The General Assembly 2014 has elected four new board members for the mandate 2015 – 2016. They are:
Ugla Stefanía Jónsdóttir (Q-Association, Iceland)
Ugla currently lives in Iceland, more specifically in Reykjavík. She comes from a small rural area in the north of Iceland and has been living in Reykjavík for the past 4 years while attending university. She studies gender studies within the University of Iceland, more specifcally intersectionality studies within the gender studies deparment. She has been involved in activism for the past 6 years. She founded the first official LGBTQ organization in the north of Iceland, which was also the first organization based outside of the capital city. The organization is called Hin – Queer in Northern Iceland, and is based on giving support to LGBTQ youth and giving educational lectures in schools.
Aside from that she has worked for Q-Association of Queer Students for the past 3 years and for Trans-Iceland, organization of transpeople in Iceland. She currently works as the educational officer of the national LGBTQ organization of Iceland, Samtökin 78. She is one of the official spokesperson for transgender and queer rights in Iceland and has been for the past 5 years, where she has appeared on TV many times, had many interviews and articles within the media, as well as being considered one of the top 10 heroes under 25 years old when it comes down to gender equality issues in Iceland. She has been one of the most prominent activsts in Iceland, constantly raising awareness of groups within the LGBTQIA spectrum which tend to get ignored or forgotten.
She has also been involved in activism on an international level for the past few years, where she has collaborated with many organizations around the world, such as RFSL Ungdom, Skeiv Ungdom, Sabbah, MAG, LGL, Tandem, ANSO, Seta Ry, and of course IGLYO. Most recently she was apart of an awareness raising campaign about transgender rights in Lithuania in collaboration with LGL, where the first official transmeeting, transpizza, was held. She also appeared on Lithuanian TV talking about the importance of access to health care for transpeople. She was also a part of the prepteam for the intersectionality conference IGLYO held in Bologna in July, called Crossing Paths, where she co-held the expert session about gender.
„This is an amazing opportunity to bring my experience and expertise into the work of IGLYO. I wish for IGLYO to incorporate intersectionality into all of their work, as well as reaching out to those countries and organizations that are in need of resources, tools and support. I believe I can bring a new point of view to IGLYO and can be sure to include diverse methods, ideas and methodology which intakes all sexualities, orentations, gender identies and sexes. I look forward to being a part of this amazing organization!“
Joshua McCormick (LGBT Youth Scotland, Scotland)
Joshua currently lives in Kilbirnie, a rural community in central Scotland and is a support worker for adults with physical and learning difficulties. He has spent much of the past 2 years working with the organisation LGBT Youth Scotland in many roles but has spent a substantial amount of time as the organisation’s international youth representative, representing and advocating for LGBT youth issues in Scotland, as well as facilitating groups of young people in the service to increase their awareness of international LGBT activism. Joshua has served as a member of the Scottish Youth Parliament for his local constituency where he has worked on homophobic bullying, building better relationships with police and young people and raising awareness of discrimination faced by trans young people growing up in the area. Joshua also co-founded a local LGBT youth group 2 years ago called Open Ayrshire which provides young people a safe space to speak and learn more about sexual orientation, sexuality, gender identity and gender expression. He appeared on the BBC News during the Scottish Independence referendum discussing young voter engagement as well as publicly advocating for LGBT young people in various media.
‘IGLYO is a fantastic organisation to be a participant and a member of! I’m overjoyed to be elected to represent the membership on the Executive Board. I hope to do what I can during my term to make IGLYO not only a fantastic organisation to be part of but one of the best international organisations! I’m looking forward to the challenges the role will bring and I’m thankful for the opportunity to be a major part of IGLYO’s advocacy and lobbying efforts in the future around issues of intersectionality, social inclusion and bullying.’
Daniela Prisacariu (ACCEPT Association, Romania)
Nitin Sood (Seta ry, Finland)
Nitin is a 25-years-old Finn of Indian ethnicity who is heavily engaged in human rights activism and studies political science at University of Helsinki.
He began his activism at age of 17 when he founded a gay-straight alliance at his high school in Swaziland. Since then he has advocated human rights in various ways globally. He conducted an internship at the human rights desk of Finnish Permanent Mission in Geneva and served as a research assistant to Kees Waaldijk who is a professor of comparative sexual orientation law.
Nitin finished his Bachelor’s degree in Global Challenges at Leiden University College the Hague where he wrote his thesis on the hegemonic masculinity, corrective rapes in South Africa and the role of men in combating against sexual violence. In Finland he is involved in Seta ry’s international steering-committee and also serves as a board member at the local LGBTQ-organisation, HeSeta. During his mandate at IGLYO, Nitin hopes to work on intersectionality, mental health issues and alumni engagement.
“I know it might sound like a worn-out cliche, but it truly defines the very essence of me: I am an idealist dreamer who wants to be the change I want to see in the world. Gandhi’s words have guided my life for past eight years and will continue to lead me for the rest of my life.
Working in numerous environments has rendered me with extensive skills and experience that I am eager to use for the benefit of LGBTQ-young people across the world. IGLYO has done tremendously good work in past 30 years and the situation for LGBTQ-youth and students has improved considerably over the years, but we continue face challenges and therefore there is still a paramount need for IGLYO.