LGBTQ+ Health and Wellness Session Presenters

Liz James
Former CEO - Lesbian Health Initiative

Liz James is an out lesbian health equity and human rights advocate. She currently serves as a Member of the Oregon Statewide LGBTQ Aging Coalition and as a volunteer leader with AARP’s Southern Oregon Community Action Team. During her tenure as CEO of the Lesbian Health Initiative, a Houston-based nonprofit, she developed and delivered, LGBT Cultural Competency 101 – Tools to Improve Patient Communication, Care and Outcomes, a multi-discipline CEU training course for healthcare students and professionals.

LGBTQ Cultural Competency 101 - Tools to Improve Patient Communication, Care, and Outcomes

Liz James
Former CEO - Lesbian Health Initiative
Carey Jean Sojka, PhD
Assistant Professor - Southern Oregon University

Carey Jean Sojka, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies at Southern Oregon University. Her research and teaching interests include transgender studies, embodiment, gender, sexuality, race, disability, and fat studies. She also conducts community trainings on transgender, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and queer issues in our region.

Practice Using Gender Inclusive Language

Carey Jean Sojka, PhD
Assistant Professor - Southern Oregon University
Andy Peacock
LGBTQ+ Trainings Assistant - Southern Oregon University

Andy Peacock is an undergraduate student at Southern Oregon University who has been working within the community for several years to improve education gender-inclusive spaces and language. Andy is also currently working as the LGBTQ+ Trainings Assistant for the Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies Program at Southern Oregon University.

Practice Using Gender Inclusive Language

Andy Peacock
LGBTQ+ Trainings Assistant - Southern Oregon University
Eddie May, LCSW
Assistant Professor of Practice - Portland State University

Eddie May, LCSW, is an Assistant Professor of Practice at PSU with a small, queer affirming private practice. He seeks to hold space for courageous conversations surrounding intersectional identity, response to trauma, and the overarching connection between privilege and power within societal and interpersonal relationships. Eddie believes focus on implicit/explicit bias and socialization, informed by narrative and existentialist frameworks, is critical to clinical practice.

Centering Intersectional Identity

Eddie May, LCSW
Assistant Professor of Practice - Portland State University
Charlie Manzano
Co-creator - Transgender Cancer Patient Project

Charlie Manzano is a transgender man with stage 3b melanoma who is involved in LGBT, health, cancer, and disfigurement related activism. He is co-creator of the Transgender Cancer Patient Project which seeks to uplift and connect trans cancer patients.

Trans Patient Perspective: The Impact of Gender in Healthcare

Charlie Manzano
Co-creator - Transgender Cancer Patient Project
Roman Ruddick
Co-creator - Transgender Cancer Patient Project

Roman Ruddick is non-binary cancer patient, student, and advocate for the LGBT and young adult cancer patient communities. They are a co-founder of the Transgender Cancer Patient Project, a platform to support and bring awareness to the experiences of transgender people with cancer. In their spare time they enjoy writing and creating art centered around transgender health and cancer activism.

Trans Patient Perspective: The Impact of Gender in Healthcare

Roman Ruddick
Co-creator - Transgender Cancer Patient Project