The National Trans Bar Association is proud to announce the 2017 Transgender Law Institute

The National Trans Bar Association (NTBA) with the National LGBT Bar Association will be holding the annual Transgender Law Institute on August 4, 2017 in San Francisco, CA.

The day long Institute features leading advocates for transgender rights and focuses on pressing legal issues facing our communities. It is also an opportunity for transgender and gender non-conforming lawyers, legal advocates, law students, and allies to build community and network.

 Apply to Transgender Law Institute

(You will be redirected to the LGBT Bar Association's website)

This year’s Institute is in conjunction with the LGBT Bar Association’s annual Lavender Law conference. Assistance may be available to accepted applicants for whom the cost of registering for Lavender Law is a hardship. Questions?

Program Schedule and Description

Thursday, August 3rd, 2017

7:00pm Social event

The Transgender Law Center and the National Trans Bar Association are co-hosting a meet up.  Come connect with trans and gender non-conforming lawyers, legal advocates and our allies from across the country and learn more about the exciting work being done by the National Trans Bar Association and the Transgender Law Center. Barbarossa Lounge, 714 Montgomery Street, San Francisco.

Friday, August 4th, 2017

Three continuing legal education (CLE) credits are available for the day.

9:00-9:15AM Welcome Remarks

9:15-10:45am Plenary Session: Civil Rights Across Movements (Non-CLE)

Transgender people’s lives and our loved ones/communities are impacted by (and impact) the work of multiple civil rights issues and social justice movements. It is therefore in our interest to better understand the similarities and differences between other movements for law reform/ social justice and explore opportunities to collaborate across movements. Civil Rights leaders from a range of movements not primarily focused on transgender people will share insights that drive their work including: priorities of their work/organizations; their strategies for building cross-movement alliances; guiding principles in their approach to social change; and how they see transgender rights/justice work as affecting or being affected by their work.


  • Chinyere Ezie, Trial Attorney, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission


  • Bishop Tonyia Rawls,  Founder and Co-Director, The Freedom Center for Social Justice

  • Ivan Espinoza Madrigal, Executive Director, Lawyers Committee on Civil Rights

  • Maya Rupert, Senior Director, Policy & Managing Director, Center for Reproductive Rights

  • Victoria Rodriguez-Roldan, Trans/Gender Non-Conforming Justice Project Director at the National LGBTQ Task Force

10:45AM-11:45AM Trans Immigration and Mass Incarceration

This panel will discuss how transgender people are treated in the United States immigration and criminal justice systems, both inside and outside of detention. Panelists will discuss the impact of recent changes in federal immigration policy, the collateral consequences of criminal convictions, and the biased targeting of people of color by police and ICE.


  • Christina Lee, Immigration Attorney, Becker & Lee LLP


  • Flor Bermudez, Managing Attorney & Detention Project Director, Transgender Law Center

  • Kyle Rapinan, Survival and Self Determination Project Director, Sylvia Rivera Law Project

  • Clement Kai Lee, Supervising Attorney,  Sex Workers Project and CARCEN-NY

  • Sharita Gruberg, Associate Director of LGBT Research and Communication Project, Center for American Progress

11:45AM-12:00PM Coffee Break

12:00-1:00pm Securing Trans Rights at the State Level

State legislatures, with the help of national anti-trans organizations, are using state legislation to eliminate or significantly limit the ability of trans people to access schools, public accommodations, shelter, and medical offices. These bills use a variety of tactics, including the use of religious exemptions and "liberty" claims, false medical claims about the immutability of sex, and unwarranted fears about trans people and the threats our existence poses to others. This panel will provide an update on the shifting landscape of state and federal legislation, particularly in the Trump era, and discuss strategies for fighting back.


  • Ma’ayan Anafi, Policy Counsel, National Center for Transgender Equality


  • Ashe McGovern, Legislative & Policy Director, Public Rights/Private Conscience Project at Columbia Law School

  • Ames Simmons, Director of Transgender Policy, Equality North Carolina

  • Dr. Marisa Richmond

  • Benjamin Panico, Equality Project Manager, National Center for Lesbian Rights

1:00-2:00pm Lunch & Small-Group Discussions 

Break out groups will be held on subjects like identity documents, healthcare access, reproductive justice, and small firm/solo practitioner work for attendees interested in engaging in more focused, practice-oriented discussions. However, for attendees needing to unwind, check email, or network, this can serve as unstructured time as well.

2:00-3:00pm  Public Accommodations

Description: This panel will explore nascent and emerging theories and strategies for developing theories for advancing trans rights in the areas of public accommodations, including under federal civil rights laws and the First, Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Panelists will address advocacy concerning access to single-sex facilities, including in situations where nudity is customary, and responding to privacy arguments raised by opponents of trans rights, as well as access to other sex-segregated societal institutions, such as sports.


  • Alexander Chen, 2017 Equal Justice Works Fellow, National Center for Lesbian Rights


  • Shannon Minter, Legal Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights

  • Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, Staff Attorney, Lambda Legal

  • Yosenio Lewis, The Center for Excellence for Transgender Health

  • Ashland Johnson, Director of Public Education and Research, Human Rights Campaign

3:00-4:00pm Advocating for Non-Binary Transgender People

This panel will explore strategies for litigation, policy advocacy, and messaging that encompasses the needs of non-binary people. It will assess the impact that common litigation and policy strategies may have on non-binary people, including how we frame sex discrimination and Equal Protection claims, how we present concepts related to gender identity and transition, and how we respond to a variety of arguments raised by opponents invoking non-binary people.


  • Ezra Cukor, Staff Attorney, NYC Commission on Human Rights


  • Ma’ayan Anafi, Policy Counsel, National Center for Transgender Equality

  • Ashe McGovern, Legislative & Policy Director, Public Rights/Private Conscience Project

  • Shawn Thomas Meerkamper, Staff Attorney, Transgender Law Center

  • Ghenete Wright Muir, Esq.

  • Anne Tamar-Mattis, Founder & Legal Director, InterAct

4:00-4:15pm Coffee Break

4:15-5:15pm Trans Participation in the Military

Despite a long history of military policies prohibiting them from serving openly, transgender people are disproportionately likely to have served in the military. This panel will explore the factors that push trans individuals to consider military service and discuss the prospects for trans persons seeking to serve serve openly or access gender-related healthcare -- while enlisted or as veterans -- as well as critiques of the movement to make the military more trans inclusive.


  • Kylar Broadus, Senior Counsel, Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund


  • Maureen Siedor, Esq., Staff Attorney, Inner City Law Center

  • Aaron Belkin, Founding Director, Palm Center

  • Captain Sage Fox

  • Paula Neira, Esq., RN, Clinical Director, Johns Hopkins Center for Transgender Health

5:15-5:30PM Closing Remarks



  • 9:00-9:15AM Check-in & Welcome Remarks

  • 9:15-10:45AM Plenary Session: Civil Rights Across Movements

  • 10:45-11:45AM Panel: Public Accommodations

  • 11:45AM-12:00PM Coffee Break

  • 12:00-1:00PM Panel: Securing Trans Rights at the State Level

  • 1:00-2:00PM Lunch & Break-out Groups 

  • 2:00-3:00PM Panel: Trans Immigration and Mass Incarceration

  • 3:00-4:00PM Panel: Advocating for Non-Binary Transgender People

  • 4:00-4:15PM Coffee Break

  • 4:15-5:15PM Panel: Trans Participation in the Military

  • 5:15-5:30PM Closing Remarks

Apply to Transgender Law Institute