Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2022-06-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Trans leader Reyna Ortiz on new book, being prom queen
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times
2017-11-01

This article shared 1929 times since Wed Nov 1, 2017
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Trans Latinx activist and advocate Reyna Ortiz's upcoming book, "T: Stands for Truth," will be released Nov. 7.

"It is about my life and experiences as a trans Latina living in Chicago," said Ortiz. "From sex work to social work, telling my story is obviously really personal. But, I wanted it to be truthful. So many trans women are living a very similar lifestyle and it is necessary to shine a light on these issues. Trans women need to break free from the perception of what society expects from us. Why can't trans woman of color strive for better, for success?"

This is not the first time Ortiz has told her story. She was also featured on StoryCorps ( www.wbez.org/shows/wbez-news/transgender-teenager-named-prom-queen/2802b91e-f552-4fdc-8c31-09c35ad6b25d ).

"StoryCorps was a great experience," said Ortiz. "I really started to understand how impactful my story can be with regards to educating society about the trans experience."

Ortiz was born in the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago and has three brothers ( older brother John and younger brothers Israel and Rafael ).

"I went to public schools mostly in Cicero, Illinois," said Ortiz. "My freshman year at Morton East High School was probably the hardest to endure. I believe I was the first person at the school to introduce them to what 'gender fluidity' means. I was determined to have a high school experience the way I felt I deserved.

"Of course, there was a small percentage of my high school that were very uncomfortable with me. Initially, I had to fight my way through the halls and early on my older brother John had to step in. He showed the school that I was protected, that I had a support system, that was not going to allow people to bully or intimate me. After that incident my high school experience became pretty normal. I really had a great time in high school, very minimal instances of discrimination."

Ortiz ( who self-identified as a two-spirit, androgynous, genderfluid youth at the time ) was named prom queen in 1998 and calls that night a pivotal moment in her life. She said this was the moment she achieved respect from her peers by winning the highest honor of femininity.

In addition to being an author, Ortiz is the trans resource navigator for TaskForce Prevention and Community Services ( the only LGBT organization in the heart of the West Side of Chicago ) where her primary roles are as health educator, HIV counselor and drop-in coordinator.

"Taskforce, or what the youth call 'The Vogue School,' is one of my most favorite places to be," said Ortiz. "We provide a safe space for African-American and Latinx LGBTQ youth. It is a phenomenal place where youth can express themselves without judgment or ridicule. We offer various resources and referrals that can benefit our youth—housing, medical, legal, PrEP and most importantly support and guidance."

Ortiz is also the TransSafe coordinator for Chicago House, where she connects trans-identified people to resources involving housing, legal, medical and employment opportunities.

She also founded, alongside GiGi Boom and Monica Fernandez, Trans Women in Real Life ( T.W.I.R.L ) to build community and pride as well as educate and empower trans indentified women.

Ortiz's message to allies put their words into action to help trans and gender nonconforming people get ahead. This includes learning about trans people and issues, hiring them and standing up to people who say anti-trans slurs or other comments.

"At this time in my life, simplicity is important to me," said Ortiz. "I love to cook, write and work. My work is a huge part of my life. I never would have thought that working for my trans community would bring me so much fulfillment, peace and happiness."

In Ortiz's message to fellow trans and gender nonconforming people, she invoked Channyn Lynne Parker's quote "It is a good day to be trans," adding, "Trans women are taking more pride in our community. We are striving for success, entrepreneurship and leadership roles so we can prosper. Keep living and pushing yourself but also enjoy the moment. Sometimes we get all wrapped up in the bureaucracy of gender that we forget what it is all about. Live, laugh, use condoms and take your hormones."

Vives Q will be hosting a free event to celebrate Ortiz's book release Tuesday, Nov. 7 at the National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th St., 6-9 p.m.

The event will include a talk by Ortiz; a panel featuring people in her book; and performances by entertainers Gaby Bady, Fatima Galindo and Lila Star. Also, Ortiz's book will be available for purchase.

To register for the event, visit www.eventbrite.com/e/vives-q-presents-t-stands-for-truth-book-release-celebration-tickets-37979278043 .


This article shared 1929 times since Wed Nov 1, 2017
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

StoryStudio Chicago's LGBTQ+ nonfiction writing class starting Aug. 17
2022-08-11
StoryStudio Chicago is offering a unique writing class titled "June Is Not Enough: An LGBTQ+ Nonfiction Writing Class." The idea behind the class is to promote and foster the work of LGBTQ+ people. Writers who register ...


Gay News

Journalist Chuck Colbert passes away at 67
2022-08-08
Journalist Charles "Chuck" R. Colbert—who had written for several LGBTQ+ publications, including Windy City Times—passed away June 30. He was 67. He was a freelance journalist based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, according to his biography on ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Okla. schools, Tenn. lawsuit, political items, Mich. library
2022-08-07
Video below - Oklahoma public schools have started requiring students from kindergarten to college to complete "biological sex affidavits" if they want to compete in school sports, in accordance with a state law that took effect earlier this year, ...


Gay News

BOOKS Inside Sinkhole, a darkly comic coming-of-age fiction
2022-08-06
Davida G. Breier's debut book, Sinkhole, takes readers on a trip to rural Florida in the 1980s. Amidst golf courses, mobile homes and alligators, some things on the agenda: friendship, identity, sexuality, grief and murder. Breier ...


Gay News

Angelica Ross to be first trans lead in Broadway's 'Chicago'
2022-08-04
Trans actors have made all sorts of impressions on Broadway, but former Chicagoan Angelica Ross has set a precedent. Next month, the leading role of fame-hungry murderess Roxie Hart will be played by Angelica Ross. Ross ...


Gay News

Judge: W. Va.'s Medicaid program must cover transgender care
2022-08-04
In West Virginia, U.S. District Judge Chuck Chambers ruled that the state's Medicaid program must provide coverage for gender-confirming care for transgender residents, ABC News reported. Chambers made the ruling on Aug. 2 in a lawsuit ...


Gay News

Attorneys general file brief in Indiana trans case
2022-08-04
A coalition of 22 attorneys general, including Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul and New York counterpart Letitia James, filed an amicus brief in the case of A.C. v. Metropolitan School District of Martinsville opposing the school ...


Gay News

HRC commends White House Monkeypox (MPV) Coordinator appointments; calls for greater federal response
2022-08-02
-- From a press release - WASHINGTON - Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, commended the Biden Administration for appointing Robert Fenton and ...


Gay News

Utah school district removes LGBTQ+ books from libraries
2022-08-02
A Utah school district removed 52 books from its library shelves due to parent complaints mainly concerning LGBTQ+-focused material, LGBTQ Nation noted. A spokesperson for Alpine School District tells The Salt Lake Tribune that the district ...


Gay News

Brave Space Alliance plans to raise salaries, urges partner agencies to follow suit
2022-08-01
-- From a press release - CHICAGO — Aug.1, 2022 — Brave Space Alliance, the South Side LGBTQ+ Center, announced a sweeping new plan to increase the organization's base salary to $43,000 for entry-level staff, equivalent to an hourly wage of $20.67/hr. ...


Gay News

Vallas speaks at event of group known for anti-LGBTQ+ views [UPDATE]
2022-08-01
Former Chicago Public Schools CEO and current mayoral candidate Paul Vallas spoke at a fundraiser for Awake Illinois—a group that has been criticized for its transphobic and homophobic rhetoric, The Chicago Reader reported. The group hosted ...


Gay News

WORLD Cuban referendum, Gay Games, Berlin attacks, Indian trans men
2022-07-31
Cuba's parliament announced that the country will hold a referendum on the legalization of same-sex marriage and surrogate parenthood, Deutsche Welle reported. The referendum on the new family law is scheduled to be held Sunday, Sept. ...


Gay News

Show about trans+ women models to debut Aug. 5 on Here TV
2022-07-29
The Here TV docuseries Road to the Runway—which focuses on trans+ women models—will debut Friday, Aug. 5. The series profiles the 20 hopefuls competing in this year's annual Slay Model search. Cameras follow the women to ...


Gay News

Trans artist to showcase woodworking on Aug. 13
2022-07-27
Trans artist J. Emmett (he/they), of J. Emmett Studios, will open his private studio for the first time to show his custom woodworking, along with works from local ceramicist Krista Tyner (she/her), of TynerWorks. The "A ...


Gay News

LETTERS The Church should practice love and constructive dialogue, not hate
2022-07-25
Another U.S. diocese has issued new restrictive policies regarding LGBTQ issues in Catholic schools, and its new directives compare being openly transgender with sexual abuse. The Roman Catholic Church is having an internal dialogue on how ...


 



Copyright © 2022 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.