Community Mourns Loss of Transgender Leader
Alexis Rivera is remembered as a courageous advocate for transgender rights and social justice for all

Alexis Rivera, a beloved community leader and transgender advocate died on Wednesday, March 28th in Los Angeles. Memorials will be held this weekend in Los Angeles and next weekend in San Francisco.

Alexis began her activism in California’s transgender community almost fifteen ago as an outreach worker for  LGBT youth in Hollywood. She was hired at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ Division of Adolescent Medicine where she became a case manager and eventually became the first program director for CHLA’s groundbreaking Tranny Rockstar program, where she helped hundreds of transgender youth in Los Angeles. A natural leader, she served as Commissioner for the Los Angeles County Commission on HIV/AIDS; founding board member of FTM Alliance of Los Angeles; and, chair of the Transgender Service Provider Network. Alexis was also a founding member of the League of Trans Unified Sisters (LOTUS), a sisterhood for transgender women.

Transgender Law Center was honored to have Alexis join its staff as Policy Advocate in 2007. Alexis advocated for statewide policy change and trained hundreds of transgender community members to build relationships with their elected officials. During this time, Alexis was also a leader of the Transgender Law Center’s Health Care Access Project and helped secure affordable transgender healthcare services in several counties across California.

Alexis received many awards and honors in recognition of her leadership, including the Trans-Unity Trailblazer and Spirit Awards, the Latino Caucus on HIV Prevention Leadership Award,  and the first QUEST Advocacy Pageant sash in 2002.

“Words can barely express the grief experienced by California’s trans communities this week,” said Masen Davis, Executive Director of Transgender Law Center. “A proud trans Latina and natural leader, Alexis Rivera was a role model and inspiration for countless youth – and many “elders” too.  She understood that we are stronger together, and she kept organizing until the very end. Alexis’ death is a reminder that the fight for equality – and against AIDS – is far from over.”

A memorial gathering will be held in Fiesta Hall at Plummer Park, 7377 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, on Sunday, April 1st at 12:15pm.  A viewing will be held on Monday, April 2nd from 1pm to 3pm at Abbott Abbott & Hast Mortuary.

A San Francisco memorial gathering will be held at the SF LGBT Center, 1800 Market Street, on Saturday, April 7th from 3pm to 5:30pm.

Transgender Law Center will continue to post reflections, videos, and links to information about ways to celebrate Alexis on To submit your reflections or information please email .

Video from Transgender Leadership Summit, 2007. Alexis Rivera.  

Memorial Video and Blog on Learning Trans:

If you would like a link to your reflections included here, please email Mark Snyder