Now Accepting Applications to Join TransOhio Board of Directors!
The ‘Join the TransOhio Board of Directors’ is an Ohio-statewide call for those who are interested in joining the TransOhio Board of Directors (also known as a Board Member). If you are interested in joining our board, please click here to read more about the board application process.
Melissa M. Alexander, Co- Chair Melissa has served on the TransOhio Board since 2009. She has been involved in the planning and/or speaking at every Symposium since it began in 2008. Her primary focus, before assuming the Co-Chair position, has been on development and planning of the annual symposium, speaking and presenting workshops for various groups and agencies and with the development of the organization’s non-profit status and the 501(c) (3) status. Ms. Alexander is employed as an Instructor teaching business law and employment law, ethics and professional development courses. Prior to her work as an Instructor, she was the owner and operator of small business where she worked as a meeting planner and she received her CMP designation in 2008 from the Convention Industry Council. Melissa also was a partner in a law firm where she practiced law for over twenty years with particular focus on employment law . She has a B.A degree cum laude in Political Science with a minor in Philosophy from Northern Kentucky University, a degree in Theology from the University of the South and her law degree from West Virginia University. Melissa is married to her partner Paula.
You can email Melissa at: melissa (at) transohio.org
James Knapp was born and raised in Northeastern Ohio, James has been a member of the TransOhio Board of Directors since 2013. A lifelong activist, James first got involved in trans* advocacy in 2002, when he spoke to the Akron Public School Board concerning its policy on gender-variant individuals, dress codes, and bullying. Since that time, he has been involved with a number of student, local, state, and national organizations. He continues to speak and educate others on the complex issues facing the LGBTQ communities, focusing on concerns specific to transgender and gender-variant individuals. He has spoken to students, teachers, guidance counselors, social workers, medical professionals, and attorneys, both at private training and conferences. James has a Bachelor of Arts in English and Philosophy from The University of Akron and a Juris Doctor from Cooley Law School.
You can email James at: James (at) transohio.org.
Arykah Carter is an activist is the Cincinnati community. She is a board member for TransOhio.org, a statewide advocacy and education group, and was instrumental in making TRANSSAINTS, a faith based trans organization an integral part of the Cincinnati Transgender Community. Arykah is currently working on organizing a Trans & Queer People of Color Collective (TQPCC) in Cincinnati. Arykah holds a B.S. from Western Michigan University, and an MBA from the Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University.
You can email Arykah at: Arykah (at) transohio.org.
Aran Reinhart is a bisexual Quaker transguy from rural Seneca County. He is a poet who often writes about being trans and has been published in Friends Journal. He is a facilitator for the Toledo Area Trans Support group (TATS) and is very active in Quaker & trans spaces. He wants to be a bridge to bring diverse people together and wants to reach out to LGBTQ folks in rural areas who may feel isolated.
You can email Aran at: Aran (at) transohio.org.
Brooke Testerman is originally from Oklahoma but has been a proud member of the Columbus community since 2008. She spends most of her free time laughing with her teenage son Ayden. She has a bachelors degree in Television Production and another in Theatre Direction and currently serves as Director of Customer Relations at a global Webhosting company. Brooke is an entertaining and engaging professional speaker, a project manager, an expert motivator, and a passionate advocate for all trans people.
You can email Brooke at: Brooke (at) transohio.org.
Michelle Moore lives in Hilliard, Ohio with her husband and four children. She is a registered nurse at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus. Michelle has been heavily involved in the community since 2014, from the time her oldest son came out to her at the age of 12. She is a Parent Mentor for the THRIVE Program at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, a program that focuses on the comprehensive care of transgender youth. She also runs a Facebook support group for parents of transgender children, “Ohio Parents of Transgender Children”. This group connects parents from all over Ohio to offer support, resources, advocacy, and advice for families and their children as they navigate through social transitions, medical interventions, issues with schools and more.
Michelle’s primary focus, as a member of the TransOhio Board, is to expand on youth involvement and activities within TransOhio and the community, to help advocate and educate in schools, to be a resource for youth and families, and to be an influential ally within the community.
You can email Michelle at: Michelle (at) transohio.org.
Ginger Marshall is an allied health instructor, teaching courses in phlebotomy, electrocardiography, and patient care. She speaks to groups about transgender issues, including educating caregivers about trans* patients. She is on the planning committee for the 2016 Transgender Job Fair sponsored by MetroHealth in Cleveland and she is a Patient and Family Advisor for the Office of Patient Experience at MetroHealth, where she is on the “Culture Competence in the Patient Experience Initiative” committee. With her partner, Carter, she co-leads the TransCleveland Support and Social Group. She has worked in healthcare since 2009, and was a U.S. Navy Hospital Corpsman many years ago. In between she worked in insurance and as a retail inventory auditor. A North East Ohio native, Ginger spent several decades in Atlanta before returning to Cleveland in 2011, where she has a deep love for the local food scene, the arts scene, the wonderfully kind, friendly people, and the change of seasons.
You can email Ginger at: Ginger (at) transohio.org.
James Glasser is a native Ohioan but lived for a decade in the Pacific Northwest. He returned to the Central Ohio area with his wife Aubrey in 2012 and has an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice. Since 2013 he has worked for a locally owned sign company as a Production Coordinator and lives in Reynoldsburg with Aubrey, two cats Ivan & Mister and a dog, Penny. James is new to nonprofit work but became inspired to commit to education and advocacy in light of the current hostile political and social climate regarding transgender and genderqueer individuals.
You can email James at: JamesG (at) transohio.org.
Ginger Williams is from Cleveland. She holds degrees in engineering from Youngstown State and Case Western Reserve Universities.
Ginger participated with other Trans* leaders from around the state at the Ohio Transgender Leadership Academy.
She has been involved locally in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, Equal Housing and Employment Act, Marriage Equality, and the City of Cleveland Non-Discrimination Ordinance changes. She has helped in planning activities for Cleveland’s TDOR and was a member of the planning team for the first Northeast Ohio transgender job fair in 2014. She is the recipient of the 2014 TDOR Illumination Award as transgender leader of the year.
Her passion is volunteerism for its associated sense of community, socialization and self-worth.
She volunteers with the following organizations:
Human Rights Campaign
You can email Ginger at: GingerW (at) transohio.org
Andrew Woolridge is one of the newest and youngest members of the Board of Directors for TransOhio. He currently attends Olentangy Orange High School and will be attending college this fall. He also serves on the Youth Leadership Council for Kaleidoscope Youth Center. Andrew is the founder and President of Gender Sexuality Alliance at his school where he lobbied for inclusion of sexual orientation, gender identity and express in the local school district’s policies and is a volunteer at OSU for teens and young adults with Autism and in grassroots campaigns in political arena.
You can email Andrew at: AndrewW (at) transohio.org
Wriply Marie Bennet is a painter and illustrator, born and raised in Ohio. She uses her art to uplift her sisters in the black lives/ black transgender lives movement. She works in ink, watercolor and other mediums, and her art comes from an untrained perspective. She never aspired to attend college to study art, and there are no degrees to speak of other than a high school diploma. Her art is proudly self-taught. Her organizing work started with the Trans Women of Color Coalition, and she has been an activist since Ferguson, where she was a freedom rider traveling to stand with the family and community of Mike Brown. Wriply’s work expresses the power, strength, and resilience that trans women of color have to persevere, and the grace and beauty of her culture. Her work uplifts the young black trans women we’ve lost and continue to lose every year, and sheds light on the fact that there has been no national outcry. Wriply’s art has been used in countless social justice flyers, and in November will be making its first film debut in MAJOR!, a documentary at the 2015 San Francisco Transgender Film Festival. Wriply is much more than a visual artist; she’s also a singer/song writer, actor, screenplay writer, story teller, cartoonist, and fashion designer. She continues to work and fight for justice! For art will travel.
You can email Ginger at: Wriply (at) transohio.org
Felicia M G DeRosa is an acclaimed, multidisciplinary artist with an eclectic background, and has been an Ohio resident since 2010. A veteran of the west coast “Low-brow” / “POP surrealism” movement, she quickly found a place with the underground art happenings of central Ohio where she continues her 30+ year span of domestic and international work.
After completing her MFA (studio art/art education) in 2014, Felicia established herself at the Columbus College of Art and Design, where she currently works as an instructor of anatomy, design, theory, and drawing fundamentals. Being openly and visibly trans, she has recently stepped into the role of advocate, fighting for inclusion and respect for the LGBTQAA++ students that she mentors, as well as reaching out to Columbus City Schools as a mentor, speaker and sensitivity advisor.
She lives with her wife Gwen — (since 2006), a hedgehog, a bird, and 2 ferrets in Westerville Ohio, and is quite fond of muscle cars, cartoons, and cheese puffs.
You can email Felicia at: Felicia (at) transohio.org
Shane Morgan, Founder, has been an Ohio resident for 13 years. He can often can be found facilitating transgender support groups in Central Ohio and speaking at conferences around the nation. Shane is a member of Equality Ohio and the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE).
Shane’s presented at The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s Creating Change Conference; Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio; Southern Comfort Conference; IDKE X; and other national and local conferences. He currently serves as a Steering Committee Member for Trans Advocacy Network (TAN). Shane has previously served as a Board Trustee at Stonewall Columbus, served as a Steering Committee member at the United Way of Central Ohio, a member of the Equality Ohio Public Policy Committee and as a Local Action Team leader.
In October 2010, Shane completed a Political Fellowship with the Center for Progressive Leadership. The Ohio Political Leaders Fellowship is a 9-month, part-time program that focuses on providing the long-term resources and skills necessary for emerging leaders to become powerful political advocates for their communities. Through training, coaching, project-based work and mentoring, the program gives up-and-coming leaders the skills and networks they need to advance progressive political change in their communities.
Shane presents on several topics: Inclusive policies in the Workplace; Sex-Segregated Spaces; Trans Homelessness & Shelters; Ally & Coalition Building; Trans & Queer Community organizing; Female-to-male transition; Domestic Violence & Safety; Coming Out at Work; Creating gender-safe & neutral spaces and Sex and sexuality.