July 18, 2012 | by Michael K. Lavers
LGBT Asian conference expected to draw more than 300
Gay News, Washington Blade, Gay Asians

California Congressman Mike Honda

More than 300 people are expected to attend the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance’s annual conference in Arlington from July 19-22.

California Rep. Mike Honda; Hawaii Supreme Court Justice Sabrina McKenna; “Glee” actress Tamlyn Tomita; Gautam Raghavan of the White House Office of Public Engagement and Harper Jean Tobin of the National Center for Transgender Equality are among those who are scheduled to speak at the three-day gathering at the Crystal Gateway Marriott. The conference will also feature more than 70 workshops, plenaries and caucuses on a range of topics that include political representation, immigration, HIV/AIDS, professional development and networking.

“There are all sorts of activities happening,” NQAPIA executive director Ben de Guzman told the Blade. “Obviously with the International AIDS Conference and our national partners with the Asian Pacific and Islander community, we really are looking at this week as a confluence of all these activities and we’re really excited to carve out our own niche in this mix.”

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and NCTE on Thursday plan to announce Asian-specific statistics from their 2011 report on anti-transgender discrimination. The Queer Southeast Asian Network is scheduled to release its own report on this and other related issues the same day.

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

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