Our Sponsors

Dr. Tony Mangubat - Seattle Cosmetic Surgery
Dr. Tony Mangubat - Seattle Cosmetic Surgery
Dr. Tony Mangubat - Seattle Cosmetic Surgery
Dr. Toby R. Meltzer - Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Scottsdale, AZ
Dr. Toby R. Meltzer - Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Scottsdale, AZ
Dr. Toby R. Meltzer - Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery - Scottsdale, AZ
Gender Confirmation Center by Dr. Scott Mosser
Gender Confirmation Center by Dr. Scott Mosser
Gender Confirmation Center by Dr. Scott Mosser

Community Program

Photo by Cathy Renna, 2016.

Facilitated Discussions

Gender Odyssey generates in-house programming each year based on attendee feedback and word-on-the-street discussions in an effort to create sessions that are timely and relevant to our changing, growing communities. Attendees are encouraged to contribute their personal experience and workshops are facilitated by valued community members.


Caucus space is designed specifically for people who share a common identity, issue, or circumstance to come together, talk, debrief, or simply hang out. We ask that only those who feel they are personally aligned with the listed caucus topic access this space. There will not be a facilitator so please keep in mind the discussion guidelines located at the beginning of your program book.

Town Meetings

Town Meetings are a place to share our personal experiences and know that they will be heard, and to listen to others with the intent to learn from — not judge – their experiences.  Bring concrete examples from your own life to add to a larger picture of the complex and challenging ways we individually and jointly construct our lives and our culture.

People had an opportunity to speak and be heard. I appreciated different perspectives from a variety of cultures, ages, and experiences. – Gender Odyssey attendee

Attendee-Driven Workshops

Gender Odyssey is privileged to have a large number of informative sessions that come from individuals from within our own communities.  These sessions may include hands-on experiential workshops, research or informational presentations, or topical discussions.  We are deeply grateful for the contributions of our presenters and the depth and breadth they provide to the Gender Odyssey program.

In-house Programming

Gender Odyssey generates in-house programming each year based on attendee feedback and word-on-the-street discussions in an effort to create sessions that are timely and relevant to our changing, growing communities.

Conference Programming

The complete schedule for the 2017 conference will be available in early summer 2017. Surgeons who will be presenting include Toby Meltzer, Marci Bowers, Joel Beck, Paul Steinwald, Javad Sajan, Scott Mosser, Tony Mangubat, Burt Webb, Ellie Zara Ley, Thomas Satterwhite, and Bauback Safa. Below are descriptions of some of this year’s workshops.

Advanced Identity: Credit Reports and Lexis-Nexis
Learn about advanced information collectors such as Credit reporting companies and Lexis-Nexis and the power these agencies have to out you to potential employers and internet trolls.
Brianna Schuman

Affordable Aesthetics
This workshop will examine a variety of more affordable aesthetic procedures that can assist an individual in moving towards a more feminine or more masculine appearance.
Dr. Linda Gromko

Building Alliances with Unlikely Allies
This workshop offers our experiences of building alliances with law enforcement and corrections agencies. We discuss how we’ve created trans-friendly policy and built alliances with those often seen as enemies.
Jim Ritter, Beth Rietema, Erika Laurentz

Boy Brain? Girl Brian? Human Brain: The Neuroscience of Gender and Sexuality
In this talk, the interplay between sex and gender will be explored from a neurological perspective, with respect and acknowledgement given to the diversity of gender expression and identity in human beings. Additionally, we’ll explore and discuss sexuality, and the fact that brains of all genders sense and perceive the world in a mind-blowingly unique way.
Atom Lesiak, PhD

Coming Out, Countertransference, and Community: A Workshop for Trans and Gender Fluid/Queer Clinicians
Join other trans & gender fluid/Queer clinicians for a conversation about the unique joys and challenges of our work.
Elijah C. Nealy, PhD, M.Div., LCSW

Constructive White Conversations
This workshop is a gathering in which those of us who identify as white can speak freely and openly about race, racism, oppression, isolation, and all related issues. This is a place for white people who want to understand and dismantle racism, build and maintain white anti-racist community, and explore the nature of white identity.
Stoop Nilsson

Coping with Loss throughout Transition
Gender transition can be a whirlwind of emotional experiences, both for the person transitioning, and for their friends and family members. Gain concrete understandings of the source of our reactions and ways to gain emotional growth and resilience through difficulties, rather than simply face trauma and fear.
Fawn Oates

Gender, Race, and Self-Determination
In this workshop we will look at three categories of racism: individual, institutional, and structural. The goal is to introduce language and concepts to push us forward in our awareness of how white supremacy is the ideological framework for the formation of the Settler Colonial nation-state called the United States.
Sé Sullivan, PhD

Immediate Post-operative Care following SRS and/or Breast Augmentation
The workshop and discussion will present a thorough understanding of how you will approach your recovery after SRS and/or Breast Augmentation surgery. We will also focus on on-going care and hygiene.
Nicola Summers

In Full Bloom: Transcending Gender to Fight Stigma
Participants will view the groundbreaking documentary In Full Bloom: Transcending Gender and have an opportunity to meet its producers and stars.

Insurance Approval for Surgery in Challenging Times
In a challenging age, it’s important to understand the process of insurance approval for surgery, as well as the strategies and requirements of getting insurance approval. Dr. Mosser will discuss insurance approval and demystify the steps involved.
Dr. Scott Mosser

Intersexions: Black, Queer, and Intersex
Ever thought about what does the I stand for in LGBTQIA*? It surely doesn’t stand for invisible! Actually about 1.5% of the population is born intersex. We’re not rare, just invisible. What is Intersex? Come learn exactly what being intersex means and how to be an inclusive ally to the community.
Jonathan Leggette

Listen & Build: Implementing a Comprehensive Transgender Health Center in Academia
This presentation tells a story and seeks wisdom through engaged dialogue between healthcare leaders and community members. The presenters, senior diversity and inclusion and clinical leaders, will describe the challenges and opportunities of implementing a Center for Transgender Health at Johns Hopkins Medicine, a health system anchored in academic medicine.
James Page, Paula M. Neira, Eloiza Domingo-Snyder

National Standards for TGIQ Health and Navigating Health Environment
Navigating health environments can be difficult and scary. Join RAD Remedy to learn more about the National Standards for TGIQ Health and how you can get better care when you need it most.
Riley Johnson

Practical Safety in a Sometimes Dangerous World
Attitude and preparedness can significantly influence the odds of being a victim and of surviving an attack. This workshop offers an overview on the pros and cons of the options that you have, including: trusting your intuition; choosing a safe place to live; and using non-lethal and lethal weapons. The workshop begins with an overview of the laws on self-defense; and a brief discussion on what to expect from the legal system.
Erika Laurentz

Prison Perspective
Join Dr. Lori Jespersen on a descent into the California prison system…. We will explore the realities of life behind bars for transgender & transgender POC inmates, survival tactics, challenges, relevant laws, and the intersection of reality. The goal of the workshop is to glimpse into the transgender inmate reality, and then explore means of engaging the human being beyond parole.
Dr. Lori Jesperson

Putting on the Oxygen Mask: Self-Care for Trans Leaders and Activists
Maintaining self-care as an activist-leader is a difficult yet important aspect of being a whole and effective leader. Topics covered in this workshop include: defining self-care and explaining its importance, tips and discussion about self-care from peers, strategies for incorporating self-care into everyday life, and staying accountable to a self-care plan.
Shaun Connors

Q&A with Lei “Ray” Ming
Join our Friday keynote speaker Lei Ming, author of Life Beyond My Body: A Transgender Journey to Manhood in China (Transgress Press, 2016), for further exploration of trans life in China. Ray will share more of his story and answer your questions in a more intimate setting than the formal plenary setting provides.
Stories beyond Gender: Social Media Storytelling as Creative Activism
Social media storytelling, or creative digital self-representation offers gender-diverse people an opportunity to speak back, on their own terms. In this workshop, we’ll think through privacy and publicness together and learn some strategies for selective disclosure.
Son Vivienne

The Fun Art and Science of Resonance in Speaking: Laughing, Coughing, and Throat-Clearing
This workshop will provide the speech and voice science behind resonance (tone), as well as practical exercises and analysis based in science and performance voice that will allow participants to investigate how to manipulate and change their own resonance (tone).
Sandy Hirsch, MS, CCC-SLP

The Grand Finale: Aging, Elder Law, and End-of-Life Planning
Aging isn’t easy, but ignoring the inevitable sure can be. Regardless of your financial or support situations, it’s important that you be prepared for that unknown time in the future when you might not be able to take care of or make decisions for yourself. A Washington attorney with LGBT elder law focus will share important tips and information everyone should know about regardless of your age or income.
Eleanor Doermann, JD

Trans Teens & Adults: Reconciling Your Inner Child
For trans-spectrum adults of every generation, moving beyond the pain and trauma of childhood into a joyful and productive adulthood can be a lifelong struggle. TransActive staff members Jenn Burleton and Kit Crosland will dynamically and interactively explore with attendees ways to convert negative personal experiences into positive community advocacy and opportunities for engagement.
Kit Crosland, Jenn Burleton

Wise Peer: Listening and Support for Those with a Traumatic Past
When we listen to difficult histories, it can be deeply triggering and exhausting. We may feel the need to shut down, correct, run from, or attack the speaker, or divert attention to ourselves. Wise Peer teaches participants how to listen so that it is healing (to both, the speaker and the listener), preventing the triggering that can traumatize the listener when others share.
India Susanne Holden

You’re Doing WHAT?
After the Dust Settles

For many of us, understanding gender identity and our loved one’s decision to transition is uncharted territory. The “whys” we have in our heads can be scary and overwhelming. We sometimes make desperate attempts to understand the complexities of our family member’s new gender identity. In these two workshops, we will share our feelings, listen to each other’s experiences, and ask questions in a comfortable, confidential environment.
Brenda Bowers

In-House Discussion Groups:

The Lighter Side of Race
Frequently, when someone mentions the word race, the conversation centers on the experiences and challenges of those who are black. While this examination is crucial, the voices of other people-of-color who may be of Asian, Latinx, Indigenous, Middle Eastern, or mixed-race descent are also in need of being heard. Let’s share our experiences with each other and create the dialogue we strain to hear.

Trans-er Than Thou
It may not be hard for those of us at this conference to reach a consensus regarding the outside world’s view of transgender people. We might easily agree that trans people are discriminated against and misunderstood by many in the outside world. What happens when we look at the differences within our collective gender communities? We’ll look at these differences with a goal of gaining a fresh perspective and a chance to celebrate our unique lives together.

  • Don’t Box Me In, Gender Fluidity
  • Genderqueer Sexuality
  • Being Trans Doesn’t Make Me Crazy or Does It?
  • Chest Surgery Show and Tell for All Genders
  • Shaving, Grooming, Dressing, Oh My!
  • Just One of the Gals
  • A Different Take on Passing: A Trans Feminine Experience
  • Celebrating Femininity: Claiming Our Space
  • Just One of the Guys, Pts. 1 and 2
  • Fag 101
  • Unpacking Stealth
  • What I Don’t Usually Say about My Gender
  • Leadership and Organizing
  • Some Time Ago: Trans Elders from the Heart
  • Intersections of Trans Identity and Aging
  • Sexuality, Intimacy, and Our Bodies, Pts. 1 and 2
  • Fasten Your Seatbelt
  • Shifting Identities, Expanding Desires
  • Rules of Attraction: Exploring Trans-Specific Desire
  • Grief, Loss, and Transformation
  • Celebrating Your Path: Rites of Passage
  • Spirituality and Trans Identity
  • What’s the Rush?
  • Seven-Year Itch

Also see: People of Color Program