Meet the Staff: Ella

Welcome Ella to the DC Center! As the health and wellness intern, she looks forward to getting to know the center and the people it serves. You can meet Ella at the DC Center on weekdays and some evenings. She is looking forward to working with the peer support groups and learning more about the mental and physical healthcare needs of the LGBTQ+ community.

 

Birthdate, Astro Sign

January 5, 2000. I’m a capricorn sun and moon and a virgo rising!

 

Where are you originally from? 

I was born and raised in DC.

 

Why did you start working at the DC Center? 

I wanted the chance to learn more about working in mental health, and the Center’s work is so important! 

 

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

How kind and welcoming the staff is.

 

What is your music anthem? 

Space Cowboy by Kacey Musgraves

 

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 

My friends and my girlfriend!

 

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 

Rock creek park, I love to take walks there and listen to a good podcast or audiobook.

 

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Boy Erased– the book is also very powerful.

 

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

A nice olive green. Might put a few murals on the sides!

 

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
Experimental musician Pauline Oliveros. She was out and open in a time when that was very uncommon, and her music is incredibly powerful.

Meet the Staff: Jazmin

Welcome Jazmin back to the DC Center! Jazmin is in charge of coordinating much of the day to day activities here at the center. Without Jazmin at the office there is no way that The DC Center would be able to function as smoothly as it does.

Jazmin has experience working to better sexual health and status neutral services, along with improving access to Ryan White Services. Jazmin also dedicates herself to community building and outreach, especially among marginalized communities and communities of color; Jazmin focuses on outreach to trans persons, non binary individuals, along with gay and bisexual males. You can meet Jazmin at the DC Center on weekdays and some evenings. Jazmin is truly a gift, we are so grateful for her positivity and hard work!

 

Birthdate, Astro Sign

December 6, Sagittarius

 

Why did you start working at the DC Center? 

I started working at The DC Center because I wanted to make a difference and be a visible example to my community and the world that we all matter and have a place in the journey to equality and justice.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

My favorite moment has been watching the peer educators grow and blossom into full fledged activists.

What is your music anthem? 

Jennifer Holiday – Woman’s Got the Power

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 

My favorite part of the LGBTQ+ community is the compassion and creativity that we provide and share with each other and the world.  We have been through so much as a community but yet we love and live and support each other unconditionally.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 

My favorite spot in DC is the Tidal Basin, with all of it’s glorious monuments. I go there to think and dream, plotting out my own legacy one step at a time.

What is your favorite queer movie?  

To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar (1995)

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

I would paint the White House white, pink and blue for the trans flag. The colors aren’t too complicated and they mean so much to me and my community.

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

There is no doubt in my mind, Earlene Budd is my personal hero!  Knowing her and working with and for her down through the years has shaped my personal advocacy journey so much.  Her leadership, professionalism, boldness and compassion continues to inspire me  each day. Grace comes from experience and endurance,  and I can only hope to be so graceful as I grow as an advocate day by day.

 

Meet the Staff: Dan

Welcome Daniel to the DC Center! He will be joining us at the Support Desk. Daniel looks forward to meeting and working with members of the community. You can meet Daniel at the DC Center on weekdays and some evenings. Daniel is a psychology major at George Washington University with aspirations to go to graduate school and conduct research in LGBTQ+ health as a psychologist. Daniel is a certified yoga teacher and enjoys meeting local dogs and going on hikes.

 

Birthdate, Astro Sign

May 12th, Taurus

 

Where are you originally from? 

New Jersey

 

Why did you start working at the DC Center? 

I wanted to become more involved in the LGBTQ+ community.

 

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

I really enjoy being able to work with such kind people.

 

What is your music anthem? 

In My Mind by Amanda Palmer

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 

My favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community is the potential for inclusivity of such a diverse group of people.

 

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 

My favorite spot in DC is a spot on the National Mall (about 50 meters from the Washington Monument), smack-dab in the middle of the Washington Monument, The Lincoln Memorial, The White House, and The Jefferson Memorial – a great spot to have a picnic or do yoga!

 

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Mine Vaganti (Loose Cannons) is a great Italian romantic comedy.

 

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

I think the White House would look nice if the columns stayed white and the walls were painted teal.

 

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
I look up to Charles Silverstein, a queer psychologist who argued to remove homosexuality from the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM).

 

Meet the Staff: Christina

Welcome Christina Cappelletti to the DC Center! She is the new Therapist and Anti-violence Advocate. Christina looks forward to being here as a counselor, activist and artist in our community. You can meet her at the DC Center Monday through Friday. Christina has been a Queer change agent for over two decades, including several years in San Francisco/East Bay, California. She also lived in Colorado, where she started a gender counseling program at a public health clinic, as well as co-founding a queer-owned art gallery and community artists studio. Both as a therapist and an artist, she deeply appreciates creating space for the processes of personal growth and transformation for all identities.

Pronouns: She/Her/s and any that encompass Pangenderism

 

Birthdate, Astro Sign — November 15 — Scorpio Sun, Leo Moon, Libra Rising

 

Where are you originally from? Athens, Ohio, a lively liberal college town in the Appalachian foothills.

 

Why did you start working at the DC Center? To hold space for healing and to be part of a creative team in service of social justice.

 

What is your music anthem? Imagine, by John Lennon. It’s timeless.

 

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? The full spectrum of freedom of cultural identity expression based on love and infinite possibility, as a model of the capacity of the human soul.  And it’s just fun!

 

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? My home in Mount Rainier. Time with my Love and pups and for making art.

 

What is your favorite queer movie?  Yentl. Home for the Holidays. The Danish Girl. Brokeback Mountain. Lots of good ones out there, finally.

 

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  Murals! Depicting every imaginable cultural identity.

 

Who do you look up to in the queer community? Audre Lorde. Gloria Anzaldua. Elton John. Again, lots of good choices!

Meet the Staff: Ragya

Welcome Ragya to the DC Center! They will be joining the team as a fall intern. They currently attend the University of Texas at Dallas and are majoring in International political economy! They look forward to working at the DC Center and getting to know DC, as they have only recently moved here. You can meet Ragya at the DC Center Monday through Friday.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

June 8th, Gemini
Where are you originally from? 

Reno, NV! #homemeansnevada

Why did you start working at the DC Center? 

To do work that actually benefits the LGBT community and to meet more friendly faces.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

Getting to know the other people who work here! Such sweet individuals.

What is your music anthem? 

Monotony by Jozy. A small story of prioritizing yourself 🙂

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 

The feeling of understanding and kinship. You can reach out to people who might experience the world in similar ways to you.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 

I like to pack a meal and sit in the flowers at the arboretum. It’s very calm and warm.

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Moonlight, but I’m much more into music than movies and shows.

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

Maybe purple?

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

My best friend, Jada. They’ve taught me so much about love and understanding and I don’t know where I would be without them.

Meet the Staff: Taryn

Meet one of our Support Desk Volunteers, Taryn Kitchen! If you call or stop by the Center on a Monday, you’ll likely see them welcoming visitors and getting folks oriented to the DC Center’s programs. Taryn also keeps the website updated and coordinates some of the Center’s volunteer opportunities.

Birthdate, Astro Sign

July 24, which makes me a Leo

Where are you originally from?

I’m from a small town Massachusetts, known for its one traffic light installed in the 90s.

Why did you start working at the DC Center?

I have appreciated the many programs and resources at the DC Center since I moved here and have met many of my friends through the Center. I was excited to get more involved and have a chance to connect more with the LGBT community in DC.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

I really love talking to folks who are just starting to connect with queer communities and maybe visiting the Center for the first time.

What is your music anthem?

Oh man, this is tough… I’ve watched Tash Sultana’s Tiny Desk Concert approx 7382 times, so I think I’m gonna go with that…

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

The instant family you find everywhere. Whether its a DC Center support group, a queer movie night, or an Andrea Gibson show, you know where you can find people to instantly connect with.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

I love QT Fusion’s dance nights. The queer bachata nights are great to meet tons of people and fulfill my dance soul. 

What is your favorite queer movie?

Hmm I’m gonna go with Princess Cyd, for its quality queer coming of age narrative. Also, I know you didn’t ask, but I’m gonna plug my favorite queer book– Dante and Aristotle Discover the Secrets of the Universe– cause I’m a sucker for YA and it’s beautiful.

What clothing item is a staple in your wardrobe?

Funky patterned button-ups, particularly with birds and florals.

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?

I’d love to see it painted as a community mural by local students.

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

All the young trans and queer kids out there being proud and making change in their schools and communities

Meet the Staff: Alexis

Welcome, Alexis to the DC Center! She is a Social Media and Advocacy Intern for the Summer and is looking forward to meeting and supporting members of her community. You can meet Alexis at the DC Center on Tuesdays thru Fridays. She is a rising Junior at American University majoring in Justice and Law who likes to play Ultimate Frisbee in her spare time.

 

Birthdate, Astro Sign

April 21st, Taurus

 

Where are you originally from?

San Diego, CA

 

When did you start working at the DC Center?

June 5th

 

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

I love how passionate everyone is about their work and helping the community. You can feel the excitement for the events the minute you walk into the room!

 

What is your music anthem?

“Is There Life Out There” by Reba McEntire

 

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

I love it when the community comes together to show support for one another. There is so much love in this community, and it never ceases to make you feel welcomed.

 

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

I love going to the National Cathedral and walking around the gardens. If it’s too cold, I’ll be in Open City sipping on some Hot Coco! But on a beautiful day, I can be caught reading a book or throwing a frisbee with some friends on the lawn outside the Cathedral.

 

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Imagine Me & You (2005)

 

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

A teal blue – like the ocean!

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
Cleve Jones was the first activist I learned about, and his work with the Names Quilt brings me chills every time I think about it. I genuinely look up to his passion for the cause and hope I can emulate his passion in my own work.

Meet the Staff: Maya

woman with cherry blossoms

Welcome Maya to the DC Center! She is a summer health and wellness intern and looks forward to making members of the queer community smile and feel supported. You can meet Maya at the DC Center Monday thru Friday this summer! She is a rising junior at Georgetown University, majoring in Global Health. 

Birthdate, Astro Sign

23 May, Gemini

Where are you originally from?

San Diego, CA

Why did you start working at the DC Center?

I started working at the DC Center to further my exposure to community/queer health work and give back to the LGBTQ community.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?

My favorite part has been the welcoming attitudes of my coworkers. We’re all striving to help our community thrive!

What is your music anthem?

I’ve had Hippo Campus’ “Bambi” on repeat lately.

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?

I love how much fun we can have together. Whether it’s dancing, fashion, or poetry it all makes me feel fabulously free.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?

I absolutely love to run on the National Mall. You can catch me there with my partner and our dog!

What is your favorite queer movie?  

Moonlight (2016)

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  

Green!

Who do you look up to in the queer community?

Jennifer Wiggins is a queer black icon working in Georgetown’s Health Education Services. She is constantly making herself available for queer programming & has often made me smile as well as feel safe on campus. Simply put, Jenn is a loving activist through and through.

Meet the Staff: Alex

Welcome Alex to the DC Center! He is excited to join as the new Social Media and Advocacy intern. He looks forward to promoting the DC Center and increasing equity in our community. You can meet Alex at the DC Center on Tuesdays and Thursdays! He is a community organizer, artist, and Goucher College student with an Individualized Interdisciplinary Major called “Social Media for Social Change.”

Birthdate, Astro Sign
15 May, Taurus

Where are you originally from?
San Diego, California

Why did you start working at the DC Center?
I started working at the DC Center because their Trans Support Groups helped me get through some of my greatest challenges when I came out and moved to DC in 2016.

What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?
I love having the opportunity to help people, connect with the LGBTQ+ community, and collaborate with a fantastic team.

What is your music anthem?
Love Is Love by Alfie Arcuri

What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community?
The communal support and dedication to uplifting one another.

What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there?
I love walking in Rock Creek Park.

What is your favorite queer movie?  
The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson

What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  
Purple

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
Ellen Degeneres because she is authentic, hilarious, and wonderfully kind. Laverne Cox because she fights for our rights and shares vital, inspiring messages. All of my trans friends and mentors who have helped me get to where I am today.

Meet the Staff: Va

VA headshot

Welcome Virginia to the DC Center! She usually goes by Va. Va is excited to provide mental health services as a part-time social worker. She is excited to work here and hopes to continue to make the lives of LGBTQ people easier. You can meet Va at the DC Center in the evenings! Va is an Army Veteran, a Licensed Graduate Social Worker (LGSW), Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (ERYT), and an LGBTQ Advocate.

Birthdate, Astro Sign
4 March, Pisces
Where are you originally from? 
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Why did you start working at the DC Center? 
I started working at the DC Center because I believe everyone’s voice is important.
What has been your favorite part about working at the DC Center?
I love the community and my teammates that I work alongside. The vibe with the DC Center Staff reminds me much of family; wonky but we function.
What is your music anthem? 
Lloraras by Oscar D’Leon & My Favorite Things by John Coltrane
What is your favorite part about the LGBTQ+ community? 
The flavor, authenticity and community.
What is your favorite spot in DC and what do you do there? 
Bukom Cafe & Bossa Bistro. I love to dance salsa, merengue, bachata and afrobeats.
What is your favorite queer movie?  
Hands down “The Rocky Horror Picture Show!” I love the art, music and horror-comedy.
What color would you paint the White House, given the chance?  
White is fine #minimalism

Who do you look up to in the queer community?
I especially look up to transgender people of color as I feel they are stigmatized and treated the worst of the LGTBQ community. These beautiful people have the courage to be themselves and are met with immense difficulty. I admire their strength!