Written by on March 21, 2019

Story by Chuck Tackett


” First and foremost, I am identifying with the immigrant community, the Asian community, and also the Transgender community, being a Transgender woman myself. In some ways, I think I also relate to the bigger LGBTQ community, because I lived for many years as a Gay man before I transitioned to become my true self.”

Cecilia Chung – Transgender Activist

What I love the most about my volunteer job of writing my weekly articles for KC Exposures & is I love learning about different aspects of LGBTQ history. With no apologies and no regrets, I put a special emphasis when it comes to stories of LGBTQs of color.

Don’t get it twisted, or go into fake outrage. I am not anti-White, not by long shot. You will not play nut city with me when I say racism has reared its ugly head in the LGBTQ community for decades. In those same decades, I have experienced & witnessed racism. In those same decades, I know I am far from being alone in my thinking. Nationally, there have been way too many complaints from LGBTQs of color saying that we are treated as though we are invisible. If you wish to define me as anti-White for my articles because you feel you are left out, then Chuck’s Chat is not the column for you. This week’s article will be about Cecilia Chung.

If the name Cecilia Chung sounds familiar to you, She is an LGBTQ rights activist who was one of the main storylines in the 2017 ABC miniseries “When We Rise” concerning the LGBTQ Civil Rights Movement during the 1970s and 1980s.

Born in Hong Kong in 1965, Ms. Chung and her family immigrated to Los Angeles in 1984. In 1985, Cecilia moved to San Francisco to attend City College of San Francisco before transferring two years later Golden Gate University with a degree in International Management. A few years later, she spent working as a court reporter and a sales trainer at a financial company.

Cecilia Chung has spent most of her adult life as an activist for health-related issues affecting the LGBTQ community. She worked as an HIV Program coordinator at the Asian Pacific Islander Health Forum and Deputy Director at the Transgender Law Center.

Despite her extremely busy activism, in 1992, Ms. Chung decided to transition. She had been estranged from her family for years because of being Transgender.

She lost several secular jobs because her bosses noticed her physical changes while she was transitioning. Because of that, Cecilia ended up homeless and living on the streets. She had to resort to sex work so she would be able to eat. Because of the physical and sexual abuse of her occupation, Ms. Chung resorted to drugs to cope with the pain. In that same year, she became HIV+.

In 1995 after 3 years of being homeless, Cecelia was stabbed during a sexual assault and transferred to the emergency room. Being the first person on her emergency contact list, Cecilia’s mom came down where she reconciled with her daughter. In 1998, Cecilia went to Bangkok where she completed her sex reassignment surgery.

Since then, Cecilia Chung has won several honors and awards in the San Francisco area. Recently, she had served on the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS until the Mango colored Demon residing in the White House had it disbanded and fired all its members who hadn’t resigned. Ms. Chung is the Senior Director of Strategic Projects at the Transgender Law Center.

Transgender actress Ivory Aquino played the role of Cecilia Chung in the 2017 ABC miniseries, “When We Rise.”

Chuck’s Chat operates under an open authority. Opinions and comments are always welcome. Send them to

Reader's opinions

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Kansas City's LGBTQ Dance Station

Current track