Last night at the GLAAD Gala in San Francisco, journalist Monica Roberts was given a special recognition for her work on TransGriot, her seminal blog now celebrating a decade of bringing news and commentary from a trans woman of color perspective.
Accepting the honor from HerStory star Angelica Ross, Roberts spoke about amplifying the voices of those who have been unheard.
When the blogosphere exploded in the early 2000s, she says, "trans-oriented blogs addressing the issues germane to the trans community existed, but [none] were discussing issues important to trans people of color. Neither were they discussing trans issues and the news of the day from our perspective."
TransGriot not only filled that gap, it began a narrative that other blogs (including this one) have been able to plug into. And as the cultural conversation in America has expanded, so has Roberts' coverage.
"While what I write at TransGriot is focused on and for black trans people, over time those posts have also touched people around the world... It has also grown beyond its original mission to talk about the issues that affect all LGBTQ people."
But it's not just about words for Roberts, who lamented having to report on "far too many murders of trans women of color."
"It’s even more potent when you walk the walk and back up your words with deeds," she told the audience at the gala, where Hannah Hart and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff were also honored.
"I get up from behind my keyboard and lobby legislators, educating people at panel discussions and community forums, and engage in public speaking in order to make that positive change I advocate for via my writing happen."
Whether it's celebrating victories or addressing anti-trans violence and discrimination, TransGriot has always underscored Roberts' three core messages: "That LGBTQ rights are international human rights, that we trans people exist and are part of the diverse mosaic of human life, and that we will not be dehumanized or disrespected by friend, foe or frenemy."
Congratulations, Monica, and here's to many more years of award-winning journalism.
Below, more images from the 2016 GLAAD Gala in San Francisco.
Host Aisha Tyler
Honoree Hannah Hart and Mamrie Hart
Bozoma Saint John
GLAAD president Sarah Kate Ellis
Honoree Marc Benioff of Salesforce
Mary Lambert performed at the GLAAD Gala
Gigi Gorgeous and Nats Getty
Below, Lilly Wachowski accepts an award for Sense8 at the 2016 GLAAD Media Awards in April.