VIRTUAL PROGRAM | Real Talk Series | Transgender & Non-Binary: Family, Parenting + Youth
Join Central Exchange for this four-part series exploring the experiences of trans and non-binary individuals. We are creating a safe space for open dialogue and discussion. You will hear from trans and non-binary individuals and advocates on four topics: Cultural Competency, Workplace, Family, Youth, and Parenting, and Sports. Come ready to listen, learn, and grow. Together, we can reduce stigma and create a safer, more compassionate, and equitable world.
Family, Youth + Parenting
Fact check: Did you know youth who identify as LGBTQ are nearly three times more likely to attempt suicide or self-harm (Trevor Project)? Nine in 10 trans young people have thought about committing suicide (Youth Chances, 2014). Come join these parents, youth, and mental health professionals understand how to create understanding and safer, more accepting schools, youth groups, etc.
Do you have a question for the panelists? SUBMIT HERE.
Nathan Bennett was born in Redmond, WA and grew up in a traditional Christian household and community. They studied psychology and global development at a private Christian liberal arts university in Seattle, Washington. Nathan led the LGBTQ+ organization on campus, served as the vice president of finance for the university's student association, and advocated for reform in the university's discriminatory hiring policies. They currently reside in Brooklyn, NY and work in the vintage retail industry. Nathan intends to continue their education in social psychology and education.
Kris was raised in oxymoronic Liberal, Kansas. After earning her Elementary Education degree at KU, she moved to Seattle, WA where she taught until baby #3, Nathan, was born. She then turned her attention to being a full-time mom and volunteer, much of which was centered around her Christian faith. As Nathan grew and came to understand and embrace their sexuality and gender, the family also changed for the better. Kris’ understanding grew for the harm that can be done within the church toward the LGBTQ+ community. Low-conflict Kris unexpectedly became passionate about instigating conversations within the church and elsewhere in hopes of bringing much needed understanding, compassion, and change. Learning the statistics on what can happen to people who are not accepted by their parents, Kris started volunteering at New Horizons homeless shelter where a disproportionate number of LGBTQ+ young adults needing love an acceptance can be found.
Noa is a 25-year old woman of transgender experience who has been living her true self for the last 10 years. From 18 months old she was drawn to “girlie” and feminine things playing with Barbies and dressing up. It became harder and harder to take the dress up clothes off. In 2005 she appeared in the HBO documentary “Middle Sexes: Redefining He and She”. At 14 she began to present as female. At 15 she started hormone blockers and at 17 she put on her first estrogen patch. Noa has always had the support of those around her (for the most part) and is so grateful and lucky to not have a tragic trans experience which is all too common for people in this community. She was under the care of Children’s Mercy Hospital and is currently seen by physicians at KU Medical.
In 2015 she ran for homecoming queen in high school and although she did not win, was the first openly trans woman to make the top three in that competition. Also, in 2015 she became the first trans woman to win Best Actress in Missouri through MSSHA competition, as well as becoming the first trans woman to win a Blue Star Award at Starlight Theater in that KC/Suburban-wide competition. Noa put theatre on the back burner to pursue an education in health care. This has given her the opportunity to work an internship in the Transgender Clinic at KU which was an eye opening and incredibly rewarding experience. She is now working as a phlebotomist in the KU cancer center. Noa has hopes to return to the stage some day soon. Overall, she has been incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by family, medical professionals, the school system, many friends and her community at large over many years and desires to pay forward that support to others.
Michelle is Noa’s mom. She has always given 100% support to Noa and her journey and is her best advocate. She made it a point long ago to be careful to follow Noa’s lead in all things, and attempted to be one step ahead of the game in paving the way for her to be successful. She also appeared in the HBO documentary “Middle Sexes: Redefining He and She” in 2005. Michelle has been a constant ally to the LGBTQ+ community. She is passionate about helping any and all who feel “outside the box”, and is eager to help other parents navigate their family’s own transgender journey. Michelle is a breast cancer survivor. She lives with an incurable illness as a result of cancer treatment; Michelle strives to maintain her health to be by Noa’s side on her continued journey. She has had tremendous support from others over the years, but is especially grateful for the support of Noa’s dad and big brother. They too have always loved, accepted and cheered on Noa to be her best self. Michelle considers her children her very best effort to add goodness to the world.
Hannah identifies as gay woman, is the wife of a veteran, and a parent. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Social Work from Louisiana State University and has degrees in Cultural Anthropology along with Human Development and Family Science from the University of Georgia. Hannah is passionate about the LGBTQ+ community, especially LGBTQ+ youth and families. She has created and facilitated psychosocial groups for LGBTQ+ teens, parent support groups from LGBTQ+ youth, and staff trainings about the LGBTQ+ community at Johnson County Mental Health as a Children’s Case Manager.
Moon Glasgow's bio and headshot coming soon!
April 13 | Cultural Competency
How can you be a better employer? What are your roles and responsibilities as an employee? This panel is geared toward all; there will be specific conversations geared towards C-level execs, attorneys, HR professionals, and others who have a vested interest in making their workplaces more accommodating but do not know where to start.
In today's climate, there are many conversations around trans and non-binary people in sports. What is fact and what is fiction? What information do I need to understand and to be a meaningful part of this conversation? All are welcome for this open conversation with experts around sports and trans people.