100 Transgender Americans You Should Definitely Know

Last night, 100 transgender Americans were honored for their contributions, advocacy, and activism at the annual Trans 100 Live Event. The Trans 100 Live Event was produced and hosted by trans advocate and artist Angelica Ross, and sponsored by Chicago House, Lambda Legal, and GLAAD.

Some of the transgender Americans honored include well known media personality and model Carmen Carrera, director Lana Wachowski, writer Parker Marie Molloy, musician Laura Jane Grace, athlete Kye Allums, CeCeMcDonald and other artists, organisers, and activists.

Asher Kolieboi, 2014 Co-Director of the Trans 100, discussed the way the list was decided:

It was an honor to work with our incredibly bright and passionate curators as we collectively learned about and debated an astonishingly diverse collection of transgender and gender-non conforming leaders working to create change in their community through arts, education, and advocacy.

Sponsors of the event, such as GLAAD, point out transgender media coverage of trans issues is usually presented in a negative light and say that the event is supposed to "shift the coverage" of trans lives:

The Trans 100 intends to shift the coverage of trans issues by focusing on the positive work being accomplished, and providing visibility to those typically underrepresented.

The live event for the second annual Trans 100 list took place at Mayne Stage in Chicago and streamed live online. According to organisers, the event was placed "on the eve of the International Transgender Day of Visibility, a day which aims to bring attention to the accomplishments of transgender people around the world."

Guest speakers at the Trans 100 event included Laverne Cox, listed on the Trans 100 the previous year and of Orange Is the New Black fame, and Kye Allums, founder of Project I Am Enough. Musical performances included rapper Kaycee Ortiz and singer Eli Krell. Addressing the highlighted speakers and performers, director of the Trans 100 Jen Richards outlined this year's event:

With this second iteration of the Trans 100 and Live Event, as well as our commitment to featuring an entirely new class of honorees, we had one simple goal: to demonstrate, publicly and unequivocally, that we have only begun to glimpse the talent, dedication, and spirit represented by our transgender colleagues, neighbors, friends, and family.

The full Trans 100 list with photos and biographies of those honored will be released as a PDF tomorrow at the Trans 100 website.

Image via Stina Marshall Parr. Used with permission.