No Love Like QTPOC Love–Been T/Here!



How do trans people of color thrive? Join Chicagoans on their journeys to find love, creativity, and healing.

Synopsis: America may be discovering trans people, but we’ve been here all along. Peel back the hype to share genuine moments with a nerdy immigrant, a kinky organizer, a catholic punk, and more. How did you find love? What inspires you? What keeps you going? Join us on our journeys, and you may even find that you’ve Been There too.

Starring: Mama Gloria, Darling Shear, NIC Kay, Karari Olvera, E Armea, Crispins Torres, Nina Chaubal

Been T/Here: Riot Grrrl Heart

Can wearing a suit be punk rock? A riot grrrl at heart, Crispin Torres contemplates his journey to navigate his catholic faith and how he eventually found love in a bandmate.

Been T/Here: Lessons Learned

Known as Mama in the gayborhood, Gloria Allen shares a few of the lessons she learned from her own beauty-queen-of-a mother and from a tumultuous twenty year relationship with a man on the down low.

Been T/Here: Suddenly, It All Changed

E Armea builds architectural models in the day and community at night. Having sworn off dating white people years ago, he finds love where he least expects and is changed by the experience.

Watch Been T/Here now FOR FREE on OpenTV.

Lives on the Line: Trans Suicide Interviews



Z Shane Zaldivar is a former Marine who has been living, working, and community organizing in North Carolina for years. He’s been an activist for 15 years in various locations throughout the South, and he’s been working with the Trans Lifeline for almost a year. André Pérez, founder of the Trans Oral History Project and Trans Lifeline Director of Marketing and Communications sat down for a conversation with Z to get the behind-the-scenes scoop. Read more here.

National Tour!

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We need your help to bring powerful stories and discussions to Colleges in 2016 & 2017 

Everything going on in NC and across the South illustrates how crucial it is to have solidarity with one another across geographic and community boundaries. After growing up in NC and VA, I arrived at college in the North with a drawl. I quickly unlearned it after confronting the assumption that I was dumb. Trans people from marginal communities often give up little pieces of who we are, internalizing others’ judgements or just trying to survive in a world that doesn’t value our culture. We can work together to push forward a national conversation that acknowledges and celebrates who we each are.

Each America in Transition episode explores one person’s story in depth tackling issues such as HIV criminalization in Arkansas, Black trans masculine (in)visibility in the media, and the impact of colonialism on two-spirit identities.

We offer customized screenings, workshops, and lectures to a variety of audiences including Film, Public Humanities, Multicultural Student Affairs, Latino Studies and more to bring intersectional programming to colleges and Universities across the country.

Learn more or pass along our Press Kit here.

Top 5 Moments of 2015

Trans Oral History Project Year End Review


1) Miss Major’s Response to StonewallScreen Shot 2015-12-17 at 11.38.26 AM

In 2014, we were honored to interview stonewall riot veteran, Miss Major. In 2015, we re-released her video in response to the movie Stonewall.

It received 10,000 views as trans folks stood up at the theaters across the country to tell Hollywood that we don’t want their white-washed, gay-washed manipulation of history.

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2) New Chicago Collective Members

Karari Olvera is the femme genderqueer first-born of Mexican immigrant parents. A writer, makeup enthusiast, and arguably the best wingperson you’ll ever need, Karari serves in the leadership of United Latin@ Pride and the Chicago chapter of the TransLatin@ Coalition.


Screen Shot 2015-12-18 at 2.55.36 PMAidan McCormack is a writer, facilitator, public speaker, beloved community nurturer, and geek. The first trans person to graduate from their seminary, Aidan is genderfantastic. They curate St. Sparklebear, a performance and art project focusing on joyful anti-oppression, self-care, and learning to love one’s self in order to love and change the world.



3) We Began Planning a National Docu Web Series

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 4.43.16 PMAmerica in Transition (AIT) is a web series that explores what change really looks like from the perspective of trans people of color and rural trans folks.

TOHP Founder, André Pérez, is recording a his journey across the country to document real life for an undocumented former detainee, a two spirit educator, a suicidal veteran, and more. Tune into the behind-the-scenes series on youtube as he travels & shoots AIT in 2016.



4) Defiant Archives Takes Over Philadelphia City Hall

2015 was the 50th anniversary of the Reminder Day Protests where Lesbian and Gay folks fought for their right to exist. Organizations across Philadelphia worked to create history exhibits in commemoration.

We worked alongside a team of curators to showcase the history of trans activism in Philly at the William Way Center in an exhibit called Defiant Archives. The exhibit was dedicated to the memory of Charlene Arcila-Ecks, a longtime Philly activist and community member who passed last spring.

The exhibit was so successful that it was moved to the gallery outside Mayor Nutter’s office in Philadelphia City Hall where hundreds of people learned about generations of existence and resistance in Philadelphia.

5) Our First Workshop in Spanish!

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 11.52.24 AMWe translated I Live for Trans Education, our youth tooklit, into spanish. We debuted the workshop at the Latino Institute of Creating Change in Denver, CO. Download the spanish version of the toolkit here.


We need your help to share more trans stories in 2015!

Click here to donate today.

Behind The Scenes Ep1

2015 is heralded as the tipping point for transgender people in US. America in Transition is a web series that explores what change really looks like from the perspective of trans people of color and rural trans folks. Follow this channel to get updates from Trans Oral History Project Founder and America in Transition Director, André Pérez, on his journey across the country to document real life for trans people in 2015.

Trans-led Web Series Needs Your Help!

We are launching America in Transition (AIT), which will highlight social issues and positive role models from underrepresented trans communities across the US.

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“America in Transition is inspired by my experience coming out and seeking community as a youth in rural Vermont. I had questions about everything from health care access to navigating familial relationships, but no one to ask,” says TOHP founder and AIT Director Andre Perez, “Without role models or institutional support, I felt like I had to come to Chicago to find myself. AIT is working towards a world where people feel like they don’t have to leave their communities to be who they are.”

Media frames our culture and shapes our understanding. Mainstream media portrayals of the trans community has come so far in such a short time, with examples like Janet Mock on MSNBC, or shows like “I am Cait,” and “Becoming Us” among others. However, that media attention still leaves many trans folks invisible–people of color, poor people, people of faith, people with disabilities, and immigrants.

“Families and communities continue to reject trans folks, which fuels alarming rates of suicide, homelessness, and violence,” Pérez continues, “Trans people and advocates desperately need culturally relevant tools, to build understanding and acceptance.” According to Injustice at Every Turn, a report issued by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Trans Equality in 2011, over 50% of trans people have experienced discrimination in housing or on the job, 60% have experienced bullying in schools, 59% have survived violence due to their identity, and 41% of trans people have reported attempting suicide (compared to 1.6% of the general population).

The first season of AIT will feature six people in different places across the country, highlighting how a person’s environment impacts their experience of being transgender. It will answer key questions: How did your hometown shape you? What is the most important relationship in your life? Where do you belong now?

AIT is more than a series, it is a platform for change that will be interactive online and in real life. Stay tuned for web applications, educational material, and live community events.

Building relationships within and between communities is central to AIT’s model. Perez started working towards AIT ten months ago by establishing a Community Advisory Board, recruiting Media Mentors, and forging partnerships with more than 30 organizations around the country such as Disability Visibility, Lambda Legal, Medium, Trans Lifeline, and United Latino Pride.

AIT is launching its first mytransstory_55df59fb029be (1) (1)fundraiser ever via an indiegogo campaign for $5,000 ($10,000 stretch goal). Proceeds will pay to travel and shoot the first three episodes. If you believe trans people belong anywhere they are and anywhere they want to be, then make your tax-deductible donation today!

AIT is working with Jess Oros, the web developer who brought you the trans pride filter, in order launch a custom filter for trans community members. If you are trans and feel like stories like your are left out of the mainstream media, then help us bring an intersectional perspective into the national conversation. You can write in the communities and identities that shape you, and show others what is missing from the frame by applying our new #MyTransStory filter to your social media profile pictures.

Defiant Archives Exhibit in Philly


Defiant Archives: Trans Histories of Existence, Resistance, and Brilliance” shares a collection of archival and personal items with a focus on the history of transgender activism in Philadelphia, curated and collected by local trans community members. Visitors will be able to watch a collection of oral history videos shared by the Trans Oral History Project, as well as the short documentary video “Transpass” about the work of Riders Against Gender Exclusion, a local activist group who won the fight to end SEPTA’s use of gendered stickers in 2013. The exhibit will also invite participation, as visitors are welcomed to share their own histories on a timeline stretching from 1965 to 2015.

July 24-September 20
MON – FRI 11am – 10pm
SAT – SUN 12pm – 5pm
1315 Spruce St. Philadelphia, PA 19107

The Defiant Archives exhibit responds to a missing piece in the Reminder 2015 celebration. Before, during, and after the Annual Reminder Day protests (1965-69) leaders demanded gender conformity from participants. Transgender and gender nonconforming activists have mobilized for sexual and gender self-determination, social transformation, and collective liberation.

The exhibit is dedicated to the memory of Charlene Arcila-Ecks.