News Briefs: Former trans law center ED moves to task force

  • by Cynthia Laird, News Editor
  • Wednesday February 14, 2024
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Kris Hayashi. Photo: Courtesy National LGBTQ Task Force<br>
Kris Hayashi. Photo: Courtesy National LGBTQ Task Force

Kris Hayashi, formerly the executive director of the Oakland-based Transgender Law Center, has been hired for a top position with the National LGBTQ Task Force.

Hayashi, a trans man, is the task force's director of advocacy and action, the organization stated in a news release. The position encompasses the task force's policy, field, and faith teams, the release noted.

"We could not be more excited or honored to welcome Kris Hayashi to our team and the task force family," stated Kierra Johnson, a bisexual Black woman who is the organization's executive director. "Kris will bring immeasurable expertise to our advocacy and policy work as our community, especially our trans and nonbinary siblings, are under unrelenting and unprecedented attacks."

Among other duties, Hayashi is expected to be involved in the task force's Queer the Vote campaign during this election year, Johnson added.

Hayashi stated that he's "honored" to join the task force.

"At a time when trans communities are facing escalating attacks on our rights, lives, and very existence, I am excited to join the National LGBTQ Task Force and support the organization's work to build a queer progressive movement that centers trans power, resistance, and joy," he stated.

He also praised Johnson, who became executive director three years ago, in February 2021.

"Since taking the helm, Executive Director Kierra Johnson has been leading with racial and gender justice, intersectionality, deep integrity, and a clear vision grounded in what is at stake for our communities and the country — I am honored to join her team," he stated.

Hayashi led TLC from early 2015 until stepping down last year. Prior to that, he served as executive director/co-director of the Audre Lorde Project, a lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirit, trans, and gender-nonconforming people of color organizing center based in New York City.

Judicial diversity virtual forum

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and its sister organization, the Leadership Conference Education Fund, will hold a virtual forum about the importance of judicial diversity Thursday, February 15, from 11 a.m. to 12:25 p.m. Pacific time.

A news release noted that the organizations promote judicial diversity — both demographic and professional — by advocating for the appointment of qualified judges who are committed to equal justice. As the Bay Area Reporter noted in its Political Notes column last December, the U.S. Senate has approved only nine out judicial nominees since 2021. (The Senate Judiciary Committee held a confirmation hearing for lesbian attorney Nicole Berner last December; President Joe Biden nominated her for a seat on the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Berner's appointment has not yet been voted on.)

During the forum, Maya Wiley, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference and the Education Fund, will deliver remarks, along with U.S. Senator Alex Padilla (D-California), who serves on the judiciary committee, and Judge Edward Chen of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

A panel discussion will follow with Maya Sen, professor at Harvard University; Matthew Campbell, Native American Rights Fund; and Angel Padilla, National Women's Law Center. Jesselyn McCurdy of the Leadership Conference and the Education Fund will moderate.

To RSVP for the Zoom program, fill out a form here.

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