Ariel Pérez Cerviño
September 28, 2022 6:00 AM EDT

Neither Alba Rueda nor I remembers the first time we met, but over the years we were often on panels together insisting that governments meaningfully address the dehumanization of LGBTQI+ persons and respect human rights. Alba’s voice was singular, because as the Undersecretary of Diversity Policies in Argentina’s Ministry of Women, Gender, and Diversity, she was both an expert and the sole transgender official in such discussions. There aren’t enough trans people in government worldwide. That’s why I celebrated this May when Alba was named Argentina’s Special Representative on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. She now has a global platform. Her first task was hosting a meeting in Buenos Aires for the activists and 42 governments of the international Equal Rights Coalition. Alba energized everyone to fight harder for LGBTQI+ people internationally. Alba’s leadership matters. She is tireless and will fight until governments truly serve, respect, and reflect all people, including trans people.

Stern is the U.S. special envoy to Advance the Human Rights of LGBTQI+ Persons

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