I believe strongly in leveraging my presentations and trainings so that the audience obtains as much relevant information as possible. To one degree or another (depending on focus), my presentation/training will leave the listener with at least these takeaways:
- Understanding the value of diversity and inclusion based on a message about our commonalities and interconnectedness.
- Understanding that fear is core to the Human Condition and strategies for addressing fear and the need to be more open to people who are “Other” or “different” from “us.”
- Helping to foster a willingness to take risks by communicating with/being empathic toward those who are “Other.”
- Increased understanding of what it means to live life authentically, including the need for compassion–for ourselves and for others.
A direct outcome of my presentation is that listeners will come away with a better awareness of transgender persons in general. Most of the time, audience members feel a greater sense of self-awareness and willingness to self-examine regardless of their sexual or gender identities. Unless I’m training on what it means to be a transgender human or asked to share about my personal story, I do not speak of being transgender (other than to note that my appearance does not match my voice). In particular, my inclusivity training is human-focused and not at all about me. After all, humans group and label everyone who is “different” from “us”– and not simply transgender people.
I’m also told that I inspire people to want to change the way they perceive and interact with others. I think this comes from audience members seeing that I am passionate about this work and understanding that I live my life authentically and with gratitude. Or so I think that’s what they see…
The following “Tracks” are representative of my presentations and trainings:
Educational: “‘Transgender 101:’ Understanding What it Means to be Transgender.” Synopsis: this mainstay presentation covers the basics of what it means to be transgender and offers advice/tips on how to welcome and accept transgender persons. The talk also includes me sharing about my story. A full description of the talk can be found here.
Diversity and Inclusion: “Gray Area Thinking®“. Synopsis: this very popular diversity and inclusion presentation provides a toolset (“Gray Area Thinking”™) for how to interact with others who are “different” from “us.” A full description of the training can be found here.
“Getting Past the Bumpiness: White Fragility and Skin Color.” Synopsis: this brand new training for 2020 covers the historical and institutional forces that have worked to marginalize humans with skin colors other than the white color. The training includes understanding how prejudice differs from discrimination and how it is important to understand background data relative to disparities. There are two versions of the training–Introductory and Deep Dive. A full description of the training can be found here.
“Workplace Inclusivity and Allyship 101.” Synopsis: this training dives deep into the various degrees of organizational inclusivity and ways of engaging in “allyship” (the action part of being an ally). A description of that training can be found here.
“The C* Project: Courageous Conversations about Diversity and Inclusion in the Greater Midwest.” A description of this diversity and inclusion presentation can be found at another tab on this website.
Enrichment: “Getting to Ellen: Gleaning Authenticity from a Moment of Truth.” Synopsis: this well-received motivational/inspirational presentation is part my story, part discussion about barriers to self-discovery and authenticity that all humans encounter because all of us lack an “owner’s manual.” A full description of the talk can be found here.
Keynotes: “Bridging Divides: Remembering Grit, Resiliency and the Four Commonalities.” Synopsis: this is a very popular keynote that I’ve presented to audiences as large as 3000 persons. The talk centers on our “internal divides” and how they fuel the “external divides” that plague America today. This isn’t a political talk, but rather seeks to remind audience members that truly, there is only “Us” all attempting to survive the Human Condition. The talk involves a voluntary audience participation exercise to demonstrate that in one way or another, almost everyone has been made to feel they’re “Other.” A description of the talk can be found here.
I am happy to collaborate with program coordinators to tailor specific presentations for applicable events. If desired, I can provide preparation surveys, consulting on how to make an organization more inclusive, post-presentation evaluations, workshops, trial practice programs, and application for CLE credit (if appropriate). If you desire anything specific, please include that in your initial request. Most of all, I want a win-win where my presentation or training works for you, your team members and for me. I do not disappoint.
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