WHY LESBIAN VISIBILITY IS NEEDED
MONDAY 26 APRIL - 10AM
For this panel, hosted by Labour MP and LGBTQI ally, Dawn Butler join some of the UK's most inspirational LGBTQI women leaders as they introduce us to Lesbian Visibility Week and discuss the importance of visibility past, present and future.
MEET THE PANEL:
DAWN BUTLER MP – CHAIR OF PANEL
Dawn Butler MP was elected as the Member of Parliament for Brent South on 5 May 2005 and became the first elected African-Caribbean woman to become a Government Minister in the UK. Dawn was then elected MP for Brent Central in 2015.
Dawn, one of six children, was born and raised in East London to expats from Jamaica. At a young age she worked on a market stall as well as helping out at her family owned bakery before starting her adult career as a computer programmer/systems analyst.
Dawn’s desire to enter politics came from a deep-rooted commitment to address inequality and strong values imparted from her parents. She soon went on to work as an equality and race officer at the GMB union and an adviser to the Mayor of London.
Dawn continues to commit her time in parliament to representing groups and people in society that are often underrepresented. In 2017 Dawn became the first MP in its history to sign a question in the House of Commons using British Sign Language. Dawn used sign language in her question to highlight the need to give the language full legal status.
Dawn has been awarded three times by the Patchwork Foundation having been voted the People's Choice 2016 Labour MP of the Year Award, Overall MP of the Year Award 2017 and Labour MP of the Year Award 2020. In 2020 Dawn was named one of the 25 most influential women in the UK by Vogue. Dawn served as Labour’s Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities between 2017-2020.
NANCY KELLEY - CHIEF EXECUTIVE, STONEWALL
Nancy previously was the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of the Policy Research Centre at the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen). At NatCen, she led a team of over 80 researchers specialising in social issues like health, crime and justice, education, work and income, and has been the lead on revenue growth as NatCen has returned to financial health over recent years.
Nancy is a passionate advocate for social justice and equality, and while at NatCen has worked on public attitudes to LGBT communities, as well as experiences of discrimination and social exclusion across LGBT communities and other disadvantaged groups.
Throughout her 20-year career, Nancy has built up a diverse record of policy and leadership experience working across the third sector and in Government. Prior to joining NatCen, she worked at the Department for Work and Pensions.
She has also held various policy and research roles at UK charities including the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Refugee Council and Barnardos.
Nancy joined Stonewall after a transformational period for the charity which saw it become fully trans inclusive, develop ground-breaking partnerships with the likes of UK Black Pride and The Premier League, and release a series of in-depth research reports, describing the state of the nation for LGBT people in Britain.
PHYLL OPOKU GYIMAH – EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF KALEIDOSCOPE TRUST
Phyll Opoku-Gyimah is the executive director of Kaleidoscope Trust, an organisation working towards the liberation of LGBT+ people around the world. Widely known as Lady Phyll – partly due to her decision to reject an MBE in the New Year’s Honours' list to protest Britain’s role in formulating anti-LGBT+ penal codes across its empire – she is nucleus of the award-winning celebration and protest that is UK Black Pride; a community builder and organiser; an Albert Kennedy Trust patron, and a public speaker focusing on race, gender, sexuality and class. She's regularly called upon to advise nascent LGBT+ organisations around the world to help leaders create cogent organising strategies, establish robust partnership networks and work effectively in service of the LGBT+ community
LINDA RILEY – PUBLISHER, DIVA MAGAZINE AND FOUNDER OF LESBIAN VISIBILITY WEEK
Linda began her career in publishing over 20 years ago as joint publisher of both g3 and Out in the City magazine, and started working in diversity related events a decade later. She has become a powerhouse in the diversity and inclusion sector, starting initiatives such as the Global Diversity List, European Diversity Awards, the Pride Power List and many more.
Linda is publisher of DIVA magazine, Europe’s leading brand for LGBTQI women and non binary people; she is the founder of Lesbian Visibility Week.
Linda is a former Board Director of US based LGBT campaign group GLAAD (2013 - 2019) and Patron of LGBT homelessness charity akt. Currently, she is a Patron of Diversity Role Models, a LGBT anti-bullying charity. Linda is also a House of Stonewall Golden Champion for Stonewall Housing.
Linda is also a former Stonewall Award winner and Business Icon of the Year from the Icon Awards 2017.