2.20 Grandparents and Advocacy

Grandparents and beloved elders can have a special place in LGBTQ families. How does one lesbian grandma stay in touch with grandkids, keep up with changing language, and stay motivated for another wave of anti-LGBTQ backlash? Dr. Ronni Sanlo's story of losing custody of her children because of her sexuality through healing and joy in becoming a grandparent will inspire you.

Meet our Guest:

Author, LGBT historian, and playwright Dr. Ronni Sanlo is the Director Emeritus of the UCLA Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Center (LGBT) Center and a frequent keynote speaker and consultant on LGBT issues in Higher Education. Now retired, Dr. Sanlo directed the UCLA LGBT Center and was professor and director of the UCLA Masters of Education in Student Affairs. Prior to coming to UCLA in 1997, Dr. Sanlo was the director of the LGBT Center at the University of Michigan. In a previous life, Dr. Sanlo was an HIV epidemiologist in Florida from 1987-1994. Ronni is the originator of the award-winning Lavender Graduation, a commencement event that celebrates the lives and achievements of graduating LGBT college students.

Ronni continues to research and write with a focus on LGBT history which is the foundation for the award-winning documentary Letter to Anita. While Ronni has many academic publications, her post-retirement books include her memoir The Purple Golf Cart: The Misadventures of a Lesbian Grandma and an historical novel about the last five months of WWII entitled The Soldier, the Avatar, and the Holocaust. Her next projects include Readers’ Theater plays with LGBT themes and an historical novel about the lesbians in Key West. She and her wife, UCLA alumna Dr. Kelly Watson, are working on a lesbian history of Palm Springs. Ronni and Kelly have been deeply involved in the current Resistance movement, travel and bike ride in interesting places both internationally and domestically, and both play really bad golf. They live in Palm Springs, CA and Sequim, WA. Ronni may be emailed at ronnisanlo@gmail.com

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