I am an experienced writer and public speaker currently obtaining my Master of Public Administration at American University. I am an occasional blogger for the Raspberry Mousse website and have also written for the Family Tree LGBT Community Newspaper in Tallahassee, Florida. Much as lesbians, gays, and transgender people have worked hard to educate the LGBT community and the wider public about their issues and concerns, I strongly believe that bisexual people must also step up to the plate and do so as well. I am interested in speaking to organizations and gatherings of all sorts about bisexual issues, LGBT history, rural issues, political issues, youth issues, and issues pertinent to women.
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Delan Ellington (He/They) is a passionate fighter for Black Queer liberation in all forms. He recently graduated Magna Cum Laude from Howard University earning an M.A. in Public History with a thesis entitled “For Us, Serving Us, By Us: Prioritizing Black Queer Historical Spaces” based on research he’s collected leading the Rainbow History Project’s (RHP) ClubHouse Oral History Project. The Black Queer DC community now considers him one of the experts in the community’s history and the study of historical Black Queer Spaces. He’s the world’s foremost expert in The ClubHouse, a Black queer after hours disco that introduced House music to the DMV, was the center of the Black queer community between 1975 and 1990, and whose signature event is the precursor to DC’s Black Pride (the oldest and longest continuously running Black pride in the world) and the reason why it is held Memorial Day weekend.
Delan is featured in the 2022 documentary “Fierceness Serve! ENIK Alley Coffeehouse” A black queer short form documentary that world premiered at the 2022 DC International Film Festival. The CoffeeHouse is the location where the first generation of openly gay African American artists, writers, poets, and filmmakers congregated and performed. He was featured in Washington City Paper’s 2021 People’s Edition where they profile around twenty DC residents doing amazing, interesting, or important work in and around the DMV. Furthermore, he had the honor of being the youngest featured speaker at TEDx Foggy Bottom 2022, where he spoke on the importance of prioritizing Black queer historical spaces and publicly laying out a plan to begin to begin memorializing and stewarding them.
Throughout his 11-year fight for social equality and justice he’s been a member of many Black Queer Feminist organizations. Currently, he organizes with Harriet’s Wildest Dreams, a Black Femme & Queer led abolitionist organization. During their 2021 Boycott Nellies block Parties, He was a central and consistent Presence. He has worked with BYP 100’s DC Chapter and served as chair of the board for No Justice No Pride’s 501c 3 application after organizing with them for several years. He helped lead the 2015 University of Missouri student protests that resulted in the ouster for the System president and the University’s Chancellor. For his work building and maintaining the racial, sexual, and generational coalitions that achieved their goals Delan was featured in Spike Lee’s Two Fists Up ESPN documentary, awarded the 2016 Chancellor’s Inclusive Excellence Award and Mizzou 39 distinction where 39 members of the graduating class were recognized for academics, leadership, sports, volunteerism, and/or impact on the campus community.
He has served a two-year term on RHP’s board of directors where he co-chaired the programs committee created and the Black Queer History Committee. Currently, he is in the process of initiating the Memorialization Committee where he aims to lead the group successfully applying for historical queer spaces in DC to be recognized on the DC and National Register of Historic Places.
He’s considered an innovative GNC trailblazer professionally and aesthetically. Delan’s bold looks have been featured in the Blade and Metro Weekly. In the international Gay Rugby community, he’s known as the person with the audacity to wear a full face of make-up during matches as to showcase the expansiveness of GNC identities and expressions.
Delan has over a decade of public speaking and presenting experience, which has enabled him to be comfortable holding the attention and interacting with any audience. These qualities are important, as they allow connections to be made and growth to be shared, and learning to occur. It’s important for him to give back to the community and spread knowledge about important events in queer history, especially those that center Black people and other intersectionally marginalized communities within the queer population.
Topics he can speak and present on include Black Queer Feminism, Black Queer History, Queer History, Black Queer Spaces, DC Queer History, History of Black queer organizations, Black queer luminaries, nationally recognized historic queer spaces, inclusion in organizations, mental health in the queer community (from personal experiences), and History of Dance music and how Black and queer people were central in its creation and longevity.
IG @ decultured84 https://instagram.com/decultured84?igshid=MWI4MTIyMDE=
Vincent (he/him) is director of archiving for the Rainbow History Project, which collects, preserves, and promotes an active knowledge of the history, arts, and culture relevant to sexually diverse communities in metropolitan Washington DC. He speaks to the history of metropolitan Washington’s LGBTQ communities, and also RHP’s archival collections, how to donate materials to the archives, and options for online research and onsite access to materials stored at the DC History Center.
A Veteran who transition while on active duty, a Friend of our communities, and Advocate for LGBT+ Rights.
Mia Mason has successfully served for twenty years with the United States Navy, the United States Army, and the District of Columbia National Guard.
Throughout her career, she has served onboard USS Kitty-Hawk CV-63 for Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom for three tours of duty. She also served onboard USS Bataan LHD-5 for aid in efforts of Hurricane Katrina. Her previous units included AIMD Oceana and Mid Atlantic Regional Maintenance Center (MARMC) Calibration Center. Her daily skills of responsibilities included testing, troubleshooting, 3M repair, calibration and preventive maintenance for Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) equipment that is used with any aircraft to include the Consolidated Automated Support Systems (CASS) variants. Overall, she completed three years of oversea duty and sea duty. Her efforts awarded her the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (NAM), Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Arrowhead Device and Humanitarian Medal for her efforts.
Thus, with her broad skill set, she quickly adopted various technical expert jobs within the Army as Company Intelligence Analyst for counterinsurgency or counterinsurgency (COIN) Operations. Therefore, during mid-deployment, she focused her role toward Fire Command Controls to assist in aid of countering any Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) Emplacements with Area of Operations. With this success, she became employed as the Battalion Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO/EW) to provide Joint Tactical Operations Command training, Expert Infantry Badge (EIB) Training, and EW protection to counter against Remote Controlled Improvised Explosive Devices (RCIEDs). During her two deployments to Afghanistan, SGT Mason received the Combat Infantryman Badge (CIB), several Army Achievement Medals and Army Commendations, while protecting and aiding Commands with Afghan-partnerships against any IED threats.
Upon return home from deployment and discharge, she became a Contractor for the United States Coast Guard. There she served as Item Manager and Equipment Specialist to oversee and manage any C4ISR equipment to include induction, replacement, procurement, and budgeting for Long Range Enforcers.
SGT Mason joined the District of Columbia National Guard in 2013 and served as Calibration Technician with the 104th Maintenance Company before she transferred to the 352nd JAG Team Support and later to the National Guard Bureau, Legal Support Office to head up international operations.
Mia has previously run for Public Office in Maryland and supports Women rights, Poly-relationships, and anyone with disabilities.
Alexandra is a Policy Advocate at Protect Democracy, where she leads the National Election Advocacy Team and coordinates the activities of the National Task Force on Election Crises, a cross-ideological group of over 50 civil society leaders who worked to ensure free and fair elections in 2020 and 2022, and now seek to prevent election crises in 2024 and beyond. Previously, Alexandra was a career national security professional for 13 years. Inspired by living in NYC as a law student through the 9/11 attacks, Alexandra started her career as an intelligence analyst in 2004. In 2006 she was the first employee ever to complete a gender transition while working at the Office of Naval Intelligence. She ultimately led the Intelligence Community analytic effort to disrupt the proliferation of WMD by sea, and supported many successful U.S. policy initiatives while working at ONI and at the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence. After leaving government in 2017, Alexandra was the first openly transgender candidate to run for Congress from Massachusetts.
Alexandra enjoys providing her perspective on leadership and communication as a transgender woman, mentoring younger LGBT and national security audiences, and discussing the stakes of the U.S. and global effort against authoritarianism. She has presented on leadership, career development, LGBT and transgender issues for private corporate clients as well as the Out and Equal Executive Leadership Forum, Leadership Summit For Women in National Security, the Rainbow Families conference, Columbia University SIPA, Rutgers University, Yale University, and Capital Trans Pride.
Alexandra is a board member of GLBTQ Advocates and Defenders (GLAD), a member of the Truman National Security Project Defense Council, and previously served on the board of Whitman Walker Health and the Steering Committee of the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition. Alexandra was named by Out in National Security and New America as an Out Leader in 2021, and her writings have been published in the Washington Post, The Hill, the Yale Journal of International Affairs, and the Boston Globe. Alexandra is a graduate of Brown University with an A.B. inInternational Relations, and received her law degree from Brooklyn Law School.
Dana Beyer, M.D., a retired eye surgeon, is a well-known advocate for health issues as well as gender rights. She practiced medicine and surgery in D.C., Miami, Mississippi, Africa and Asia. She is currently a candidate for Maryland State Delegate, having first run in 2006. She is Vice President of Equality Maryland, former Executive Vice President of Maryland NOW, founding member of the Progressive Working Group, Maryland?s newest progressive alliance, member of the Board of Governors of the Human Rights Campaign, and board member of Mobile Med. She recently co-authored The Dallas Principles. She is currently on leave as Senior Adviser to Councilmember Duchy Trachtenberg of the Montgomery County Council, to run her campaign. She lives with her two sons in Chevy Chase.
Marke Meinke is founder and chair of Rainbow History Project, which works to collect, preserve, and promote an active knowledge of the history, arts, and culture relevant to sexually diverse communities in metropolitan Washington DC. Mark Meinke speaks to the history, issues, and evolution of metropolitan Washington’s LGBTQ community.
Dr. Chloe Schwenke is a Quaker human rights activist, development practitioner and academic with over three decades of international experience, nearly half of it while living in developing countries. She has worked in a senior capacity with some of the leading American development organizations, and as an independent consultant, on projects of USAID, the US State Department, the World Bank, and the Inter-American Development Bank. Her scholarly interests include human rights and human dignity, LGBTI issues, gender equality & female empowerment, and leadership ethics.
Chloe is also openly transsexual, and works closely with transgender activists around the world. She currently is a member of the adjunct faculty at the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University, and also undertakes a variety of consulting assignments in international development and human rights. In prior employment, she served as vice president for global programs at Freedom House in Washington, D.C. and earlier still as a political appointee for the Obama Administration at the US Agency for International Development (USAID). Chloe received her Ph.D. in public policy at the School of Public Policy at the University of Maryland at College Park, where she was chosen as Alumnus of the Year for 2013. She was also a recipient of theNational Center for Transgender Equality?s National Public Service Award in 2013. She is the parent of two children.
Brian Watson resides and works in Washington, D.C.’s Deanwood section of Ward 7. Since relocating to D.C. Brian has been a vocal and visible activist in the areas of social justice, youth, LGBT issues, and HIV/AIDS for nearly a decade. Brian is former Secretary and President of the D.C. Coalition of Black Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Men and Women, the oldest Black GLBT group in the United States. Brian presently serves as Director of Programs at Transgender Health Empowerment, Inc in Washington, D.C. where has been employed for the last 6 years. In September 2008 he started the Wanda Alston House the 1st and only GLBTQ youth homeless transitional program in the DC, MD, VA area. He has worked with various target populations on various topics such including religion, sexual minority youth, HIV positive individuals, foster children, recently incarcerated, substance abuse users, transgenders and transgender youth. Brian has been a trainer educating homeless programs, police officers, foster care agencies, and department of corrections on working with GLBT individuals and cultural competency. He has experience working in health education, HIV and HEP C counseling, testing and referral, case management, cancer in African Americans, housing coordination, and conducting formative research. Brian was appointed by Mayor Anthony Williams and Mayor Adrian Fenty to sit on boards such as the Regional Health Services HIV/AIDS Planning Council, LGBT Executive Advisory Board, and by Mayor Vincent Gray to sit on the Interagency Council on Homelessness. He is also a member of the DC HIV Planning Group and Metropolitan DC Police Critical Incidents Team. Brian is frequently called on to travel across the United States to speak on HIV/AIDS in youth, the African American GLBT community, and the black church. Brian was named a Capital Pride Hero in 2007, and received a Distinguished Service Award from GLAA in 2008 as well as American Red Cross volunteer of the year award. Has been featured in such publications as the Metro Weekly, Washington Blade, Black Pride Guide, Washington Post, and GayAgenda.com. He has appeared on the Kojo Nnamdi Show, WPFW?s ?Inside Out? radio show, Fox 5 Morning News and In the Life. He is also a contributing writer for SWERV Magazine.
Jackie DeCarlo has lived in the DC area for almost 20 years. Her volunteer activities have revolved around her faith community at the Friends Meeting (Quaker) of Washington and professionally she has been a leader and manager of nonprofit programs focused on economic justice. A frequent public speaker and published author, Jackie is interested in helping build awareness and understanding between faith-based and other groups committed to pursuing American values of freedom, respect for difference, and equality.