New York City's first openly transgender firefighter to speak at Rider

Brooke Guinan will headline the 36th annual Gender and Sexuality Studies Colloquium
Rachel Stengel '14

Brooke Guinan, New York City's first openly transgender firefighter, will headline Rider's 36th annual Gender and Sexuality Studies (GSS) Colloquium on Thursday, March 29, at 1:10 p.m. in Sweigart Auditorium, room 115.

Guinan will discuss the challenges of being a third-generation firefighter and a transgender woman. Prior to her address, a screening of the documentary Woman on Fire featuring Guinan will be held on Wednesday, March 28, at 6:15 p.m. also in Sweigart Auditorium. The screening will include a panel discussion with Guinan and Woman on Firedirector Julie Sokolow as well as a reception.

"Each year we search for a speaker who will address some compelling issue related to gender and sexuality, and we look for someone whose story will engage our students," says Dr. Erica Ryan, history professor and director of Rider's Gender and Sexuality Studies Program. "We are thrilled to have Brooke as our keynote speaker this year. Her work as a trans woman in the New York City Fire Department, and as a vocal advocate for LGBTQ rights in and out of her profession, is so inspiring. Salon called Brooke 'a superhero for the 21st century,' and I know our students will learn a lot from her about pushing against the boundaries of society's gender norms and against any other limitations they may come across in life."

The annual GSS Colloquium provides an open, all-day forum to discuss a variety of topics related to gender and sexuality. Sessions begin at 8 a.m. in Sweigart Auditorium on March 29. See the full list of presentations here.

"The GSS Colloquium offers an exceptional opportunity for students from both the Lawrenceville and Princeton campuses to present research, creative projects and papers related to gender and sexuality studies across disciplines," says Ryan.

This year's presentations focus on gender and cultural transformation, media representations of gender, sexuality and society, and historical and literary themes of gender and sexuality.

The film screening and the Gender and Sexuality Studies Colloquium are part of Rider's month-long Women's History Month celebration. Both events are free and open to the public. For more information, please contact Ryan at [email protected].