Conference Session Speakers

Dee Dee Ngozi Chamblee is an executive and a seasoned advocate within and for the Transgender community. Ms Chamblee is a mentor, life coach and consultant who brings over 20 years of solid community based grassroots organizing experience. She is currently Executive Director of LaGender Inc., an organization created to be an advocate on the unique issues transgender personas face daily such as HIV/AIDS, homelessness, access to Trans-competent healthcare, access to mental health care, and spiritual counseling. In 2011 Ms.Chamblee was honored by President Obama as a “Champion of Change”; her blog on “Transgender Equality” debuted on the White House website.  Ms. Chamblee continues to make change happen in Atlanta, as Co-founder of Solutions Not Punishment Coalition (SnapCo), a trans-led group of social justice organizations and members that came together to stop the Banishment Ordinance that would have banished sex workers from the city of Atlanta. SnapCo came up with a better solution- the Pre-Arrest Diversion Program {PAD} which redirects sex workers and other low level offenders into case management instead of jail.

Author of Trans-Gendered: Theology, Ministry, and Communities of Faith (Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry, Justin Sabia-Tanis earned his PhD from the Graduate Theological Union in Interdisciplinary Studies, focusing on the intersections of sexuality, art, and religion. He earned a Master’s degree at Harvard University and a previous doctorate from San Francisco Theological Seminary. He brings with him a long history with grassroots activism, including participating in ACT-UP and Queer Nation in the 1980s and serving as spokesperson and media coordinator for the Hawai’i Equal Rights Marriage Project in the 1990s. Justin’s work also includes advocacy for LGBT rights in national non-profit organizations. He was the Community Education and Outreach Manager at the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) in Washington, D.C. and later served as the Director of Communications for Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, which works for equal employment rights for LGBT people. He currently works for the Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion.

Katy & Mac have served Presbyterian Churches in Florida, New Jersey, Arizona and North Carolina for 25 years. Presently Mac is the pastor at Hudson Memorial Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, NC and Katy is the director of Children & Family Ministries at First Presbyterian Church in Raleigh. Mac and Katy are the parents of four children. They have a transgender daughter who was the only teenage plaintiff in the HB2 (Bathroom Bill) lawsuit in North Carolina. They have shared their family’s story of growth and understanding with churches, schools and civic organizations.

Born Eric Karl Swenson in 1947, Erin Katrina Swenson, Th.M, PhD made history when she became the first mainstream ordained minister to retain her ordination within the Presbyterian Church (USA) after changing gender expression. She has practiced Marriage and Family Therapy since 1978 with her recent practice focusing on transgender clients and their families. Erin values being family with her ex-spouse and their two children. She spends her free time training for triathlons. You can visit her website at erinswenson.com

Susan L. Jelinek, MDiv, BCC is Staff Chaplain II, Pastoral Care and part of the Transgender Clinic Team at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. A co-author for “Screening for Spiritual Struggle in an Adolescent Transgender Clinic: Feasibility and Acceptability” in the Journal of Health Care Chaplaincy, Susan Jelinek has demonstrated how research, spiritual care, and clinical care can intersect and interwoven for improved outcomes for patients and their families. In 2017, Susan L. Jelinek was awarded the Anton Boisen Professional Service Award by the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC) for her commitment to excellence in professional chaplaincy and her unique contribution to contemporary chaplaincy care. Susan Jelinek is also a devoted fan of the Chicago Cubs.

Conference Workshop Track Speakers

Mary A. Sullivan received her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Virginia. She has provided education and counseling to adolescents, young adults, and those who care for and about them for over 25 years. Working with this population means advocating fiercely for them as well, and she has enormous respect for how youth and young adults handle the challenges they face. In addition to her Side by Side position, she is the adolescent advocacy and outreach program director at the UVA Teen and Young Adult Health Center.

She is a very proud mother of three passionate and compassionate young adults: Lucy, 27; Jackson, 24; and Isabel, 21.

Conference Organizers

Dr. Michael Adee

Director, Global Faith & Justice Project

Jill Duffield

Editor and Publisher,
Presbyterian Outlook

Rev. Dr. Ken Henry

Sr. Pastor & Head of Staff at Westminster Presbyterian Church

Floyd Thompkins, Jr.

Director, Center for Innovation and Ministry at SFTS & Applied Wisdom Institute

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