The ACLU of Missouri has brought on Jay-Marie Hill of Music Freedom Dreams to launch its Transgender Education and Advocacy Program in Missouri.

Jay-Marie Hill (they/them) is an activist, musician, and educator who lives a life designed to help our world ascend beyond gendered and racialized norms. Hill founded Music Freedom Dreams to build systemic change in queer and trans communities around the country.

Their past organizing work has been with incarcerated women in California prisons, on St. Louis-area political campaigns and with national movements including Black Lives Matter, Black 4 Palestine, #NoDAPL and #SayHerName, among others.  Hill's speaking and performing engagements have taken place at Dartmouth College, Harvard University, American Repertory Theater, Stanford University, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, New Conservatory Theater Center in San Francisco and more.

Hill will work on the program as a consultant to the ACLU. As the founder and Lead Dreamer of consultancy Music Freedom Dreams, Hill believes that every movement needs a soundtrack, spaces for community to strategize toward freedom, and dream-filled conviction to change hearts and minds.

“While doing trainings, building community and marching our way to freedom are certainly part of changing the world, more often a piece of art will move someone more than a speech or a rally,” Jay-Marie Hill, Transgender Education and Advocacy Program coordinator said. “Art can help us realize how we want to the world to be and give us the urgent push to help make it real.”

The Transgender Education and Advocacy Program aims to raise awareness about the challenges faced by the transgender community and push back on barriers to equality in the state. The program will connect a network of leaders, advocates and organizers committed to making Missouri a more welcoming, inclusive state.

“One of the most important things we can do in our advocacy work is to center transgender people in the education of the public, the media and lawmakers,” said Sara Baker, ACLU of Missouri legislative and policy director. “We’re thrilled to have Jay-Marie on our policy team to create spaces for Missouri’s trans folks to share their stories and experiences with communities across the state.”

Hill holds a Bachelor of Arts with honors in Theater and Performance Studies and African-American Studies from Stanford University.  They also hold a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Southern California. You can find out more about Music Freedom Dreams at www.musicfreedomdreams.com.

Learn more about Jay-Marie in our Q&A

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