Transgender Day of Visibility is when we honor and uplift trans members of our communities. Visibility is one of the most important aspects of creating a more accepting and safe world for people in marginalized communities. March 31 is an important date to recognize the trans people being unapologetically visible and proud, giving space for others to entirely accept and grow into their full identities. Transgender Day of Visibility started in 2009 and has been an annual day of love and celebration for the trans community for 14 years. Acceptance of LGBTQ+ people has been proven to lower the suicide rates within the community. Suicide rates are higher within the trans community than in any other groups in the LGBTQ+ community, especially when considering multiracial trans people.
In honor of this day, here are seven trans entertainers taking up space and giving others the recognition that can be lifesaving. Happy Transgender Day of Visibility!
Trans Afro-Tainx actor Indya Moore has been unapologetically owning their full identity using both they/them and she/her pronouns. The non-binary entertainer found critically acclaimed success as Angel Evangelista on the FX series Pose. They have used their fame from the show to be a visible lighthouse for multiple marginalized communities and even distanced themselves from the Latinx moniker to embrace their indigenous identity. As reported previously, Moore decided to remove themselves from the Latinx identifier because of its inherent whiteness.
Michaela Jaé “Mj” Rodriguez
Michaela Jaé “Mj” Rodriguez is everywhere right now, and the recognition is well-deserved. The actress made waves with her portrayal of Blanca Evangelista in FX’s popular show Pose. As the house mother, Rodriguez’s role dives deep into the lives of trans women of color navigating life, love, and HIV in 1980’s/1990’s New York City. The last couple of years have seen Rodriguez’s star soar. She was the first trans cover model for LATINA Magazine, the first trans woman to win a Golden Globe, and was even named one of TIME’s Women of the Year.
Zoey Luna is a trans teenager making plenty of waves on social media with her unstoppable talent and representation. She has spent years as a trans activist and social media influencer, and her journey was captured in a three-year documentary called Raising Zoey. The film shines a light on youths discovering and growing into their trans identity. Her star continued to rise after being cast in The Craft: Legacy giving trans representation in the witchy remake of the 1994 horror classic.
Aja LaBeija first found nationwide fame as a contestant on RuPaul’s Drag Race season 9. Raised by adoptive Puerto Rican parents, Aja has embraced the Latine community as her own, even releasing a song called “Brujería.” The music video shows the beauty of our own culture regarding Afro-Caribbean practices and combats the narrative that the practices are inherently evil. Since leaving the show, Aja has opened up about her trans identity, and her Instagram is one place of constant representation for the community.
Carmen Carrera first graced our tv screens as a contestant on RuPaul’s Drag Race season 3. She didn’t come out as trans until after the season had finished and has spent her time since being a trailblazer for trans Latinas in the modeling industry. Her trans acceptance and visibility activism has taken her around the U.S. and Latin America. She has even worked with amfAR, an international nonprofit dedicated to AIDs research and HIV prevention.
Laith Ashley De La Cruz
Laith Ashley De La Cruz is a model, singer, and entertainer using his platform to speak for and on behalf of the trans community. The model regularly uses his social media platforms to uplift and amplify LGBTQ+ creators and programs and offer wisdom to fans on their own journey to self-acceptance and self-love. A scroll through his Instagram will show you the kind of person he is and the kind of world he wants to create for everyone.
Leiomy Maldonado is vogue and ballroom royalty. Maldonado has been vocal about how dance and voguing culture helped her come to terms with her identity and gave her the platform she needed to grow into the woman she is today. Her star continues to grow, and she is bringing ballroom culture further into the mainstream as a judge on HBO Max’s Legendary, a competition reality show all about voguing and ballroom.