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Board of Directors

Rikki Nathanson (she/her) – Chair

United States

Rikki Nathanson is a fierce activist for the rights of trans and gender-diverse persons globally.  She comes with a wealth of experience in the corporate business management and non-profit sectors, in excess of 20 years.  She brings extensive knowledge in finance, organizational development, and movement building. Originally from Southern Africa, she formed the first trans-specific and trans-led organization in Zimbabwe in 2015, after being unlawfully arrested for using a female restroom at a local hotel.  She then was instrumental in the formation of the Southern Africa Trans Forum [SATF], the strongest trans movement in Africa. Her dedication to the cause and the plight of the trans community saw the SATF grow from 5 to 19 organizations over 3 years.  

She moved to the USA for her own safety, after challenging and subsequently beating, the Zimbabwe police for her unlawful arrest.  The ground-breaking judgment handed down in her civil suit against the government of Zimbabwe has positively changed the legal landscape for trans and gender-diverse persons not only in that country but further afield. She continues her bid to improve the plight of LGBTIQ persons globally in her work with OutRight Action International, GATE (Global Action for Trans Equality), IRGT (International Reference Group of Trans Women), SHE (Social Health Empowerment), South Africa, and Trans Bantu Association, Zambia.

Professionally, she holds a qualification with the Institute of Chartered Secretaries & Administrators of Zimbabwe

The trans diverse and intersex populations have always been at the mercy of a patriarchal, misogynistic, heteronormative world. We face unspeakable levels of violence, stigma, discrimination, and ostracization. Working at a high policy level, GATE has attempted to fight this cruel system. As a fierce advocator for the inclusion of all, I felt that it was vital for me to become part of the board. By joining forces with an organization that was already doing such meaningful work, I felt that my contribution would make that extra bit of difference and help the cause.

Rikki Nathanson

Orneill Latiyah (she/her) – Board Secretary

Ivory Coast

A young trans feminist activist, Latiyah is the founder and executive director of Transgender and Rights, a young organization based in Côte d’Ivoire created in 2017. She is passionate about Human Rights, Social Justice and the Legal recognition of transgender people. Engaged towards her communities since 2015, she is also part of different initiatives in order to strengthen the work of LGBTIQ+ organizations and communities from West Africa but specifically trans* organizations and communities as well as the living conditions of her local transgender community. Member of the African Queer Youth Initiative, she is the current Chair of the Board of Directors. Latiyah recently joined GATE as a board member to further her commitment to the recognition of the human rights of transgender people around the world. She is a representative-like of our West African trans* communities, who have not always had the opportunity to take positions at such a broad level. As Bilingual, Latiyah will serve as a bridge between GATE and the trans and gender non conforming communities from French-speaking Africa.

GATE work is important because our different trans* communities are still left behind when it comes to talk about the effective realization of the Human Rights of people all around the world. GATE work is a broader way for us to advocate for our Rights since we have not always the spaces and opportunities to speak louder against issues and violations we are facing in our everyday lives. I found important to be engaged with GATE because it’s vital for me to be one of the pillars of the Global Advocacy we are about to do for our communities in terms of accessing Social Justices.

Orneill Latiyah

Tamara Adrian (she/her) – Board Member

Venezuela

Lawyer and Doctor in Law, graduated with honors. Law Profesor. Human Rights Activist. First trans woman elected to the national parliament in Venezuela (2015). President of the International Committee for the Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia IDAHOT 17 May; Co-Chair of the BOD of GATE; member of the BOD of AllOut, Icaso and PLAFAM; Member of the Steering Committee of the World Movement for Democracy and of the Unesco Chair on Sexual Health and Human Rights.

The youth LGBTI community is in need of positive examples of activism and work, and the best way to do it is by acting, working and having incidence at all possible levels -local, national and international- in the field of equal protection and human rights for the LGBT community. This kind of example will motivate the new generation to be engaged in action for equal rights.

Tamara Adrian

A. Chaber (they/them) – Board Member

Belgium

Chaber has been involved in the trans and LGBTI movements for over 10 years, primarily in Europe and Central Asia. They are currently working as Finance Director of ILGA-Europe – the network of European and Central Asian LGBTI organisations, and previously have been an Executive Director of KPH – Polish national advocacy and mobilisation NGO. They are also a current Steering Committee Member of the International Trans Fund. Before that, they have served on boards of international organisations and intermediaries, primarily supporting financial management and fundraising, organisational management and strategic planning.

GATE is a comprehensive and thoughtful organisation that conducts itself carefully and strategically in a complex world of stake-holders. GATE enacts change and enables trans movements across the world. I joined the Board of GATE because it is a privilege to be able to support this work.

A. Chaber

Kelley Winters (she/her) – Board Member [Nerd in residence]

United States

Kelley Winters, Ph.D., (she/her) is a mom of grown sons, a Silicon Valley industry refugee, and an interdisciplinary scholar and advocate on issues of gender diversity in medical and public policy. She is the founder of the Trans Policy Reform blog and administrator of the International Transgender Health Facebook group of nearly 9000 members. Kelley is the author of Gender Madness in American Psychiatry: Essays from the Struggle for Dignity (2008) and a chapter in the anthology, Families in Transition: Parenting Gender Diverse Children (2019). She has presented papers on diagnostic policy issues at multiple symposia of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) and annual meetings of the American Psychiatric Association. She served on the International Advisory Panel for the WPATH Standards of Care, Version 7, and was recognized in the 2013 Trans 100 Inaugural List for her community contributions. Kelley wanders the highways of America in an electric Chevy, ever in search of comfort food.

I have been honored to work with the tireless advocates at Global Action for Trans Equality for more than a dozen years. With GATE support, I was a contributor to the International Congress on Gender Identity and Human Rights in 2010 and the GATE Civil Society Expert Working Group in 2013. In collaboration with GATE and the STP campaign, I was a signatory to the 2016 “Berlin Statement” on childhood Gender Incongruence diagnosis in the ICD-11. In my years of Trans health policy scholarship and advocacy on four continents, GATE has been a source of personal inspiration and growth.

Kelley Winters

Eszter Kismödi (she/her) – Board Member

Switzerland

Eszter Kismödi (she/her) is an international human rights lawyer for Hungary specializing in sexual and reproductive health and rights, human rights, and legal and policy aspects of sexuality, gender expression and gender and bodily diversity. Currently, she is the Chief Executive of SRHM, which promotes sexual and reproductive health and rights globally through its multidisciplinary, open-access, peer-reviewed journal.

Previously, she worked as an independent human rights lawyer for UNAIDSUNHCRUNDP Asia Pacific HubOHCHRWHOWAS and CREA, and was a human rights adviser at WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research. She worked on depathologization of gender identity and expression in the ICD, leading WHO’s work on elimination of forced sterilization of key populations and co-coordinating collaborative research into legal gender recognition for UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub. She is a member of the UNAIDS Reference Group on HIV and Human Rights.

Since 2016, she has been a visiting fellow at the Global Health Justice Partnership of the Yale Law School and Yale School of Public Health. She is a regular guest lecturer at various universities, has been published extensively in international journals, and has contributed to several WHO and other UN publications.