Trans Day of Visibility



Transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming people have always uplifted and empowered our own. Our successes and achievements should be celebrated by all and we have always known that we deserve the same visibility as those outside of the community.

As a marginalised community, we have to fight and force our way into spaces to be seen – to be visible and valued outside of our world. Trans Day of Visibility is our way to continue to carve a space in a world that often does not always respond kindly to our visibility.

Transgender, non-binary and gender non-confirming people are estimated to make up around 1% of the UK population – we cannot make this visibility happen on our own. Cisgender allies play a large part in ensuring transgender, non-binary and gender non-conforming people are not just visible but are also safe in that visibility – safe to carve our own spaces and to join in those already existing spaces.

The space to create, the space to thrive, the space to rest, the space to celebrate and most importantly the space to be visible and seen.

 Take this day to show up in the ways that feel the most authentic and visible to you! Be Extra-Ordinary!

- Nic Farmer, Liberation Officer 



Trans Figures: Past & Present 

Chevalier d'Éon

5 October 1728 – 21 May 1810

• A French diplomat, spy and soldier, known for their involvement in international politics, high society and popular culture


• Although born in France, the Chevalier lived in London from 1762-1777 as a man, and from 1786-1810 as a woman.


• D'Éon fought in the Seven Years' War, and spied for France while in Russia and England.


• In 1756, d'Éon joined the secret network of spies called the Secret du Roi (King's Secret) employed by King Louis XV without the knowledge of the government.


• Was sent to Russia as a spy.


• D'Éon's career in Russia is the subject of one of Valentin Pikul's novels: Le chevalier d'Éon et la guerre de Sept ans.


• D’Eon first came to London in 1762 as part of the French embassy and helped negotiate the Peace of Paris, which ended the Seven Years War.


• Despite being awarded the Croix de St Louis and givin the title chevalier (French for knight, is also sometimes used for French noblemen.) D’Eon refused to return to France when recalled.


• Instead, d’Eon published secret correspondence that revealed French ministerial corruption and blackmailed the French King by threatening to disclose secret information about French invasion plans.


• To silence d’Eon, Louis XVI offered the Chevalier an official pension in 1775 but made the condition that d’Eon should henceforth dress as a woman.


- This is due to both claims made by D’Eon while in London that they had been assigned female at birth but raised as a boy because Louis d'Éon de Beaumont could only inherit from his in-laws if he had a son, D’Eon regularly cross dressing at balls and buying corsets.


- King Louis XVI and his court required that d'Éon dress appropriately in women's clothing in order to return to France.


- D'Éon was allowed to continue to wear the insignia of the Order of Saint-Louis.


- The king's offer also included funds for a new wardrobe of women's clothes.


• The Chevalier returned to Britain in 1785 and forged a new career performing fencing demonstrations.


• In England there was constant speculation and wagering about d’Eon’s gender. It was even the subject of a court trial that declared D’Eon to be a woman.


• Because the stereotype of a woman dressing as a man to join the army, often in pursuit of her sweetheart was widely recognised, the idea of d’Eon as a woman was accepted.


• d’Eon was upheld by pioneering feminists such as Mary Robinson and Mary Wollstonecraft as a shining example of ‘female fortitude’.


Jan Morris CBE

5 October 1728 – 21 May 1810

• Welsh historian, author and writer.

• In the closing stages of the Second World War, Morris served in the 9th Queen's Royal Lancers, and in 1945 was posted to the Free Territory of Trieste, during the joint British–American occupation, eventually serving as regimental intelligence officer.

• After the war Morris wrote for The Times, and in 1953 was its correspondent accompanying Edmund Hillary, whose expedition was the first to scale Mount Everest.

• Reporting from Cyprus on the Suez Crisis for the Manchester Guardian in 1956, Morris produced the first "irrefutable proof" of collusion between France and Israel in the invasion of Egyptian territory.

• Morris reported on the 1961 trial of Adolf Eichmann.

• In 1949, Morris married Elizabeth.

- they had five children together.

- they lived together for over 50 years, until Morris’ death in November 2020.

• Morris began transitioning to life as a woman in 1964.

• Had gender reassignment surgery after transitioning from male to female in 1972, traveling to Morocco to undergo surgery because doctors in Britain refused to allow the procedure unless Elizabeth and Jan divorced.

• She detailed her transition in Conundrum (1974), her first book under her new name, and one of the first autobiographies to discuss a personal gender reassignment.

April Ashley

29 April 1935 – 27 December 2021

• Born in Liverpool


• At the age of 25, having saved £3,000, Ashley had a seven-hour-long sex reassignment surgery on 12 May 1960, performed in Casablanca, Morocco, by Georges Burou.


• She began using the name April Ashley and became a successful fashion model.


• Appeared in British Vogue for which she was photographed by David Bailey.


• A small role in the 1962 film The Road to Hong Kong, which starred Bing Crosby and Bob Hope.


• A friend sold her story to the media in 1961 and The Sunday People outed Ashley as a trans woman. She became a centre of attention and some scandal and her film credit was dropped.


• In November 1960 Ashley met Hon. Arthur Corbett (later 3rd Baron Rowallan), the Eton-educated son and heir of Lord Rowallan. They married in 1963 but the marriage soon ended.


- Ashley's lawyers wrote to Corbett in 1966 demanding maintenance payments and in 1967 Corbett responded by filing suit to have the marriage annulled.


- The annulment was granted in 1970 on the grounds that Ashley was male, but Corbett had known about her history when they married.


Renee Richards

Born August 19, 1934

• American ophthalmologist and former tennis player who competed on the professional circuit in the 1970s.


• Became widely known following male-to-female sex reassignment surgery, when she fought to compete as a woman in the 1976 US Open.


• Went to the University of Rochester Medical Centre and specialized in ophthalmology, graduating in 1959.


• During college Richards began dressing as a woman, which at the time was considered to be a perversion, with transsexualism classified as a form of insanity.


• She began seeing Dr. Charles Ihlenfeld, a disciple of Harry Benjamin who specialized in endocrinology, transsexualism, and sexual reassignment. Upon seeing Ihlenfeld she began getting hormone injections with the long-term hope for a life change.


• In the mid-1960s she travelled in Europe dressed as a woman, intending to go to North Africa to see Georges Burou, a famous gynaecological surgeon at Clinique Parc in Casablanca, Morocco, regarding sex reassignment surgery; however, she ultimately decided against it and returned to New York.


• Richards married model Barbara Mole in June 1970, and together they had a son Nicholas in 1972. They were divorced in 1975.


• In the early 1970s, Richards resolved to undergo sex reassignment and was referred to surgeon Roberto C. Granato Sr. by Harry Benjamin, successfully transitioning in 1975.


• After surgery, Richards went to Newport Beach, California, and started working as an ophthalmologist in practice with another doctor.


• In 1976, Richards's gender reassignment was outed by local TV anchor Richard Carlson.


• Subsequently the United States Tennis Association (USTA), the Women's Tennis Association (WTA), and the United States Open Committee (USOC) required all female competitors to verify their sex with a Barr body test of their chromosomes.

• Richards applied to play in the US Open in 1976 as a woman, but refused to take the test.


• Richards then sued the United States Tennis Association (USTA), which runs the US Open, in New York state court, alleging discrimination by gender in violation of the New York Human Rights Law.

• She asserted that participating in the tournament would constitute "an acceptance of her right to be a woman."


• On August 16, 1977, Judge Alfred M. Ascione found in Richards's favor. Futher ruling that he USTA intentionally discriminated against Richards, and granted Richards an injunction against the USTA and the USOC, allowing her to play in the US Open.


• Richards played professionally from 1977 to 1981 when she retired at age 47.


• Richards was inducted into the USTA Eastern Tennis Hall of Fame in 2000.


• She now lives in a small town north of New York City with her platonic companion Arleen Larzelere.


Sam Smith

Born 19 May 1992

• English singer and songwriter known for collaboration with Naughty Boy with the song ‘LA LA LA’, number one single ‘Money on my Mind’ and the theme song ‘writing’s on the wall’ fpr the James Bond film Spectre.


• In May 2014, Smith came out to the public as gay.


• In September 2019, they announced a decision to come out as non-binary and change their gender pronouns to they/them.


Josie Totah

Born August 5, 2001

• An American actress, known for her recurring role on the Disney series Jessie and role as Lexi in the 2020 revival of saved by the bell.


• Totah began her career playing male roles but publicly came out as a Trans woman in August 2018, changing her first name to Josie.


• Totah has guest starred on the TV shows, New Girl, 2 Broke Girls, and Liv and Maddie.


• On August 20, 2018, Totah wrote an article published in Time in which she came out as a transgender woman.


Jonathan Van Ness

Born March 28, 1987

• American hairdresser, podcast host, activist, actor, author, and television personality.


• Best known for part on Netflix’s Queer Eye and for hosting the Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness podcast.


• Openly gay throughout his life.


• Although comfortable in his gender expression and sexuality, he says it took time to navigate other people's reactions.


• In the late 2010s, he realized he was gender non-conforming, and non-binary.


• Van Ness trained at the Aveda Institute in Minneapolis. After graduating, he worked in Arizona for five years before moving to Los Angeles in 2009.


• In 2013, while dressing the hair of friend Erin Gibson, who worked for Funny or Die. Gibson asked Van Ness to perform a recap of a Game of Thrones episode for Funny or Die, which would become the Gay of Thrones web series.


• Van Ness's memoir, Over the Top: A Raw Journey to Self-Love was published in October 2019 and discusses both his past and how it shaped his future.


• Van Ness is non-binary. Although Van Ness has stated a preference for using the pronouns he/him, he has also used she/her and they/them interchangeably.


• On April 4, 2019, Van Ness and Queer eye co-stars Bobby Berk, Tan France and Antoni Porowski visited Nancy Pelosi and Ocasio-Cortez to discuss the Equality Act, a bill that would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of classes protected in the Civil Rights Act of 1964.


• On June 23, 2020, Van Ness praised recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions that ruled that LGBT employment discrimination was a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. However, still urged the United States Congress to pass the proposed Equality Act.


• In December 2020, Van Ness revealed that he had married his partner, Mark Peacock.


Elliot Page

Born February 21, 1987

• Canadian actor and producer known for his roles in:

- Juno


- X-men franchise


- The Umbrella Academy


• On December 1, 2020, Page came out as transgender on his social media accounts, specified his pronouns as he/him and they/them, and revealed his new name, Elliot.


• Page explained that his decision to speak openly about his gender identity was partially prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and partially by the anti-transgender rhetoric in politics and the news cycle.


• That same day, subscription streaming service and production company Netflix announced that it would immediately adjust the credits in its streaming library to Elliot.


- These changes were completed by December 8 on the films Tallulah (2016) and Flatliners (2017), the television series The Umbrella Academy (first two seasons, 2019–2020), and the television miniseries Tales of the City (2019).


• Page appeared on the cover of the March 29 / April 5, 2021 issue of Time, making him the first openly trans man to do so. He requested that Wynne Neilly photograph him for the cover because he wanted another transgender person to be the photographer.


• He then revealed that at the time he came out, he had been recovering from undergoing top surgery, a process that he described as "not only life-changing but lifesaving".


Nikkie De Jager

Born 2 March 1994

• Known though her YouTube channel ‘NikkieTutorials’


• Dutch makeup artist and beauty vlogger.


• De Jager first began uploading videos to YouTube in 2008, at the age of 14.


• After uploading videos for about two years, she studied a makeup course at B Academy in Amsterdam, then signed to Colourfool Agency in 2011, working as a professional makeup artist.


• De Jager left Colourfool Agency at the beginning of 2014 to work as a freelance hair and makeup artist.


• Forbes magazine named De Jager one of the top ten beauty "influencers" in 2017.


• In January 2019, it was announced that De Jager would serve as the Global Beauty Adviser for Marc Jacobs Beauty.


• On 12 June 2020, it was announced that De Jager will be a goodwill ambassador at the United Nations.


• On 10 February 2020, it was announced that De Jager would be the online host of the Eurovision Song Contest 2020, which was going to be held in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The event was later cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


• De Jager later appeared as a co-host in the replacement show Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light, broadcast on 16 May 2020.


• On 18 September 2020, she was confirmed to return as a co-host of the 2021 contest.


• She was the first transgender person to host the contest.


• On 13 January 2020, De Jager uploaded a video to her YouTube channel, titled "I'm Coming Out".


- She revealed that she is transgender and that she had been blackmailed by someone who threatened to make her assigned sex at birth public.


• Her fiancé, Dylan, proposed in August 2019


Michaela Jaé Rodriguez

Born January 7, 1991

• American actress and singer known for her role in Pose.


• She took the stage name "Mj" Rodriguez after the Marvel Comics character Mary Jane "MJ" Watson, putting the letters together from parts of her birth name and enjoying the reference.


• First role was as angel in the off Broadway production rent and once the production was completed decided to take an acting hiatus in order transition.


• Had hormone replacement therapy in 2016 and then came off hiatus, contacting her representation to inform them that she was no longer auditioning for male roles.


• From 2012 to 2016, Rodriguez appeared in small television roles, including Nurse Jackie, The Carrie Diaries, and Luke Cage.


• Her 2016 appearance in the non-speaking role of "Sister Boy" on Luke Cage also marked the first appearance of both a transgender actress and character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.


• In 2017, Rodriguez was cast in the leading role of Blanca Evangelista in the FX series Pose.


• The show made history by casting five transgender actresses in leading roles.


• In 2019 Rodriguez became the first openly transgender woman to win Best Actress - Television at the Imagen Awards.


• In 2021, she became the first transgender woman to receive an Emmy Award nomination in a major acting category; she was nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her performance in the third and final season of Pose.


• On January 9, 2022, Rodriguez won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama at the 79th Golden Globe Awards, becoming the first transgender actor to win a Golden Globe in the history of the awards.


Hunter Schafer

Born December 31, 1998

• American fashion model, actress, and LGBTQ rights activist best known for her role as Jules in the HBO series Euphoria.


• born in Trenton, New Jersey but grew up in North Carolina.


• Schafer has modelled for Prada, Dior, Miu Miu, Calvin Klein and more.


• Schafer is a trans woman.


• For her activism regarding HB2, Teen Vogue listed Schafer on its "21 Under 21" list in 2017, and granted her an interview with former United States Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.


• In an interview, she said that the Internet helped her cope with her gender identity.


- She used YouTube and social media to learn about people's transition timelines.


• In December 2021, she stated on Twitter that her sexuality is "bi or pan or something"



Trans Figures in History. Jan Morris CBE. Chevalier d'Eon, April AshleyRising Trans Figures. Elliot Page. Sam Smith. Josie Totah.

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