Updated: Jun 18, 2018
It gives Gender DynamiX great pleasure to announce Liberty Glenton Matthyse, a vibrant, young, respected, qualified and experienced trans non-binary activist as the new Executive Director of Gender DynamiX. Through visionary leadership Gender DynamiX continue to break barriers and overcome the structural and systemic issues facing trans and gender diverse persons through its high level regional advocacy and interventions within health, law and education, amongst others. Gender DynamiX remains persistent and consistent in achieving its vision of a Southern African region in which all trans and gender diverse persons, binary and non-binary alike, are able to live with full dignity, autonomy and agency.
After a very rigorous process of finding a suitable candidate to fill this position, Liberty/Glenton proved to be the best fit based on her/his/their embodiment and understanding of the politic of the organisation, qualification, experience and characteristics.
Born to a poor working-class single mother and brought up in the dusty rural roads of Darling, Liberty/Glenton fought against social, economic and political marginalisation to obtain her/his/their Master’s Degree in Law (cum laude) focusing on transgender human rights pertaining marriage law and is currently pursuing a cross-discipline PhD in community health sciences and law focused on the needs of trans and gender diverse persons. She/he/they previously worked as the National Advocacy Officer for Gender DynamiX.
Liberty/Glenton has a history in programmes at the University of the Western Cape where she/he/they ensured the implementation of projects across six student programmes focusing on LGBTI human rights, food security, critical writing and publishing, women’s rights, children’s rights as well as the rights of persons with disabilities (differently-abled persons). She/he/they have a history in student activism fighting for the rights of trans and gender diverse persons. As someone that supports and embodies post-structural and post-modern feminism Liberty/Glenton also has an in-depth understanding of the theory of intersectionality in practice.
Liberty/Glenton’s experience as a critical leader in human rights and social justice activism, community work, member of the African Key Populations Expert Group, experience in security and health, position on diverse human rights and social justice focused committees and task teams, background in law, their history in higher education as well as work in basic education systems will serve the organisation well in understanding and addressing the diverse lived realities of trans and gender diverse persons. With a number of academic and popular media publications as well as authoring of a self-published book ‘A Darling’s Journey to Liberty: A compilation of experiences of a young gender non-conforming (fluid) person’ she/he/they have showcased their intellectual astuteness.
As a young trans and gender diverse leader, Liberty/Glenton joins a dynamic team of experienced activists with a wealth of knowledge and expertise. With commitment, passion and drive Liberty/Glenton promises to take Gender DynamiX to new heights in the tenure to come. She/he/they bring with them extensive networks across multiple disciplines and sectors. Embodying the necessary respect for accountability and transparency, integrity, human dignity, a strong belief in the visibilisation, development and nurturing of trans-talent and trans-led spaces Liberty/Glenton promises to lead Gender DynamiX effectively and efficiently towards contributing to the regional trans-discourse for purposes of securing change for a better world for trans and gender diverse persons in Southern Africa.
The Board of Gender DynamiX is looking forward to working with Liberty/Glenton. Her/his/their wisdom and maturity stood out during the interviews. She/he/them is driven and enthusiastic and we have all the confidence that she/he/they will lead Gender DynamiX to have even a greater impact in the world, seeking justice and equality for trans and gender diverse people. We are excited and we wish her/him/them well.