Trans and Gender Diverse Peer Support Project

Supporting growth and sustainability of trans and gender diverse peer support across Victoria. Supported by the Victorian Government.

Welcoming Mama Alto - our new CEO

Miss Alto, a high-profile Melbourne-based trans woman of colour, jazz singer, cabaret artiste and self-defined gender transcendent diva, has built a reputation for using her voice to better the lives of others through storytelling. Her work addresses the traumas and inequalities experienced by marginalised people including trans people and artists of colour.

“I am delighted to continue to serve my communities through this new role, and to continue building upon the TGV legacy to empower our communities today and into the future with the equity, dignity and human rights we deserve.” 

Mama Alto, incoming TGV CEO

Miss Alto has curated multi-performer stage productions, community and capacity building arts projects and individual mentorships, advised and consulted extensively on equity, diversity & inclusion, assisted with arts panels and committees, and shaped our creative landscape behind the scenes.

Highlights of her professional portfolio – which includes her writing, her solo cabaret works such as "Torch Songs" and "Queerly Beloved", her co-created "Gender Euphoria" ensemble piece that sold out shows in Melbourne and toured Sydney, and her work as Midsumma Festival’s artist development coordinator – were recognised at the 2021 Australia Council Awards, where Miss Alto received the 'Australia Council Kirk Robson Award for Community Arts and Cultural Development'.

Brenda Appleton, TGV Chair, said Miss Alto was chosen after an extensive and competitive selection process.

“The ability of Victoria’s leading body for trans and gender diverse advocacy to attract candidates of Mama’s calibre for its inaugural CEO role says something very positive about the organisation we have been building at TGV” Ms Appleton said. “This points to a new era of growth in our capacity to serveVictoria's fabulous trans and gender-diverse individuals."

TGV has flourished over the last 20 years from a grassroots advocacy body into a dynamic organisation that is continuing to provide relevant, practical training for organisations in LGBTIQA+ awareness, and trans and gender diverse rights and well-being, while serving community with events, training, opportunities to volunteer, and peer-support that empowers many disadvantaged trans and gender-diverse people.

“Mama brings to the role a wealth of skills, experience and values to bridge gaps between transgender and gender diverse communities, and a society that does not always understand or appreciate our creative and leadership capabilities" Ms Appleton said. “I’ll be working hard to foster TGV’s relationship with other peak organisations across Australia. We recognise that there is much work to be done in ensuring that the most marginalised among us - whether Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander, people of colour, neurodiverse or living with a disability, young and old - come with us on our journey, catalysing mutual aid, compassion and proud advocacy."

Brenda Appleton, TGV Chair

“I believe Trans and Gender Diverse communities across Victoria will join me in celebration of Mama Alto’s appointment as CEO of TGV. Mama’s experience in serving TGD communities will ultimately strengthen TGV’s advocacy and impact.” 

Todd Fernando, Acting Commissioner of LGBTIQ+ Communities 

“The appointment of Mama Alto to this role as a transgender & queer person of colour marks an exciting beginning of a new direction for TGV. I look forward to continuing my close relationship with TGV and working with her as we both begin our new roles.”

Ro Allen, Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner

Miss Alto will start in her new role immediately.

Photo credit: Alexis Desaulniers-Lea

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