LGBTQ Conference at Harvard
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LGBTQ Conference at Harvard

Conference History


The LGBTQ Conference at Harvard began in 2014 as a collaboration between graduate students at Harvard Business School and Harvard Kennedy School of Government. From the outset, the conference worked to connect LGBTQ students, faculty, staff, and allies across all of Harvard's schools.

As the conference has grown, so has its scope. Each year, a committee of Harvard graduate students work together to craft a resonant theme and invite speakers from across the country. This entirely volunteer effort, which operates without dedicated University staff or faculty support, is the University's largest LGBTQ-focused event each year. 

We are grateful for the University staff and faculty members who lend portions of their time outside of their official roles to support the conference. We are particularly thankful for our sponsors, without whom this conference would not be possible.


2019 Theme: Partners in Justice and Equity


2019 Keynote Speakers:

Aaron Morris, Director, Immigration Equality

Aisha Moodie-Mills, Immediate Past-President and CEO, LGBTQ Victory Fund


2019 Steering Committee:

Jen Fine, Harvard Law School

Charlene Lerner, Harvard Law School

Andrew An Westover, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences/Harvard Graduate School of Education


2019 Committee Members:

Jonathan Cohen, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

Alejandro Garcia Fernandez, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences/Harvard Graduate School of Education

Eve Howe, Harvard Law School

Sarah Kalinowski, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Shirley Li, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Casey Orozco-Poore, Harvard Medical School

Joe Pinto, Harvard Divinity School

Mary Beth Spang, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Roland Yang, Harvard Business School


2018 Theme: Resilience Through Love and Resistance


2018 Keynote Speakers:

The Honorable Mary I. Yu, Washington Supreme Court

Travon Free, Comedian, Writer, and Producer


2018 Steering Committee:

Jerry Liu, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

Aki Terasaki, Harvard Business School

Jianing Xie, Harvard Law School


2018 Committee Members:

David Baiz, Harvard Graduate School of Education 

Haley Curtin, Harvard College

Jen Fine, Harvard Law School

Adrian Lee, Harvard Law School

Charlene Lerner, Harvard Law School

AJ Pascua, Harvard Business School

Ke Wang, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

Andrew Westover, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences/Harvard Graduate School of Education

Roland Yang, Harvard Business School


2017 Theme: A Call to Action: Activism, Agency, and Alliances for a Changing Globe


2017 Keynote Speakers:

The Honorable Mark Takano, U.S. Representative for the 41st District of California

Mara Keisling, Executive Director, National Center for Transgender Equality


2017 Steering Committee:

Andrew Cone, Harvard Business School

Aki Terasaki, Harvard Business School

Julianne (Julie) Thomsen, Harvard Law School

Alvin Tran, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Aaron Wiltse, Harvard Law School


2017 Committee Members:

Jacob (Jake) Barrera, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Aaron Bos-Lun, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Hashim Kaleem, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Suresh Pavuluri, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Vic Quintanar, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Ewelina Rudnicka, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

Ben Schneider, Harvard Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Daniel Selgrade, Harvard Medical School

Michael Thornton, Harvard Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Jianing Xie, Harvard Law School

Tarek Zeidan, Harvard Kennedy School of Government


2016 Conference Theme: Beyond Marriage Equality: Rainbows at the Crossroads


 2016 Keynote Speakers:

Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, first openly transgender White House appointee (Obama Administration)

Robyn Ocks, activist and educator 

Janson Wu, Executive Director of GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders 


 2015 Conference Theme: Unified by our Diversity: Solidarity Within and Beyond the LGBTQ Community


 2015 Keynote Speakers: 

Paula Boggs, former Starbucks General Counsel and Obama Administration appointee

Jonathan Capehart, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist at the Washington Post and MSNBC


2014 Conference: Inaugural LGBTQ Conference at Harvard


  2014 Keynote Speakers:

Caitlin Cahow, Women’s Ice Hockey Olympic Medalist 

Ken Mehlman, President George W. Bush’s 2004 campaign manager and a former chairman of the Republican National Committee

Brian Rolfes, Partner and Head of Global Recruiting at McKinsey & Co.


 2014 Steering Committee: 

AJ Lee, Harvard Kennedy School 

Ana Mendy, Harvard Business School 

Ma’ayan Anafi, Harvard Law School 


We are still building this portion of our site as a living archive. If you have information about the conference's early years, please email lgbtqconf@gmail.com with details so that we can preserve this conference's history! 


 

LGBTQ Conference Past Schedules

 

2018 Conference schedule

Friday, March 2nd, 2018


4:30 PM - 6:45 PM

 

Mr. Gay Syria: Film Screening

SPERRY ROOM, ANDOVER HALL, HARVARD DIVINITY SCHOOL
45 FRANCIS AVE, CAMBRIDG


6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Women, Trans, and Non-Binary Happy Hour

HARVARD LAW SCHOOL, MILSTEIN WEST AB
1585 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, CAMBRIDGE


7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Open Happy Hour

HARVARD LAW SCHOOL, MILSTEIN WEST AB
1585 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, CAMBRIDGE


8:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Vogue-ology Workshop by Michael Roberson, UltraRed

HARVARD LAW SCHOOL, MILSTEIN WEST AB
1585 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, CAMBRIDGe


10:45 pm - Late

Guerilla Queer Bar (Co-Sponsored by The Welcoming Committee and Harvard GSE Alumni of Color Conference)

Hong Kong,

1238 Massachusetts Ave, cambridge, MA 02138

Separate admission: $6 cover by card; $5 by cash (discounted)


Saturday, March 3rd, 2018


9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Registration

Austin hall, 1515 Massachusetts avenue


10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

Welcome Remarks

Ames courtroom, austin hall


10:45 AM - 11:45 AM

Keynote Address

Ames courtroom, austin hall

Travon Free | Comedian, Writer, and Producer


11:45 AM - 12:00 PM

Break


12:00 PM - 1:15 PM

Keynote Panel: LGBTQ Leadersship: Cultivating Resilience Across Communities

AMES COURTROOM, AUSTIN HALL

MODERATOR: ARTHUR LIPKIN, CONSULTANT, MA SAFE SCHOOLS FOR LGBTQ STUDENTS PROGRAM

EXPERTS: 
MICHAEL ADAMS, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, SAGE
SAM DORISON, CHIEF OF STAFF, TREVOR PROJECT 
JILLIAN WEISS, FORMER EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, TRANSGENDER LEGAL DEFENSE AND EDUCATION FUND


1:15 PM - 2:30 PM

Lunch


2:30 PM - 3:45 PM

 

Excavating the Past: Illuminating LGBTQ Stories

Austin EAST

MODERATOR: JOAN ILACQUA, THE HISTORY PROJECT: DOCUMENTING LGBTQ BOSTON

GONZALO CASALS, DIRECTOR, LESLIE-LOHMAN MUSEUM OF GAY AND LESBIAN ART
K.J. RAWSON, DIRECTOR, DIGITAL TRANSGENDER ARCHIVE; ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, COLLEGE OF THE HOLY CROSS
MATTHEW RIEMER & LEIGHTON BROWN, CO-FOUNDERS, @LGBT_HISTORY

Bridging Communities: Faith-Based Leadership

Austin North

MODERATOR: REV. CODY J. SANDERS, PH.D., PASTOR, OLD CAMBRIDGE BAPTIST CHURCH

RABBI STEVEN GREENBERG, FOUNDING DIRECTOR, ESHEL
DR. ROBYN HENDERSON-ESPINOZA, DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC THEOLOGY INITIATIVES, FAITH MATTERS NETWORK; VISITING SCHOLAR, VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY DIVINITY SCHOOL
N. AHMAD KHAN, CO-FOUNDER, QUEER MUSLIMS OF BOSTON

 

LGBTQ Education: Towards Transformative Inclusion

Austin west

MODERATOR: GRETCHEN BRION-MEISELS, LECTURER ON EDUCATION, HARVARD GRADUATE SCHOOL OF EDUCATION

JARED FOX, LGBTQ LIAISON, NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
ESTEFANIA RODRIGUEZ, K-8 DISTRICT HISTORY INSTRUCTIONAL COACH, CAMBRIDGE PUBLIC SCHOOLS
DR. ASA SEVELIUS, PRINCIPAL, HEATH HIGH SCHOOL, BROOKLINE, MA
TIM’M T. WEST, SENIOR MANAGING DIRECTOR, LGBTQ COMMUNITY INITIATIVE, TEACH FOR AMERICA


3:45 PM - 4:00 PM

Break


4:00 PM - 5:15 PM

 

Creating Narratives for Ourselves and Others

austin north

MODERATOR: JENNIFER DECLUE, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, SMITH COLLEGE

BIG DIPPER, RECORDING ARTIST/PERFORMER
JEFF CHU, JOURNALIST, ESSAYIST, AND AUTHOR
L. FRANK, TONGVA/AJACHMEM ARTIST, WRITER, AND TRIBAL ACTIVIST
OUR LADY J, WRITER, PRODUCER, AND MUSICIAN

Out in the Workplace: Progress and Challenges in Building Inclusive Organizations

AUSTIN EAST

MODERATOR: JESSICA HALEM, LGBT PROGRAM DIRECTOR, HARVARD MEDICAL SCHOOL

SELISSE BERRY, FOUNDER & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, OUT AND EQUAL WORKPLACE ADVOCATES
SOFÍA BONNET HOLLIS, GLOBAL DIVERSITY EXECUTIVE, IBM
TIMOTHY MCCARTHY, CORE FACULTY AND PROGRAM DIRECTOR, CARR CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS POLICY
KENDRA THOMAS, VP HEAD OF GLOBAL DIVERSITY & INCLUSION, PEARSON

Politics in the Age of Resistance: LGBTQ Movements in 2018

Ames courtroom

MODERATOR: CJ CROWDER, MANAGER OF ALUMNI AFFAIRS, TEACH FOR AMERICA AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS, HISPANIC BLACK GAY COALITION

KENYON FARROW, WRITER AND ACTIVIST, THEBODY.COM
SUE HYDE, DIRECTOR, CREATING CHANGE CONFERENCE, NATIONAL LGBTQ TASK FORCE
DENISE SIMMONS, CAMBRIDGE CITY COUNCIL

Queer Media Voices

austin west

MODERATOR: STEPHANIE BURT, PROFESSOR OF ENGLISH, HARVARD UNIVERSITYCJ

SASHA COSTANZA-CHOCK, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF CIVIC MEDIA, MIT
MEREDITH TALUSAN, SENIOR EDITOR, THEM
FRAN TIRADO, EXECUTIVE EDITOR, HELLO MR.; CO-HOST, FOOD 4 THOT


5:15 PM - 5:30 PM

Break


5:30 PM - 6:30 PM

Closing Keynote Address:

Ames courtroom, austin hall

HONORABLE MARY I. YU, | WASHINGTON SUPREME COURT


6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Closing Reception

austin Hall