Dignity/Boston’s own Marcia Garber presented at North Shore Community College’s 36th Forum on Tolerance, April 14 & 15. North Shore Community College (NSCC) is one of 15 community colleges in Massachusetts. It’s located just north of Boston with campuses in Danvers, Lynn, and Middleton. The College has held forums on various topics related to social justice including LGBTQ people and the Catholic Church, aging, coming out, and this current forum on transgender issues.
Marcia’s personal story touched the hearts of many. Our college community has shared with each other the power of Marcia’s presentation, making a difference in the lives of our community. As both presenter and participant, Marcia shares her thoughts here:
This year’s forum topic was "Thinking Outside the Gender Box."
Alishia Ouellette , the keynote speaker, and the first Massachusetts firefighter to transition on the job, shared her life experience with an extremely attentive audience. A Navy veteran, trans activist, and member of the Native American community, she captured the essence of her journey at this particularly challenging time for those of the transgender community.
Dr. Tiffany Magnolia and Dr. Kara Kaufman followed with their informative presentations related to history of language, gender, and sexuality and their limits of fitting inside "The Box.”
The final panel, a parent of a trans person, a NSCC openly trans student, and the Executive Director of the North Shore Alliance of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth shared their "Stories From The Heart."
The second day of the forum’s topic was Safe Zone Training presented by Brian Falter, Assistant Coordinator of Student Life.
I was delighted to participate in this forum, especially at this contentious time in her/history. The audience had ample opportunity to share stories and ask questions. The forum has a website for further information.
Education is key to moving beyond tolerance to acceptance.
Submitted by Marcia Garber/CJ's Mom
Introduction by David Houle, NSCC staff and Dignity/Boston member