About Our Host:
In Our Own Voices, Inc.

In Our Own Voices is one of a few LGBT organizations across the country that provides comprehensive services, and the only organization in our region with a focus on the health and wellness of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People of Color (LGBT POC). Since 1998, IOOV has worked to ensure the health and well-being of our LGBT POC community through advocacy and education, anti-violence program, community organizing, social events, and support groups. We are committed to developing leadership of LGBT POC, strengthening the voices of LGBT POC in order to effectively communicate our perspectives within the larger community, and increasing our capacity for combating oppression and marginalization.

In 2008, In Our Own Voices, Inc., hosted its first LGBT POC Summit. Over 150 scholars, administrators, activists and students gathered for the important event to reflect on the status of health and wellness, substance abuse, spirituality and political advocacy within the LGBT POC community. The Summit featured presentations, workshops, and panel discussions on the importance of meaningful involvement of LGBT POC and vulnerable sub-populations in our communities and discussed issues such as: policy development and implementation, physical and mental health concerns, innovative and effective intervention methods, and research that addresses and educates on the topics of the importance of health and well-being for LGBT POC communities. By 2011 the statewide summit grew into a national conference.

Tandra LaGrone, Chief Executive Officer of In Our Own Voices Inc., notes that: “The Conference provides a platform for LGBT POC communities to examine our issues and to ascertain future strategies that we can take back to our individual communities. It is my hope we can walk away with tangible strategies that can function as the basis for future funding. Culturally specific LGBT POC programs across the country are underfunded and operate with limited staff. This makes it difficult to have a significant influence on the health and social disparities impacting our community. We need to develop concrete strategies and secure the requisite resources to affect positive change. I look forward to the 2020 Conference!”