Cecilia Chung
   HOME

TheInfoList



Cecilia Chung ( zh, 鍾紹琪) is a
civil rights Civil and political rights are a class of rights Rights are law, legal, social, or ethics, ethical principles of Liberty, freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of people or owed to ...
leader and activist for
LGBT rights Rights affecting lesbian A lesbian is a Homosexuality, homosexual woman.Zimmerman, p. 453. The word ''lesbian'' is also used for women in relation to their sexual identity or sexual behavior, regardless of sexual orientation, or a ...
,
HIV/AIDS Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection An infection is the invasion of an organism's body by , their multiplication, and the reaction of ...
awareness, health advocacy, and
social justice Social justice is justice in terms of the distribution of wealth Wealth is the abundance of Value (economics), valuable financial assets or property, physical possessions which can be converted into a form that can be used for financial tran ...
. She is a
trans woman A trans woman is a woman who was assigned male at birth. Trans women have a female gender identity, may experience gender dysphoria, and may Gender transitioning, transition; this process commonly includes Feminizing hormone therapy, hormone re ...
, and her life story was one of four main storylines in the 2017 ABC miniseries ''
When We Rise ''When We Rise'' is an eight-part American docudrama miniseries about the history of LGBT rights advocacy in the United States from the 1970s to the 2010s. It was created by Dustin Lance Black and stars Guy Pearce, Rachel Griffiths, Mary-Louise Pa ...
'' about LGBT rights in the 1970s and 1980s.


Early life

Cecilia was born in
Hong Kong Hong Kong (; , ), officially the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (HKSAR), is a and of China on the eastern in . With over 7.5 million residents of various nationalities in a territory, Hong ...

Hong Kong
in 1965 and later immigrated to
Los Angeles Los Angeles ( ; xgf, Tovaangar; es, Los Ángeles, , ), commonly referred to by the L.A., is the in . With a 2020 population of 3,898,747, it is the in the , following . Los Angeles is known for its , ethnic and cultural diversity, a ...

Los Angeles
with her family in 1984. A year later, she moved to
San Francisco San Francisco (/Help:IPA/English, ˌsæn fɹənˈsɪskoʊ/; Spanish language, Spanish for "Francis of Assisi, Saint Francis"), officially the City and County of San Francisco, is a cultural, commercial, and financial center in Northern Calif ...

San Francisco
to attend
City College of San Francisco A city is a large human settlement In geography, statistics and archaeology, a settlement, locality or populated place is a community in which people live. The complexity of a settlement can range from a small number of dwellings grouped to ...
before transferring to
Golden Gate University Golden Gate University (GGU or Golden Gate) is a private, non-profit university in San Francisco, California. Founded in 1901, GGU specializes in educating professionals through its schools of law, business, taxation, and accounting. The univers ...

Golden Gate University
in 1987 with a degree in international management. Afterwards, she spent a few years working as a court interpreter for
Santa Clara County Santa Clara County, officially the County of Santa Clara, is California California is a U.S. state, state in the Western United States. With over 39.3million residents across a total area of approximately , it is the List of states and terri ...
and a sales trainer at a financial company.


Activism

Cecilia has spent much of her adult life advocating for health-related issues affecting the LGBT community, including working as an HIV test counselor at UCSF AIDS Health Project, HIV Program Coordinator at API American Health Forum, and Deputy Director at the
Transgender Law Center The Transgender Law Center (TLC) is the largest American transgender-led civil rights organization in the United States. They were originally California's first "fully staffed, state-wide transgender legal organization" and were initially a fisca ...
. Additionally, Cecilia is the first transgender woman and first Asian to be elected to lead the
board of directors A board of directors is a group of people who jointly supervise the activities of an organization An organization, or organisation (English in the Commonwealth of Nations, Commonwealth English; American and British English spelling diffe ...
of the San Francisco Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Celebration and the first transgender woman and the first person living openly with HIV to chair the
San Francisco Human Rights Commission The San Francisco Human Rights Commission (HRC) is a charter commission of the City and County of San Francisco that works to increase equality, eradicate discrimination, and to protect human rights for all people. The HRC enforces City Ordinance ...
. Cecilia founded San Francisco Transgender Advocacy and Mentorship (SF TEAM) to provide events for the transgender community through the
San Francisco LGBT Community Center The SF LGBT Center is a nonprofit organization serving the lesbian, gay, bisexuality, bisexual, transgender, and queer community of San Francisco, California, and nearby communities, located at 1800 Market Street (San Francisco), Market Street in S ...
. She is also one of the founders of the annual Trans March. In 2013, Cecilia was appointed to the Health Commission by Mayor Edward Lee. She made headlines for making San Francisco the first city in the United States to pay for gender reassignment surgery for uninsured transgender patients. Through her appointment, she was also able to train San Francisco Department of Public Health staff members about transgender issues in programming called “Transgender 101”. For the International AIDS Society, 2014 AIDS Conference, Cecilia published an article titled "HIV: a call for solidarity with the transgender community," in which she shared a personal encounter with police abuse and emphasized the importance of inclusivity and unity within the trans women community. Currently, Cecilia is a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS, the current chair of US PLHIV Caucus, and the Senior Director of Strategic Projects at the
Transgender Law Center The Transgender Law Center (TLC) is the largest American transgender-led civil rights organization in the United States. They were originally California's first "fully staffed, state-wide transgender legal organization" and were initially a fisca ...
.


Personal life

In 1992, Cecilia decided to transition. She became estranged from her family due to their lack of understanding about her being transgender. She also had to resign from her sales trainer job to facilitate the process. She relied on her court interpreter job as her sole source of income, but her employment contract was soon terminated after a judge noticed her physical changes due to transition. She eventually ended up homelessness, living on the streets and had to resort to sex work for livelihood, which subjected her to sexual and physical violence. She also turned to drugs for self-medication. In the same year, she was diagnosed as HIV positive. In 1995, almost 3 years after becoming homeless, Cecilia was stabbed during a sexual assault attempt and taken to the emergency room. Her mother, who was the emergency contact, came to the hospital for a visit and the two reconciled. Since then, Cecilia completed her gender reassignment surgery in Bangkok in 1998.


Honors and awards

* Transgender Discrimination Task Force in 1994 * 1998: San Francisco Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Pride Celebration Committee * 2001: First Asian and first transgender woman elected to SF LGBT Pride Celebration Committee Board President * 2001: Asian & Pacific Islander Wellness Center Board of Directors *2011: Civil Rights Enforcement Working Group * 2012: Received the Levi Strauss & Co. Pioneer Award. * 2013: Appointed to the Health Commission by Mayor Lee * 2019: Commended by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors during Transgender Awareness Week * San Francisco AIDS Foundation Cleve Jones Award * Human Rights Campaign Community Service Award * California Woman of The Year * Out and Equal Champion of the Year Award * 2020: NAAAP100 Award


Other

Ivory Aquino plays Cecilia in the miniseries about LGBT rights called ''
When We Rise ''When We Rise'' is an eight-part American docudrama miniseries about the history of LGBT rights advocacy in the United States from the 1970s to the 2010s. It was created by Dustin Lance Black and stars Guy Pearce, Rachel Griffiths, Mary-Louise Pa ...
''.


References


External links

* {{DEFAULTSORT:Chung, Cecilia 1965 births Living people American people of Hong Kong descent HIV/AIDS activists LGBT American people of Asian descent LGBT rights activists from the United States LGBT people from California LGBT people from Hong Kong People from San Francisco People with HIV/AIDS Transgender and transsexual women Transgender rights activists Golden Gate University alumni 21st-century LGBT people