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This conversation engages questions about how a city – and the institutions within it – creates community histories, and how memories affect personal and collective identities. The discussion is presented in conjunction with the exhibition MOTHA and Chris E. Vargas present: Trans Hirstory in 99 Objects.
This panel discussion is moderated by Chris E. Vargas and includes Marsha Botzer, Luzviminda Uzuri Carpenter, Aleksa Manila, and members of the Lion’s Main Art Collective.
Aleksa Manila first appeared in 1998 on All Hollow’s Eve as “Alexis.” Since then she has been crowned Miss Gay Filipino (2001), La Femme Magnifique of Puget Sound (2002), and in 2003 the 40th Miss Gay Seattle, believed to be the oldest drag title west of the Mississippi, if not the world! In 2006, Aleksa was elected and crowned Olympia XXXV- The Empress of Seattle, one of the oldest and respected drag titles in the Seattle LGBT community. From local bars to amphitheaters, lip syncing to live singing, solos to productions, Aleksa Manila has traveled as an outspoken advocate, performance artist and community leader across North America. When not in face, ‘he’ educates the community and counsels clients about the harms of crystal methamphetamine with Project NEON, a program of Seattle Counseling Service. For over 10 years, he has been Program Coordinator and Addictions Services Program Supervisor at SCS.
Luzviminda Uzuri Carpenter has been working at the intersections of communities for the past 20 years. Lulu, a Queer Mixed Race AfroPinxy, is an artist, educator, consultant, cultural worker, producer, community organizer, youth worker, and community strategist who lives and works in Seattle, WA. Currently, she works as a Performance Studies teacher and Resident Artist at Seattle Girls School; as the Youth & Young Adult Program Coordinator & Anti-Oppression Consultant at Hollow Earth Radio as well as a Radio Host of #LuluNation + Crew every Tuesday from 7-9pm discussing community issues from an LGBTQ of Color lens. She has shown her commitment and love towards Duwamish territory (where Seattle resides) through local space-making projects that develop art and artists locally and nationally focused on marginalized communities, voices, images, anti-violence, and visibility with Uzuri* Consulting & Productions. You can find Lulu on social media as @LuluNation206 or #LuluNation.
Calvin Gimpelevich is a trans writer and founding member of the Lion’s Main Art Collective for Queer and Trans Artists. His work has appeared in Glitterwolf, Cream City, The Collection, and Plentitude. His short story collection is forthcoming from Topside Press.
Marsha Botzer has served the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and progressive communities for over 40 years, as a founding member of Equality Washington, and on boards of Pride Foundation, Safe Schools, Lambert House, Seattle Counseling Service and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health. A founding member of Equal Rights Washington, a past co-chair of Seattle’s LBGT Commission, Marsha served as co-chair of The National LGBTQ Task Force in 2005-6, 2009-10, and as Chair of the Action Fund in 2015. She is a founding member of Out In Front Leadership Project, founded Seattle’s internationally known Ingersoll Gender Center, and served as a national co-chair of the 2008 Obama Pride Campaign. In 2013 she was selected for the Inaugural U.S. Edition of the Trans 100 List. In 2015 Marsha was elected to the Martin Luther King County Labor Council. Also in 2015 she received the Distinguished Scholar Award from Antioch University in Seattle and the Backbone Award from the National Secular Students Alliance.