1.For people who don’t already know you, please share a little about yourself, your work, and/or your activism.
My name is Marlow White, I’m 52 and the proud father to 4 daughters ages 18, 17, 15 and 4. I’m also the Founder and Executive Director of Under Our Umbrella. Inc. (“UOU”) Under Our Umbrella began informally in 2014. UOU was officially formed on May 13, 2015 as a not-for-profit organization.
UOU’s first programming was The Women’s Empowerment Meet and Greet (WEMG) which began in November 2014 and has met once a month ever since. The WEMG connects CIS-gendered women with women of Trans experience and provides a forum for participants to connect with and empower each other through mediation, open discussion, shared meals, and other activities such as game night, vision boarding night, outings and 5 socials events throughout the year.
I have always been a person of service since a child and was introduced to activism in 2000 and have been a steady activist since; I’m currently active in my community through community organizing, participating in protests and rallies in and out of NYC. I’ve fought together with Housing Works Inc. against transphobia, homophobia, homelessness and poverty. Fighting for Tran’s rights, gay rights and the rights of people affected by HIV & AIDS.
I was featured in the Advocate (in 2007 & 2015), Huffington Post (2015). I was and am humbled and honored to have been recognized by Black Trans Men International (BTMI) for Community Leadership in (2015). I assisted in planning and presenting for City Wide Harm Reduction which is now called Boom! Health at the first Trans Health Conference in the Bronx at Lincoln Hospital and I’m proud to have been of influence and establishing the first Trans Day of Remembrance Vigil at CitiWide Harm Reduction in 2010, which is now called Boom! Health at a time when my colleagues and most participants were just beginning to hear the term transgender.
I have been and still am the Harlem representative for The Harlem and Bronx LGBT Task Force. I marched and spoke at the first Trans Day of Remembrance vigil representing the Bronx & Harlem in 2013 and 2014 and also helped plan and organize Trans Day of Remembrance themed “family Matters” for 2015.
I was accepted into the Northern Manhattan’s Fellowships First Cohort in (2014-2015) upon completion was honored with Certificates from The Manhattan Borough Presidents office Gail Brewer and Councilwoman Inez Dickens office.
I’m an active parent who has served as Vice President on the PTA at one of 1 of my daughters’ schools, also served on the Board of Directors as reasuere and pesident (2010-2015) where I presently live with my partner and daughters.
I’m a proud Cool Culture Family Leader for the Cool Culture program. Amber our youngest daughter and myself were featured in Cool Cultures first family Newsletter and also spoke at the Guggenheim in (2015) to the Board members and founders at a Cool Culture fundraiser about the importance and benefits of The Cool Culture program.
2. Many things shape who we are. What is one person or event or experience that has empowered you?
The above articles are just a tip of the iceberg of what myself and family have experienced and still are dealing with in regards to this situation, I would have never imagined the sociological and physical impact this situation would have on our lives. However as my mom says STILL STANDING! If you decide to read the article in the end don’t feel sorry for us. Lift us up in your prayers, stand up for TRANSLIVES, BLACKLIVES and PASS GENDA NOW! We all have the birth right to be treated with RESPECT.
3. What is a piece of Black Trans History that you want to make sure others know about and don’t forget? (person, event, cultural development, trend, ___?)
Obscure Identities is a piece of Trans History that I’d like to mention and will remember, by Painter and Artist Zen Browne. I cannot speak for him but will say I know of no other Painter or Artist in NYC that has dedicated their Heart and Soul to making sure the World knows we exist, Zen’s Paintings of Trans Men are and will be proof we lived. I sometimes still have to look in the mirror and say to myself is that you? Check out Zen’s work and Obscure Identities at http://zenbrowne.com/
How to connect and learn more about Marlow White:
Marlow White, Founder and Executive Director of Under Our Umbrella Inc.
See more black trans leaders questions/answers!
We welcome you to follow us on social media throughout February (and beyond!) and use #BlackTransHx to contribute to the conversation.