Performs over 240 transgender surgeries per year
FtM: GRS, Chest, body contouring, repairs and revisions.
MtF: GRS, FFS, body contouring, breast augmentation, and repairs and revisions.
For more info: www.tmeltzer.com

Dr. Burt Webb, a Tulane Medical School graduate (1980), began his work with Dr. Meltzer in 2003. He is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology.  Dr. Webb is an OBGYN Physician Advisor to the Mayo Clinic Family Practice Residency Program and an OBGYN for the Scottsdale Center for Women’s Health. Dr. Webb has been an OBGYN professor for the Scottsdale Memorial Hospital Osborn Family Practice Residency Program as well as assistant professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. From 1996 – 2003, he was the designated on-call OBGYN trauma physician at Scottsdale Memorial Hospital Osborn and was the designated instructor/advisor for the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Program. Dr. Webb has received the distinction of an Arizona Top Doc of the year and was awarded Medical Professor of the Year from the Family Practice Residency Program.  

Intersectionality: It’s More Than Just Gender

While transgender people are a small percentage of the overall population, there is certainly not one single profile that can be established to describe the wide-ranging, diverse lives of the transgender experience. Trans lives are so much more than “male” to “female” and vice versa. There are aspects of identity that greatly influence the journey to one’s authenticity. A person’s skin color can dramatically impact the ways—positively or negatively—in which society responds to that person and the resulting privilege or lack thereof. Additional aspects include one’s age, one’s level of education and class background, and level of physical and/or mental ability. Understanding these components and the unique experiences they inspire will help any professional as they seek to serve an individual and understand the collective trans* community.

Trystan CottenTrystan Cotten is an associate professor of gender and African American studies at California State University, Stanislaus. His research and teaching focus on gender, sexuality, race, and nationalism in trans migrations and diasporas. He is also the managing editor of Transgress Press and principal architect of its focus as a social entrepreneurial publishing firm devoted to empowering trans communities. His most recent books are: Hung Jury: Testimonies of Genital Surgery by Transsexual Men (Transgress Press 2012) and Transgender Migrations: The Bodies, Borders, and Politics of Transition (Routledge 2011).

Trans* In The Elder Years

Aging as trans* or genderqueer people involves a wide range of rewards and challenges. Some people are aware all their lives of their trans* or genderqueer feelings and do not feel able to live their genders authentically until they are older. What is it like to change your gender presentation as a mature adult? How do those extra years help or hinder the process? Others who live as trans* or genderqueer from younger ages find that how they want to express their gender changes as they age. What changes, why, and how? What kind of care do we want or expect as we age and increasingly need to call upon others for help? What are the needs and concerns of trans* and genderqueer people in old age and as they approach death?

Aaron DevorAaron Devor, PhD, has been studying and teaching about transgender-related questions for 30 years. He is the author of numerous scholarly articles and the widely-acclaimed books Gender Blending: Confronting the Limits of Duality (1989) and FTM: Female-To-Male Transsexuals in Society (1997). He has delivered lectures to audiences around the world, including more than 20 keynote and plenary addresses. He is a nationally-award-winning teacher, an elected member of the International Academy of Sex Research, and a Fellow of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality. He was one of the authors of versions 6 and 7 of the WPATH Standards of Care. Dr. Devor is the academic director of the world’s largest Transgender Archives, a professor of Sociology, and was the dean of graduate studies at the University of Victoria from 2002 to 2012. In 2002, at age 51, he transitioned on the job while dean.

Hung Jury: Testimonies of Genital Surgery By Transsexual Men

Hung Jury is the first book of personal testimonies focusing exclusively on genital surgery of female-to-male trans bodies. Stories document the intricacies, ups and downs of genital surgery and the many transformative ways it changes transsexual men’s lives. These journeys of courage, risk, trial and triumph speak to readers of all walks of life. Testimonies are a valuable companion for those considering genital surgery and will educate others who want to learn more about female-to-male gender transitions. Clinicians, therapists, and partners of trans men will also gain insight into a dimension of transitioning that is rarely discussed and learn how to support them in their quest.

Trystan Cotten, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Gender and African American Studies at California State University, Stanislaus. His research and teaching focus on gender, sexuality, race, and nationalism in trans migrations and diasporas. He is also the Managing Editor of Transgress Press and principal architect of its focus as a social entrepreneurial publishing firm devoted to empowering trans communities. His most recent books are: Hung Jury: Testimonies of Genital Surgery by Transsexual Men (Transgress Press 2012) and Transgender Migrations: The Bodies, Borders, and Politics of Transition (Routledge 2011).

Both/And: Exploration of Informed Consent, WPATH, and Trans* Access To Healthcare

Please join us for this moderated panel discussion on standards of care for transition-related healthcare for trans* youth and adults.  The WPATH (World Professional Association of Transgender Health) standards of care have evolved a great deal from the original Harry Benjamin standards to WPATH version 7.  The informed consent model is being practiced more and more widely as a means to address a number of issues and barriers that have been problematic to trans*  individuals.  We often hear from clinicians and physicians alike a great deal of confusion about WPATH, informed consent, the ways that they overlap and/or differ, which best serves trans* clients, and how to know which model is best suited to an individual’s needs. Our goal is not to debate the merits of these two approaches but to have an engaging, collaborative dialogue about trans health care, and work toward a standard of care that gives consumers agency over their bodies and decisions.

Our panelists have been historically involved with evolution of the WPATH standards as well as the development and dissemination of the informed consent model.  Panelists are therapists and advocates who work with youth, adults, and/or parents and trans healthcare consumers.  Some panelists will share their own reflections as both treatment providers and trans* individuals who have received transition-related care and experienced some of these issues firsthand.

Stacey PrinceModerator: Stacey Prince is a cisgender, queer psychologist in private practice in Seattle.  She works with adults, couples (same-sex, heterosexual, poly, kink), and transgender clients including transition support, couples and family work, and general psychotherapy. She co-founded the Therapists and Physicians Consult Group at Ingersoll Center for providers working with transgender clients, and Beyond the Bridge, whose mission is to eradicate queer youth suicide.

Panel Participants:

Aaron DevorAaron Devor, PhD, a nationally-award-winning teacher at the University of Victoria, is a member of the International Academy of Sex Research, and a Fellow of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality. He coauthored versions 6 and 7 of the WPATH Standards of Care and is the director of the world’s largest transgender archives. Devor authored Gender Blending: Confronting the Limits of Duality (1989) and FTM: Female-to-Male Transsexuals in Society (1997). Devor was dean of graduate studies from 2002 to 2012 and while dean, transitioned on the job at the age of 51.

Jamison GreenJamison Green, PhD, is an internationally respected author, educator, and advocate for transgender civil rights, health, and social safety.  Architect of the community’s efforts to reform health insurance coverage, he is also president-elect of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, and author of Becoming a Visible Man. He is one of the world’s most visible and influential trans men.

Jude PattonJude Patton is a pioneer (out FTM since 1972), advocate, and support person for the LGBTIQ? communities.  He served on HBIGDA  (now WPATH) Board of Directors as a “consumer advocate/advisor” for six years when the first Standards of Care were suggested in 1979, and again from 1997 to 2001, contributing to several revisions of the SOC. He is a psychiatric physician assistant, marriage and family therapist, and mental health counselor. He currently works for Shifa Health in Mount Vernon, WA.

Marsha BotzerMarsha Botzer is a founding member of Equal Rights Washington, a past co-chair of Seattle’s LBGT Commission, and co-chair of NGLTF in 2005-6 and 2009-10. She founded Seattle’s Ingersoll Center, served as national co-chair of the 2008 Obama Pride Campaign, on the leadership committee of Equality Across America, received the Jose Julio Sarria Civil Rights Award, the Washington State GLBT Bar Association Award, and is on the Trans 100 List.

canellicanelli is a transgender and queer therapist working in Seattle to promote transgender liberation. His main focus is to help heal the trauma caused by cultural oppression, misogyny, and capitalism. In addition to being a therapist, canelli likes to make art and food for his friends and family and is a friend to all animals.

Aidan KeyAidan Key is an educator, organizer, activist, and author. Key is the founder of the Gender Odyssey conference, the Gender Odyssey Family conference, and Gender Odyssey Pro, an annual conference for professionals. Through his organization, Gender Diversity, Key facilitates an expanding network of support groups for parents of transgender children and leads trainings for schools, providers, and youth-based agencies.

The T Within Lgbt Community And Beyond
Keynote Address

Transgender lives and communities have long been sidelined within the greater gay and lesbian community with many offering up the Sesame Street refrain of, “One of these things just doesn’t belong here…” Efforts at greater inclusion have increased and yet still, does the T belong? Ryan Sallans will discuss the ways the “gender” community fits within the sexual minority community and the ways it doesn’t. The examination of gender identity and gender expression is redefining and reshaping the LGBT community in profound ways. Generational differences complicate this metamorphosis even more. Join Ryan Sallans as he offers his perspective.

Ryan SallansRyan K. Sallans, MA, is a public speaker, diversity trainer, consultant, and author specializing in healthcare and workplace issues surrounding the LGBTQIA community. For the past three years he has served as the lead subject-matter expert for Arms Risk Affiliate Management, Inc., in the development of e-learning courses for medical providers seeking CMEs in LGBTQ healthcare and cultural competency. He also works with organizations and universities on LGBTQ social issues, and media literacy related to eating disorders and body image. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in English and Anthropology, Master of Arts in English, and a Master of Arts in Educational Psychology.

Thursday – Youth Focus

Welcome and Orientation

This brief session is designed to familiarize attendees with key terminology and concepts that will serve as a foundation for the remainder of this seminar.

Assessing Gender Identity In Adolescents For Possible Medical Intervention: Part 1

This first half of this comprehensive double session will focus on assessing gender identity concerns in children, recommendations for providing supportive therapy during the childhood years, and ways to support parents who have a gender-variant child. In addition, the issue of early social transitioning will be addressed, including the pros and cons to consider and discuss with families who are contemplating this path.

The second half of the workshop will focus on evaluating adolescents for possible medical interventions, such as puberty-blocking medication and cross-sex hormone treatment. A description of the Gender Management Service at Boston Children’s Hospital, the most well-established clinic treating transgender adolescents in the United States, will be given. Throughout the two-part workshop, recommendations for working sensitively with transgender children and adolescents in all medical and mental health settings will be provided. Finally, common challenging situations (e.g., medical appointments, school problems, and broader community concerns) that arise for gender-variant children, adolescents, and their families will be discussed along with ideas for how to assist patients and families with these issues.

Laura Edwards-LeeperDr. Laura Edwards-Leeper, PhD, is an assistant professor in the School of Professional Psychology at Pacific University. Previously, she worked at Seattle Children’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School. She was the founding psychologist for the Gender Management Service (GeMS) at Boston Children’s Hospital where she completed comprehensive psychological evaluations with transgender adolescents to help determine whether a medical intervention was in their best interest. Dr Edwards-Leeper was trained by the renowned Dr. Peggy Cohen-Kettenis in the Dutch clinic. She continues her involvement with GeMS research endeavors, has coauthored book chapters and peer-reviewed journal articles, and has been interviewed by various media outlets. Dr. Edwards-Leeper is a member of the American Psychological Association Task Force, developing practice guidelines for working with transgender individuals, and has been identified as a national expert in this area.

The Medical Needs Of Transgender Youth: Puberty Delay

The physical changes of puberty often bring about growing distress to gender-questioning youth, as they see an increasing discrepancy between their physical bodies and their perceived gender. Puberty-blocking agents, such as the GnRH agonist leuprolide (Lupron), have been used for a number of years in gender-questioning youth who are showing the earliest physical changes of adolescence. Delaying puberty allows the young teen a “cooling off” period, during which they can concentrate their energies on consolidating their gender identity without having to worry about the ticking clock of puberty. As well, the use of puberty-blocking agents prevents the development of adult physical changes (e.g., breast growth in natal girls, beard growth in natal boys), sometimes obviating the need for expensive surgeries or electrolysis down the road. Puberty blockers—when correctly used—have been demonstrated to improve the psychosocial outcomes in transgender youth. This session will address the use of this class of drugs in gender-questioning youth.

Dr. Johanna OlsonJohanna Olson, MD, is an adolescent medicine physician specializing in the care of transgender youth, gender-variant children, and youth with HIV. Board certified in pediatrics and adolescent medicine, Dr. Olson has been an assistant professor at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for the past five years. She has appeared several times on national television to educate audiences about the needs of transgender youth. Dr. Olson speaks around the country about the importance of providing quality mental health and medical care for gender-nonconforming children and adolescents.

Know Your Rights: Advocating For Trans Students and Creating Gender Inclusive Schools (Part 1 of 2)

Like all school-age youth, transgender youth spend the majority of their day in school. Unfortunately, for many transgender youth, the school environment is either unwelcoming or overtly hostile. That negative environment significantly affects the physical and mental well-being of transgender youth, resulting in poorer academic performance and higher rates of substance abuse and suicide, among other problems. Advocates, professionals, and parents of trans youth are in a unique position to identify and address those issues whether through training and/or advocacy. This workshop will provide participants with an overview of the unique needs of transgender youth in schools and the legal tools that can be used to advocate for the needs of trans youth. Additionally, for those desiring to work with or within schools to create a gender inclusive, supportive environment, we will explore the following topics:

  • Addressing instances of teasing or bullying
  • Gender-segregated spaces such as bathrooms and locker rooms
  • Gender-inclusive policies
  • Addressing questions of students in an age-appropriate manner
  • Addressing concerns/questions of parents
  • Legal responsibilities in schools
  • Name changes, school IDs, and school records
  • Gender-inclusive language in the classroom

This two-part session presents valuable information for ensuring a trans youth’s successful school experience and creating a more gender-inclusive school community. We hope you’ll join us. There will be time for Q&A as well as addressing specific situations you may have already encountered.

Cathy SakimuraCathy Sakimura oversees NCLR’s family law work and helps supervise the work of the legal team. She also runs NCLR’s Family Protection Project, which improves access to services for low-income LGBT parents and their children, with a focus on increasing services to families of color. This project provides free legal information to low-income LGBT parents and their children; trains and supports attorneys providing free and low-cost services; and works in coalition with organizations serving communities of color to provide culturally competent services. Previously, Cathy worked at Gay-Straight Alliance Network, where she empowered young people to combat harassment in their schools and participated in a multi-organization project linking work against homophobia with work against racism. In 2012, she was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.

Aidan KeyAidan Key is the director of Gender Diversity, an organization that provides education to teachers, staff, counselors, and administrators regarding gender-inclusive schools grades K-12. Additionally, he provides support for families of transgender and gender-nonconforming children and teens through his support groups at Seattle Children’s Hospital. Key speaks regularly to universities and organizations seeking to expand their knowledge of issues related to gender identity in children and adults. Aidan Key is the founder and director of the Gender Odyssey and Gender Odyssey Family conferences.

Kim PearsonKim Pearson is one of the nation’s most experienced educators regarding gender diversity in children. Her success at bringing meaningful understanding to audiences is rooted in accurately identifying and speaking to the level of awareness unique to participants. Drawing from her personal journey as the mother of a transgender child, her professional connections with leading experts, and her vast experience as a transition facilitator, Kim empowers families, educators, and others by providing the tools for success.

Mike ColbreseMike Colbrese is the executive director of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.  He was named as the WIAA’s 4th executive director in the fall of 1993, after serving 6 years as the commissioner of the Wyoming High School Activities Association.  He also served as assistant to the executive secretary of the Montana High School Association for 5 years, taught high school English for 11 years, and worked as a high school and college football and basketball official for 15 years. When schools contacted WIAA to seek guidance on transgender student participation in sports and other activities, WIAA offered a well-intentioned but outdated proposal.  Mike and WIAA then sought and responded to community input and, in 2008, drafted a policy that has since served as a model for the nation.

Success Tips For Working With Trans* Youth

Trans* youth experience many unique challenges during transition. Everything from dealing with peers, parents to secondary sex characteristics and typical issues of adolescence become major impediments to development. It is imperative for healthcare professionals to take into account the relevant systemic variables—family, friends, siblings, school, spiritual affiliation, extracurricular activities, medical community—with which the young person interacts. This workshop will examine the primary clinician’s role in supporting a minor and family members as they navigate their way through these complex systems.

Michele AngelloDr. Michele Angello offers individual, couples, group, and family therapy, as well as corporate education and training on a variety of issues concerning sexuality. She has presented internationally on her work with transgender, gender-variant, and gender-nonconforming youth.  She facilitates several monthly support groups for transgender adults, youth, and parents and offers sessions to people around the world via webcam.  Dr. Angello has appeared as a guest expert on Dr. Phil, Larry King Live, The Tyra Banks Show, ABC Primetime, Dr. Oz, and many more shows and documentaries.  She is also an adjunct professor at Widener University and has developed the first graduate course in the U.S. that focuses on clinical issues in transgender communities.  Her private practice is in Pennsylvania.

Assessing Gender Identity In Adolescents For Possible Medical Intervention: Part 2

This first half of this comprehensive double session will focus on assessing gender identity concerns in children, recommendations for providing supportive therapy during the childhood years, and ways to support parents who have a gender-variant child. In addition, the issue of early social transitioning will be addressed, including the pros and cons to consider and discuss with families who are contemplating this path.

The second half of the workshop will focus on evaluating adolescents for possible medical interventions, such as puberty-blocking medication and cross-sex hormone treatment. A description of the Gender Management Service at Boston Children’s Hospital, the most well-established clinic treating transgender adolescents in the United States, will be given. Throughout the two-part workshop, recommendations for working sensitively with transgender children and adolescents in all medical and mental health settings will be provided. Finally, common challenging situations (e.g., medical appointments, school problems, and broader community concerns) that arise for gender-variant children, adolescents, and their families will be discussed along with ideas for how to assist patients and families with these issues.

Laura Edwards-LeeperDr. Laura Edwards-Leeper, PhD, is an assistant professor in the School of Professional Psychology at Pacific University. Previously, she worked at Seattle Children’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School. She was the founding psychologist for the Gender Management Service (GeMS) at Boston Children’s Hospital where she completed comprehensive psychological evaluations with transgender adolescents to help determine whether a medical intervention was in their best interest. Dr Edwards-Leeper was trained by the renowned Dr. Peggy Cohen-Kettenis in the Dutch clinic. She continues her involvement with GeMS research endeavors, has coauthored book chapters and peer-reviewed journal articles, and has been interviewed by various media outlets. Dr. Edwards-Leeper is a member of the American Psychological Association Task Force, developing practice guidelines for working with transgender individuals, and has been identified as a national expert in this area.

Taking On the Giants: Strategy-Sharing For Optimizing Health Insurance

The healthcare insurance industry has long excluded transgender-related care.  This is beginning to change but many barriers still exist.  These barriers to competent care can be related to geographical region, lack of information, specific exclusions, and politicized environments. We will explore these topics, look at specific case studies, and more during this session.

Angela PeroneAngie Perone is a staff attorney at the National Center for Lesbian Rights.  She has represented workers in numerous discrimination and harassment cases and facilitated workshops through the Transgender Rights Project.  Angie is also a member of the LGBT Advisory Committee to the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and volunteers with the AIDS Legal Referral Panel, Workers’ Rights Clinic, and San Francisco Botanical Garden Society. She received her B.A. from the University of Illinois in 2003 with concentrations in Women’s Studies, Afro-American Studies, and Political Science. Angela received her J.D. from UC Hastings College of the Law in 2006 with a concentration in Public Interest Law.

Know Your Rights: Advocating For Trans Students and Creating Gender Inclusive Schools (Part 2 of 2)

Like all school-age youth, transgender youth spend the majority of their day in school. Unfortunately, for many transgender youth, the school environment is either unwelcoming or overtly hostile. That negative environment significantly affects the physical and mental well-being of transgender youth, resulting in poorer academic performance and higher rates of substance abuse and suicide, among other problems. Advocates, professionals, and parents of trans youth are in a unique position to identify and address those issues whether through training and/or advocacy. This workshop will provide participants with an overview of the unique needs of transgender youth in schools and the legal tools that can be used to advocate for the needs of trans youth. Additionally, for those desiring to work with or within schools to create a gender inclusive, supportive environment, we will explore the following topics:

  • Addressing instances of teasing or bullying
  • Gender-segregated spaces such as bathrooms and locker rooms
  • Gender-inclusive policies
  • Addressing questions of students in an age-appropriate manner
  • Addressing concerns/questions of parents
  • Legal responsibilities in schools
  • Name changes, school IDs, and school records
  • Gender-inclusive language in the classroom

This two-part session presents valuable information for ensuring a trans youth’s successful school experience and creating a more gender-inclusive school community. We hope you’ll join us. There will be time for Q&A as well as addressing specific situations you may have already encountered.

Cathy SakimuraCathy Sakimura oversees NCLR’s family law work and helps supervise the work of the legal team. She also runs NCLR’s Family Protection Project, which improves access to services for low-income LGBT parents and their children, with a focus on increasing services to families of color. This project provides free legal information to low-income LGBT parents and their children; trains and supports attorneys providing free and low-cost services; and works in coalition with organizations serving communities of color to provide culturally competent services. Previously, Cathy worked at Gay-Straight Alliance Network, where she empowered young people to combat harassment in their schools and participated in a multi-organization project linking work against homophobia with work against racism. In 2012, she was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.

Aidan KeyAidan Key is the director of Gender Diversity, an organization that provides education to teachers, staff, counselors, and administrators regarding gender-inclusive schools grades K-12. Additionally, he provides support for families of transgender and gender-nonconforming children and teens through his support groups at Seattle Children’s Hospital. Key speaks regularly to universities and organizations seeking to expand their knowledge of issues related to gender identity in children and adults. Aidan Key is the founder and director of the Gender Odyssey and Gender Odyssey Family conferences.

Kim PearsonKim Pearson is one of the nation’s most experienced educators regarding gender diversity in children. Her success at bringing meaningful understanding to audiences is rooted in accurately identifying and speaking to the level of awareness unique to participants. Drawing from her personal journey as the mother of a transgender child, her professional connections with leading experts, and her vast experience as a transition facilitator, Kim empowers families, educators, and others by providing the tools for success.

Mike ColbreseMike Colbrese is the executive director of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.  He was named as the WIAA’s 4th executive director in the fall of 1993, after serving 6 years as the commissioner of the Wyoming High School Activities Association.  He also served as assistant to the executive secretary of the Montana High School Association for 5 years, taught high school English for 11 years, and worked as a high school and college football and basketball official for 15 years. When schools contacted WIAA to seek guidance on transgender student participation in sports and other activities, WIAA offered a well-intentioned but outdated proposal.  Mike and WIAA then sought and responded to community input and, in 2008, drafted a policy that has since served as a model for the nation.

The Road To Expert

Whether you are a doctor, therapist, educator, or other professional, there is no established pathway to become an “expert” on issues related to transgender care and/or experience. Existing educational courses, subjective written resources, and “current” research are inadequate to address the complexity of trans lives and the ever-increasing requests for knowledgeable care or support. In light of this, how does one begin? How did current experts gain their experience? How do you address this issue with patients, clients, students, or other peers in a responsible manner? Join us as we explore these questions, examine the current state of trans care, and learn how interested professionals might engage in this work.

Ryan SallansRyan K. Sallans, MA, is a public speaker, diversity trainer, consultant, and author specializing in healthcare and workplace issues surrounding the LGBTQIA community. For the past three years he has served as the lead subject-matter expert for Arms Risk Affiliate Management, Inc., in the development of e-learning courses for medical providers seeking CMEs in LGBTQ healthcare and cultural competency. He also works with organizations and universities on LGBTQ social issues, and media literacy related to eating disorders and body image. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in English and Anthropology, Master of Arts in English, and a Master of Arts in Educational Psychology.

Jennifer Hastings, MD, is a family practice doctor in Santa Cruz, CA, and the director of the transgender health care program at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte. Jen started the PPMM transgender health care program in 2005 and has been actively involved in transgender health care services for PPFA and Planned Parenthoods around the country. Jen is a member of the medical advisory board of the UCSF Center of Excellence for Transgender Health, on the steering committee for the UCSF Child and Adolescent Gender Center, and Medical Director of Conference Programming for Gender Spectrum. As a passionate advocate for queer and gender creative youth and adults, Jen works to increase medical access and understanding about the trans journey.

Tunnel Vision and “The Checklist”

Many parents and providers alike have wished for the how-to book for raising a transgender child. The lack of a definitive road map can lead adults to intently focus on what is tangible—a checklist of sorts—and assume these items are the most important destination stops of this journey. Examples include name changes, puberty delay, hormone intervention, ID document changes, future surgery and so on. This intent focus on the concrete tasks of gender transition can cause a parent or provider to develop a tunnel-vision of sorts.  This can sometimes obscure the less tangible but critical aspects of a trans or gender-nonconforming child’s life; prevent typical family functioning because of the ever-present “crisis”; miss the opportunities to provide a child with resiliency-building skills; and possibly confuse a child’s wish to express gender fluidity with the desire to transition their gender identity. Join us in this workshop where we will explore these issues in greater depth.

Aydin KennedyAydin Kennedy lives in Chico, CA. He holds an Advanced Generalist Practice MSW and has been working with the queer and trans* community since 1998. For the last 10 years he has provided trainings on privilege, heteronormativity, and heterosexism and their subsequent impact on gender and sexual minority people throughout Northern California. Aydin is the founder of Stonewall Alliance Center’s community counseling program where he provides clinical services to trans* adults, youth, and their families.

Susan LandonSusan P. Landon, MA, MFT, is the director of the Child and Adolescent Program at the Los Angeles Gender Center. She has worked with gender diverse children and their families for over 25 years. She provides a welcoming and supportive environment for children, adolescents, and their families to explore the many aspects of diverse gender expression and identity. She offers in-service trainings on gender diversity for parents, teachers, and school administrators.

The Medical Needs Of Transgender Youth: Cross Hormones

Transgender teens and their families often struggle to find appropriate, thorough, and sensitive health care services. Up-to-date, informed medical care can greatly increase the positive effects of a teen’s physical gender transition and their overall mental well-being. This workshop focuses primarily on medical intervention for transgender adolescent youth and will cover the use of cross-sex hormones in this population.

Dan MetzgerDaniel Metzger, MD, is a pediatric endocrinologist at British Columbia’s Children’s Hospital in Vancouver, Canada. He and his mental-health and adult-transgender colleagues work together as part of the BC Transgender Clinical Care Group, a provincial resource which oversees the medical, mental-health, and surgical care of transgender people in BC. Dr. Metzger and his nursing and social work colleagues have been seeing and treating transgender youth and young adults at BCCH for the past 13 years and are currently in the process of reviewing the first 91 patients that accessed care at the center.

Family Law: Parents In Conflict

Due to society’s difficulty with accepting transgender and gender-nonconforming people, having a transgender or gender-nonconforming child can lead to significant strain on the child’s parents and their relationship. That strain is only magnified when one parent is not supportive of the child’s gender identity. It is very important for providers to assist parents in resolving any differences amicably, as courts are ill-equipped to decide questions of access to hormone treatment, name change, and schooling for transgender and gender-nonconforming children. This workshop will review the difficulties these families face when parents turn to the courts to resolve these disputes, and the important role that experts play in educating the courts about the needs of these children. Moreover, participants will be provided with practical information about how to support their patients and clients through this process in the manner that will result in the least harm to the child(ren) involved.

Cathy SakimuraCathy Sakimura oversees NCLR’s family law work and helps supervise the work of the legal team. She also runs NCLR’s Family Protection Project, which improves access to services for low-income LGBT parents and their children, with a focus on increasing services to families of color. This project provides free legal information to low-income LGBT parents and their children; trains and supports attorneys providing free and low-cost services; and works in coalition with organizations serving communities of color to provide culturally competent services. Previously, Cathy worked at Gay-Straight Alliance Network, where she empowered young people to combat harassment in their schools and participated in a multi-organization project linking work against homophobia with work against racism. In 2012, she was named one of the Best LGBT Lawyers under 40 by the National LGBT Bar Association.

The Future Of Trans Youth Care

In 2011, the Institute of Medicine outlined a tremendous gap in the state of research for LGBTQ individuals and especially research related to transgender populations. The lack of evidence-based trials with respect to transgender youth leads to skepticism and hesitancy on the part of medical providers to offer appropriate and timely care. This workshop focuses on the strides that have been made in the area of research; preliminary results from my own research at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles; and the recommendations for moving transgender care forward through evidence-based, rigorous scientific trials.

Dr. Jo OlsonJohanna Olson, MD, is an adolescent medicine physician specializing in the care of transgender youth, gender-variant children, and youth with HIV. Board certified in pediatrics and adolescent medicine, Dr. Olson has been an assistant professor at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for the past five years. She has appeared several times on national television to educate audiences about the needs of transgender youth. Dr. Olson speaks around the country about the importance of providing quality mental health and medical care for gender-nonconforming children and adolescents.

Trans* Youth Speak

Join us for a panel discussion with trans* young people who will share their experiences, aspirations, and ideas for change. This session will include a screening of some short media by Reteaching Gender & Sexuality, a national media and education project based in Seattle.

Sid PetersonModerator: Sid Jordan Peterson has presented his media and education work with Reteaching Gender & Sexuality at festivals, conferences, and campuses worldwide. Sid has worked as an organizational trainer and consultant for human service agencies, campus groups and faculties, community groups, and centers of faith on issues of gender and sexual diversity.  He currently coordinates the LGBTQ Access Project in King County, a national anti-violence demonstration project working to improve access to services for survivors.

Injustice At Every Turn: Keynote Address                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Statistical Impact of Family Acceptance: The National Transgender Discrimination Survey

In 2011, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality published a groundbreaking report based on the first national survey research project focused on anti-trans discrimination.  With respondents in all 50 states, the findings revealed the first full 360-degree picture of anti-trans bias in the US and has since become required reading for all those working with and for trans and gender-nonconforming people.  Please join the authors of this report for a presentation of the findings spanning the domains of health, housing, education, employment, police and prisons, ID documents, and family life.

Jack Harrison-QuintanaJack Harrison-Quintana is a queer Chicano activist currently serving as the manager of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Policy Institute.  In 2011, he was part of the team of researchers who published the groundbreaking report Injustice at Every Turn: A Report of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, which revealed the first national picture of anti-trans discrimination in the US.  Jack’s other publications include Outing Age 2010: Policy Issues Affecting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Elders; A Gender Not Listed Here: Genderqueers, Gender Rebels, and OtherWise in the National Transgender Discrimination Survey; and a series of racial justice publications based on the survey data.

Ignacio RiveraIgnacio Rivera is a Queer, gender-shifting, Trans- Entity, Black Boricua, lecturer, activist, filmmaker, and performance artist. Ignacio has shared their poetry, spoken word, and storytelling for over 10 years.  As a lecturer/ trainer, Ignacio has spoken on such topics as racism, sexism, homo/transphobia, transgender issues, trans 101, sexual liberation, anti-oppression, anti-violence, multi-issue organizing, and more. Ignacio also consults with various LGBT and nonviolence organizations in New York City. Ignacio is one of the founding board members of Queers for Economic Justice, a progressive nonprofit organization committed to promoting economic justice in a context of sexual and gender liberation.