Skip Navigation
Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Home Page Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Home Page
Breaking Through the Transgender Ceiling 2014 Pride Observance

Trans* (with the asterisk): Trans* refers to a diverse group of individuals who cross or transgress culturally defined categories of gender. The term may be used interchangeably with transgender.


Trans* people are one of the most marginalized groups in the United States. According to reports from the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force 1 out of 5 members of the trans* community are homeless for a portion of their lives; 57% experience rejection from family members; 30% have a physical disability or mental health condition. Trans* men and women have double the rate of unemployment of the general population and half report experiences of work place discrimination. Trans* people represent four times the national average of HIV infections; and 41% have attempted suicide.

While statistics that identify trans* risk factors are well documented in research and are important data to consider in the emerging field of health research and advocacy that promote trans* life chances, equally important is research that examines trans* resiliency strategies and other factors that contribute to positive health outcomes. Despite being pathologized on the basis of their gender identity, identifying how trans* individuals navigate space and understanding the strategies that they deploy is critical to fostering a workplace and a research culture that is trans* affirming and trans* inclusive.

Beginning in June 2014, the NIH LGBTI Portfolio will commence a year-long series of seminars, trainings, brown bag lunches, and discussions aimed to increase accurate knowledge of trans* experience in health research, health services, and employment. The year-long theme, "Breaking through the Trans* Ceiling: A Community Response to Trans* Health and Well-Being," will immerse scientists and administrators, community advocates and activists, scholars, and the general public in a deep dive analysis of trans* research, trans* literature, and workplace policies.

Panel Discussion–– On Being Human: Reflections on Trans* Health and Well-Being

Co-sponsored by: LGBTI Portfolio and Salutaris: LGBT Employee Resource Group, Fellows and Friends
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
10:00 A.M. – 11:30 A.M.
Building 35 Porter
Room 640

The LGBTI Portfolio presents "On Being Human: Reflections on Trans* Health and Well-being," a 90-minute panel discussion that features trans* men and women across a variety of professions and perspectives. "On Being Human…" explores trans* identity through first-person narrative voice. The program brings together Dr. Scout, Director of the Network for LGBT Health Equity; Dr. JV Sapinoso, Assistant Director of the LGBTI Studies Program at University of Maryland College Park; Cecillia Chung, Strategist at Trans* Law Center; Ruby Corado, Executive Director of Casa Ruby; and Rayceen Pendarvis, author and columnist, to discuss the intersections of difference and the importance of understanding trans* issues through the prisms of health, health research, employment, and culture. Additionally, panelists will share personal stories and answer questions from the audience.

Training–– Trans* Sensitivity Awareness Training

Wednesday, June 18, 2014
1:00 P.M. – 3:00 P.M.
Building 10 Hatfield
Clinical Center 2-3330

Join us as we kick-off the Agency’s first ever Trans* Sensitivity Awareness Training. A 90-minute cultural sensitivity training, Trans* Sensitivity Awareness Training promotes awareness and education, and provides foundational knowledge on issues impacting the lives and experiences of trans* persons. The Training introduces participants to terminology, social identity theories and concepts, and policies and laws that protect the rights of trans* persons in the workplace as well as in society.

Register for Trans* Sensitivity Awareness Training. Please register early, space is limited.

A Conversation with Amanda Simpson

Thursday, June 26, 2014
10:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M.
Building 1 Wilson Hall

Come hear how one woman’s expert knowledge, administrative successes, and quiet fight for equality landed her a job working for the President of the United States of America.

Amanda Simpson, hailed as one of the nation’s first transgender political appointee, will culminate NIH’s 2014 Pride Month Celebration with a brown bag talk. Ms. Simpson will discuss career development and professional advancement, share stories about her life as a special assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Army, speak about her time at the Pentagon, offer insights about what it is like to be a trailblazer, and reveal why she loves public service.