MTPC’s former co-chair: Openly transgender woman to be appointed NHRC

Holly Ryan Photo by Kristin Laurel Caffray

Boston, MA – The Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition is pleased to announce that Holly Ryan, a former chair of MTPC, has been appointed to the Newton Human Rights Commission by Mayor Setti Warren. Ms. Ryan was approved by the full board of Aldermen on February 21, 2012 and her term is for three years. Ms. Ryan is a life-long resident of Newton and product of the Newton School System, as was her 23-year-old daughter and her 16-year-old son who presently attends Newton South High School.

“This is an important step for the transgender community to have openly identified transgender woman appointed to a city commission. This shows that society is changing and because of that, we all benefit when citizen’s like Ms. Ryan are given the opportunity to participate in her community this way,” said Gunner Scott, executive director.

In her professional capacity, she is the Director of Purchasing and Food Service for the Middlesex Human Service Agency, a non-profit multi service organization caring for the homeless and helping those with substance abuse located in Waltham.  She has been with the agency for 16 years and transitioned on the job early in her career.

Ms. Ryan served as a chair of the MTPC steering committee from 2005 until 2008 and has been an advocate, trainer and consultant for the Boston area transgender community for the past twenty years. Ms. Ryan’ work includes having been a consultant and trainer for the Trans Health and Education Development Program of JRI Health in 2000, a current member of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s Bureau of Substance Abuse Services LGBTQ Advisory Board, a board member of Bay State Stonewall Democrats, and an elected member of the Massachusetts Democratic State Committee.

“This will give me another opportunity to be engaged with my neighbors on issues of diversity in my city and to also be able to educate my community on the issues transgender people face,” said Holly Ryan.

The Newton Human Rights Commission (HRC) was established by the City of Newton to assure mutual understanding and respect among all persons in the City by promoting acceptance of diversity and combating discrimination. This volunteer board, whose members are appointed by the mayor, identifies and addresses issues of prejudice within the City and organizes programs for community education on human rights matters.

Founded in 2001, the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) is a 501(c) 3 that works to end discrimination on the basis of gender identity and gender expression. MTPC educates the public, advocates with state, local, and federal government, engages in political activism, and encourages empowerment of community members through collective action.

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