Cecilia Gentili started Transgender Equity Consulting in the beginning of 2019 after serving as the Director of Policy at GMHC, the world’s first and leading provider of HIV/AIDS prevention, care and advocacy from 2016 to 2019.
Originally from Argentina, Cecilia came to the United States for a safer life as a transgender woman and lived, in the country undocumented for 10 years. During this time Cecilia gained her living through sex work, which came with drug use – for which she was continually targeted for policing. After multiple arrests and an immigration detention, she accessed recovery services and with more control over her life fought and won asylum.
Her experience surviving this time in her life impassions her desire to ensure that all people living on the margins are provided with access to the dignity and respect deserved in all spaces.
Her successes in policy inspired her to found Decrim NY, a coalition working towards the decriminalization, decarceration and destigmatization of people in the sex trade. Cecilia was instrumental in the development of two statewide bills to provide survivors of trafficking with record relief, and to end the criminalization of ‘loitering’ – a charge overwhelmingly leveled against transgender women, regardless of their involvement in the sex trade.
Cecilia started working independently with Trans Equity Consulting in 2019, and has already collaborated extensively with organizations including the AIDS Institute, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Funders for LGBTQ Issues, Borealis Foundation and Cicatelli Associates Inc. Her reputation amongst these organizations, and many more, is reflective of the deep personal commitment she brings to the work, and her unique insight which enables a deeper connection with queer and trans communities.