To our NTBA Community:

We are a warm and welcoming community. We are resilient and resourceful. Our allies stand by our side. These are the takeaways from this past weekend’s NTBA Board Retreat and the associated Trans Movement Mingle.

At our Board Retreat, we discussed our organizational history. We’d like to thank Jillian Weiss, Alex Chen, and Kristen Browde for sharing about the respective threads that they helped weave together to form the bar that we are today. Jillian, in particular, reminded us that while we may be in the one-step-back phase of two-steps-forward-one-back, we’re still netting one step forward relative to the recent past. With these reminders and the strong encouragement of all three, we then set our agenda and coordinated our calendar for the upcoming year.

This year, the NTBA will serve as a platform supporting its member lawyers working to roll back the effects of the 2023 legislative session. The NTBA will also continue to make spaces for trans and non-binary lawyers to connect and learn from each other. We look forward to seeing you at one or more of our socials and mentoring events, at the Trans Law Institute during the LGBTQ+ Bar’s Lavender Law Conference, or at our SCOTUS swearing in ceremony.

The Board then formalized the NTBA’s Committees, which are presently the following:

The Mentorship Committee runs NTBA’s mentorship program by matching law students and newly minted lawyers with more seasoned members of the trans and gender nonconforming legal community. The Committee also develops programming and resources to help support mentor-mentee relationships. Its mission is to foster rewarding professional and personal connections within the trans bar.

The Public Education Committee will seek to bring factual information to the public on trans legal issues.

The Communications Committee is in charge of reviewing and proposing materials for the newsletter and helping to ensure that social media and other communications are up to date.

The Amicus Committee will oversee the NTBA’s amicus activities.

The Governance Committee handles NTBA governance matters as they arise.

The Membership Committee promotes engagement with the NTBA membership.

The Trans Law Institute Committee plans the annual Trans Law Institute that takes place during the National LGBTQ Bar’s Lavender Law Conference (do not forget to sign up!).

Each of these committees, though run by Board members, is open to NTBA Member participation. If you’re interested in helping with one of these committees, please do not hesitate to reach out. There are plenty of ways to get involved, and we’d love to have you join us!

After our Retreat, the board members attending live joined law students, attorneys, and activists from the Bay Area for the Trans Movement Mingle. Our gracious host, the East Bay Community Law Center, set the tone by allowing us to convene in their beautiful Berkeley space. We spent the evening sharing resources and being in community with one another. It is always amazing to see neighbors meet each other for the first time at events like these. And the energy we create together is powerful and helps us each keep doing what we do. In honor of our commitment to spreading trans joy, here’s a photo of the group:
With many 2023 legislative sessions closing across the country, we now have time to survey the results of this crescendo of moral panic around trans and non-binary people.  We have, unfortunately, a lot of work to do.  But rest assured – that work is happening and these laws will continue to be enjoined and rescinded.  The NTBA will continue to support its members as they do this important work.  Fortunately, the response has not been uniformly negative.  A number of legislatures passed laws protecting trans and non-binary people.  The NTBA will continue to support its members as they advocate for these positive measures.  

Events like the Trans Movement Mingle help us keep these challenges in perspective.  We’re stronger together, and keeping each other close rejuvenates us all.  Don’t hesitate to join us at our next event near you! 

In solidarity,

D Dangaran and Rafael Langer-Osuna,
Co-Chairs for the NTBA Board