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Conference Speakers

Keynote Address

Dr. Carol Queen

Center for Sex and Culture 

Monday, July 10, 10am, Salon B

Dr. Carol Queen is a writer and cultural sexologist with a doctorate of education in human sexuality.  She also works as staff sexologist at Good Vibrations, the women-owned, worker-owned sex toy and bookstore in San Francisco, and has spent the last several years consulting with the company's emerging video production department, Sexpositive Productions, which released its first videos in 2001.

Queen has addressed numerous scholarly and professional conferences, including the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, the International Condom Conference, the International Conference on Prostitution, and the International Conference on Pornography; she frequently addresses college as well as general and specialized audiences.

Carol Queen is active on behalf of progressive sex education and sexual minority issues. Currently most closely affiliated with the bisexual and sex work communities, she has been speaking publicly about non-mainstream sexualities, from lesbian to leather, for over 25 years.  Her perspective in addressing sexual diversity incorporates personal experience, accurate sex information, and informed cultural commentary.

CSC MISSION: To provide non-judgmental, sex-positive sexuality education and support to diverse populations by means of classes, workshops, social gatherings, and hands-on, practical skills-building events; to maintain and house these events and supporting materials and functions; to maintain a publicly-accessible library and archives; to staff and support this learning environment.

Conference Speakers

(Featured in order of appearance)

Cheryl Radeloff

Minnesota State University, Mankato  

"State Sanctioned Sex: Nevada's Criminal Codes"

Monday, July 10, 10:30am, Salon B

Cheryl Radeloff is an associate professor at Minnesota State University, where she teaches in the Women’s Studies Department.  Radeloff’s scholarship has included examinations of gender roles, feminism in science education, and the dynamics of feminist teaching and mentoring methods.  While a doctoral student at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Radeloff taught “Porn in the USA,” a course designed to teach critical thinking skills about the issues that surround pornography, such as feminism, power, violence, art, entertainment, censorship, and oppression. 


Candice Seppa Arroyo, MA

"State Sanctioned Sex: Nevada's Criminal Codes"

Monday, July 10, 10:30am, Salon B

Candice Seppa Arroyo has published and presented papers on deviance, including works that examine how deviant populations are defined and how one becomes a member of a deviant population; she has also written about the process of seeking acceptance for deviant presentations of the self in academia.  Arroyo’s most recent scholarship explores the politics of crime and punishment in Nevada’s sex industry.


Stephanie Wahab Ph.D., M.S.W.

Associate Professor, Portland State University Graduate School of Social Work

"Critical Reflections on a Prostitution Diversion Program: Findings from a Qualitative Evaluation"

Monday, July 10, 10:30am, Salon B

Stephanie Wahab, Associate Professor at Portland State University’s Graduate School of Social Work, has produced and circulated scholarship highlighting feminist debates regarding sex work and prostitution, and was instrumental in creating the new framework with which the social work profession views and considers sex work and sex workers.  This framework, and its accompanying policy changes, were revolutionary, and include Wahab’s insistence on respecting the dignity and worth of sex workers and their right to self-determination.  She also acknowledges the importance of combating racism, sexism, and classism as it intersects in the lives of sex workers, and calls for the vigorous support of victims of the sex industry and sex workers who have been victimized.


Darby Hickey

Different Avenues, Best Practices Policy Project

"Transgender Activism & Sex Worker Rights"

Monday, July 10, 10:30am, Salon B

Darby Hickey is Program Coordinator for Different Avenues, a Washington, DC non-profit organization that provides services to youth and young adults, ages 12 to 30, who are homeless or living in insecure housing.  Many of the organization’s clients are transgendered, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.  Different Avenues also works with people who engage in street survival strategies, including sex for favors.


Laura M° Agustìn, PhD

Researcher, Author, and Consultant

"Entrepreneurs Against Decriminalisation? Regulation Problems in the UK and Holland"

Monday, July 10, 10:30am, Salon B

Laura María Agustín works as a researcher, writer, and consultant, and her work has included projects focused on the sex industry, informal economies, feminism and theories of violence, and sexualities and queer theory.


George Flint

Nevada Brothel Owners’ Association

Nevada Brothel Panel

Monday, July 10, 12:20pm, Salon B

George Flint is the chief lobbyist for Nevada’s brothel industry, and is also executive director of the Nevada Brothel Owners' Association, which represents 18 of Nevada’s 27 legal brothels.  Flint, an ordained minister, also owns one of  Reno’s wedding chapel businesses.  Among people of faith, Flint is that rare individual who uses the bible to actually justify prostitution, and he references the biblical figures Mary Magdalene and Rehab in his arguments regarding the efficacy of brothels.


Geoff Arnold

Owner, Donna's Ranch

Nevada Brothel Panel

Monday, July 10, 12:20pm, Salon B

Geoff Arnold owns Donna’s Ranch, which has two Nevada locations—Wells and Battle Mountain.  Donna’s, which has been in continuous operation for the past 130 years, has been awarded a Historic Landmark designation, and is considered part of the Old West.  Arnold is also president of the Nevada Brothel Owners’ Association and is considered spokesman for the brothel industry.  He takes this position very seriously, perhaps due in part to his claim that Nevada’s brothels take in $20 to $50 million, annually.


Lorraine Harper

Manager, Sheri’s Resort

Nevada Brothel Panel

Monday, July 10, 12:20pm, Salon B

Lorraine Harper works as the manager at The Resort at Sheri’s Ranch.  This brothel, formerly known as Sheri’s Ranch, recently underwent a $7 million renovation, transforming it into a full-scale resort.  The owners hope to revolutionize the brothel industry, and compare the brothel’s renovation to the transformation of seedy topless joints into upscale pleasure palaces.  Facilities for the employees include a gym, a facial room, a full beauty salon, and a computer room so they can communicate with potential customers via e-mail.  A spot in the Sheri's line-up is now a prized position within the industry.  And, as Harper points out, “That's what we're doing here at Sheri's, raising the bar for the industry.  It's not that you're paying for sex, but you're paying for the safety and security that come with it.”


Zimmy

Worker, Kit Kat Ranch

Nevada Brothel Panel

Monday, July 10, 12:20pm, Salon B

Zimmy works at the Kit Kat Ranch, a legal, licensed brothel located near Carson City, in the unincorporated town of Mound House.  The world-famous Kit Kat Ranch has been in existence since the 1950s, and boasts swimming pools, a multi-tiered outdoor patio and deck, and a 2-bedroom VIP suite.  Billing itself as the “World’s Classiest Cathouse,” the Kit Kat Ranch is one of the few brothels in Nevada to regularly feature porn stars.


Emily van der Meulen

New York University

"Sex Work, Sex Work Policy and Lessons Learned: Canadian Experiences"

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon C

Emily van der Meulen is affiliated with STAR (Sex Trade Advocacy and Research), an activist collective of researchers, students, and community partners focusing on improving the health, safety, and well-being of sex workers through research, information, programs, and policy.


Fran Shaver

Concordia University

"Sex Work, Sex Work Policy and Lessons Learned: Canadian Experiences"

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon C

Fran Shaver has written and presented extensively on the sex trade, and has been studying sex work for over 20 years. Her current research is part of the STAR (Sex Trade Advocacy and Research) project, which is studying Canadian public policy with a focus on improving the health, safety, and well-being of sex workers through research, information, programs, and policy. STAR is an activist collective of researchers, students, and community partners.


Yim Yuet Lin

Ziteng, Hong Kong

"Evaluation of the 'Free Concern' Policy in Mainland China: The Social, Cultural and Economic Impacts on Sex Workers"

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon B

Yim Yuet Lin is a founding member of Ziteng, a Hong Kong-based sex worker’s interest group fighting for the destigmatization and decriminalization of sex work.  Ziteng also provides sex workers with health care services and provides legal advice and other assistance.  Yim has been involved in the labor movement since the 1970s, and in 1989 helped found the Hong Kong Women Workers’ Association, which advocates for the rights and protections of women workers. Yim was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005.


Dilcia Molina

"Condiciones de Riesgo y Vulnerabilidad Ante el VIH/SIDA de las/os Trabajadoras/es del Sexo Latinas/os en el Area Metropolitana"

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon B

Dilcia Molina specializes in social psychology, investigations, and popular education.  Molina has lived in the United States under political asylum since 2002.  Because of her work as a human rights activist in the LGBT Honduran community, she has become an information specialist for other LGBT Latina/o asylum seekers.  At the Clínica del Pueblo, Molina coordinates support groups for people living with HIV, and is conducting a study on immigrant Latinos who are involved in commercial sex in the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia area.  She also helps female victims of domestic violence, and along with other community leaders, plans to create a center that provides support to domestic violence victims.


Rachel Wotton

Secretary, Touching Base Inc.

International Spokesperson, Scarlet Alliance

"Sex Services Premises Planning Advisory Panel: The Guidelines"

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon B

"Touching Base: Sex Work and Disabled Clients"

Wednesday, July 12, 3:15pm, Salon C

Rachel Wotton is secretary for Touching Base, Inc., a not-for-profit organization working to foster connections between people with disabilities and sex workers, with a focus on access, discrimination, human rights, and legal issues, and the attitudinal barriers that these two marginalized communities face.  Wotton is also the International Spokesperson for Scarlet Alliance, an Australian Sex Worker Association that aims to achieve social, legal, political, cultural, and economic justice for both active and retired sex workers.

Allen Lichtenstein

General counsel, ACLU Nevada

“Panel: Know Your Rights! Sex Work and the Law”

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon D

Allen Lichtenstein is a general counsel for the ACLU of Nevada.


Holly Pottle

Sex Workers' Rights Advocate

MA Student, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

“Panel: Know Your Rights! Sex Work and the Law”

Monday, July 10, 1:30pm, Salon D

"Sex Workers' Rights Movement: Obstacles and Resiliency- Advocating for Occupational Rigths in the Sex Industry"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon B

Holly Pottle holds a master’s degree in sociology and will begin doctoral work in fall, 2006.  Pottle’s scholarship includes works that examine the sex workers’ rights movement, such as the paper she presented at the Mid-South Sociological Association’s 2006 Conference, “Strippers, Whores, and Advocates: Exploring Resiliency and Persistence in the Sex Workers’ Rights Movement.”


Alexandra Lutnick

University of California San Francisco

St. James Infirmary

"SWEAT (Sex Worker Environmental Assessment Team)"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon C

Alexandra Lutnick received her MA in Human Sexuality Studies from San Francisco State University in the spring of 2004.  Lutnick  is a sex worker, a harm reduction counselor for St. James Infirmary, and Staff Research Associate III for the University of California, San Francisco.  Currently, Lutnick is the coordinator for the SWEAT (Sex Worker Environmental Assessment Team) project, a multi-level study that aims to identify the ways in which social capital impacts the health of female sex workers in San Francisco.  This project is conducted by UCSF in conjunction with St. James Infirmary, a provider of health care and social services for all sex workers, which also works towards preventing occupational illnesses and injuries.


Erin Rehel

PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology

Brandeis University

“Sex Work and Harm Reduction: A Strategy for Empowerment"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon C

Erin Rehel graduated in 2005 with an M.A. in Religious Studies (Specialization in Bioethics) from McGill University in Montreal. While at McGill she was actively involved in the sexual Assault Centre of McGill’s Student Society, where she had the opportunity to work with the Montreal based organization Stwlla, a sex workers rights organization. Her academic interest in sex work stems from her work in sexual ethics, international aspects of violence against women, health care policy and ethics, and medical sociology.


Miranda Waggoner

PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology

Brandeis University

“Sex Work and Harm Reduction: A Strategy for Empowerment"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon C

Miranda Waggoner has completed previous graduate work in Sociology at the University of Texas at Austin where she researched young women’s involvement in feminist politics, including views on the intersection of feminism and sex work. Her other recent research projects have focused on underground and alternative political communities, and health related outcomes of civic engagement. Her interest in sex work focuses on how the work is treated in communities, in political discourse, and how sex work relates to public health.


GiGi Thomas

HIPS Client Advocate

“Police Brutality”

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon C

"Peer Based Outreach with Street Based Sex Workers" 

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, Salon D

GiGi Thomas is a 35-year-old African American woman who has lived in Washington, DC all her life.  She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in social work at the University of District of Columbia.  Thomas is the Client Advocate for HIPS (Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive), where she has worked to assist, support, and empower male, female, and transgendered sex workers for the last 6 years.   As a transgendered woman, Thomas considers herself an expert in issues of sex work and violence, and is also on the Board for THE (Transgender Health Empowerment), which is the first supportive housing for transgender in Washington D.C.


Matthew Brittain, LCSW, DCSW

Diplomates: Clinical Social Work, NASW, American Board of Sexology, American College of Forensic Examiners

Effective Change

"Classification of Sex Crime Characteristics: How the Criminalization of Prostitution Results in More Damage than it is Intended to Prevent"

Monday, July 10: 3:20pm, Salon D

"Sexual Surrogacy"

Wednesday, July 12, 11:45am

Mathew Brittain is a clinical forensic social worker who works with clientele populations that include couples who need sexual guidance, individuals with sexual dysfunctions, both male and female adult victims of sexual assault, and agencies and businesses who wish to address issues of sexual harassment.


Emily Luther

Graduate Student

Depts of English, Women’s Studies, and The Writing Program

Syracuse University

“Anti-Discriminatory Praxis: Teaching Alexa Albert’s Brothel”

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon D

Emily Luther is an educator currently completing her MA in Women’s Studies. She designed a sophomore-level university writing course entitled, “Sex, Gender, and Labor Issues in the United States,” for which she uses Alexa Albert’s Brothel as a primary text. As a feminist scholar she has sex and sexual behavior in literature and critical theory for a number of years. Most recently Luther has explored in depth the perceptions of sex and sexual behavior in America by studying legal prostitution in Nevada, and by studying Hip-Hop lyricism. She is interested in sexual politics as a potentially anti-imperialist force to combat sexism, racism, and homophobia in the US, and she is also looking at how the criminalization of prostitution and the social stigmas surrounding sex work perpetuate discrimination.


Jill McCracken

PhD Candidate, Rhetoric

University of Arizona

"‘Prostitution’ / 'Sex Work’ / 'The Exchange of Sex for Money or Drugs’: Representations, and the Material Conditions of these Workers’ Lives"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon D

Jill McCracken has worked in the sex industry as a dancer and has done research on the sex industry for the past four years. She is currently working on her dissertation, which is an analysis of street sex workers and the material conditions of their lives, and how these material conditions are reproduced, reflected, and entrenched in policy surrounding street sex work.


Avaren Ipsen

PhD Candidate, Graduate Theological Union

Adjunct Lecturer

University of California, Berkeley

"Contradicting Religious Arguments Against Prostitution"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon D

Avaren Ipsen is a PhD candidate at the Graduate Theological Union in Biblical Literature and is an adjunct Lecturer at UC Berkeley in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies. A wife, mother and student Avaren is also very involved with local grassroots activism. She considers herself to be an "organic intellectual" and a feminist liberation theologian. Her dissertation work is on the Bible and global prostitution. Ipsen, along with many other scholars in the field, are using the Bible to show that Jesus accepted prostitution and that he in fact was nice to prostitutes.

When she is not lecturing on campus or studying, Avaren and her son Gus spend time protesting nuclear power or dress up like “Killer Tomatoes” to educate the public about Genetically Modified Organisms. She was recently appointed to the Berkeley Commission on the Status of Women, a position she hopes to use to further the rights of prostitutes in the Bay Area and around California. "It's very much about the civil rights of women. Should women be jailed for adult consensual sex?"


Samantha Erskine

Graduate Student, Women's History Program

Sarah Lawrence College

"Erotic Laborers Banished from the Feminist Movement"

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon B

Samantha Erskine is a graduate student studying women's history at Sarah Lawrence College, in New York.  She intends to pursue a career in policy, as it relates to race, gender, sexual politics, and reproductive justice.  Samantha has worked with pregnant and parenting teenagers and at two battered women's legal clinics, as well as at a reproductive rights organization, an emergency shelter for homeless women, and at various civil rights organizations.  She also worked as a self-employed web designer and professional Latin dancer for five years.  As an undergraduate, Samantha received two Bachelors of Arts degrees in Psychology and Women's Studies.  She intends to pursue a PhD in sociology and social policy.


Danielle Brodnick

M.A., Gender & Cultural Studies

“The Institution of Prostitution: A Woman’s Choice”

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon B

Danielle Brodnick holds a Master’s of Arts degree in gender and cultural studies.  Her research focuses on the sex workers’ rights social movement, women, and shame.


Rachel West

US PROStitutes’ Collective

“Decriminalization in the Making: Implementing a City Resolution to Protect Sex Workers and Stop Arrests and Prosecutions”

Monday, July 10, 3:20pm, Salon B

Rachel West was born in Africa and has lived in San Francisco since 1981 where she is a community organiser at the Crossroads Women's Centre and is involved in the Global Women's Strike. Rachel also works at Rainbow Grocery, one of the largest worker-owned health food co-operatives in the US, and she coordinates the Every Mother is a Working Mother Network in San Francisco. She is also a spokeswoman for US PROS (the US PROStitutes Collective) which campaigns for the decriminalization of prostitution and for economic alternatives for women, so no man, woman or child is forced into prostitution through poverty.


Sapna Patel, Esq.

Staff Attorney, Sex Workers Project, New York, NY

"Legal and Policy Support to Sex Workers and Sex Workers Organizing"

Wednesday, July 12, 10:00am, Salon B

Sapna Patel is the Staff Attorney for the Sex Workers Project (SWP), the first program in New York City, and in the country, to focus on the provision of legal services, legal training, documentation, and policy advocacy for sex workers.  Using a harm reduction and human rights model, the SWP protects the rights and safety of sex workers who by choice, circumstance, or coercion remain in the industry.


Kristen Freeland

Outreach Coordinator, Sex Workers Project, New York, NY

"Legal and Policy Support to Sex Workers and Sex Workers Organizing"

Wednesday, July 12, 10:00am, Salon B

Kristen Freeland is originally from California, where she began working for progressive change through her involvement with San Francisco Women Against Rape, Needle Exchange, and Food Not Bombs. In 2000, she joined the Exotic Dancers Union and later assisted with The Lusty Lady Theatre's transition into becoming a worker-owned co-operative in May 2003.  She joined The Sex Workers Project in New York City as an outreach worker in June 2005, and is currently pursuing degrees in Sociology and Dance at Hunter College.


Jennifer Ramirez

Outreach Worker, Sex Workers Project, New York, NY

"Legal and Policy Support to Sex Workers and Sex Workers Organizing"

Wednesday, July 12, 10:00am, Salon B

Jennifer Ramirez is the Outreach Worker for the Sex Workers Project (SWP), the first program in New York City, and in the country, to focus on the provision of legal services, legal training, documentation, and policy advocacy for sex workers. Using a harm reduction and human rights model, the SWP protects the rights and safety of sex workers who by choice, circumstance, or coercion remain in the industry.


Gennifer M. Hirano, M.Ed.

asianprincess aka Jenna Jasmine

SWOP-UCLA

"Resisting Victim Labels"

Wednesday, July 12, 11:45am, Salon D

Gennifer M. Hirano uses a variety of methods to challenge ideas regarding the construction of sexuality, including work as a writer, model, performance artist, photographer, and activist.  The development of her fine art career as the "asianprincess character," for which she is perhaps best known, began informally in college and has since developed and proliferated in multiple incarnations and mediums, ranging from photography to video, live performance to installation.  Her work communicates ideas regarding racism, feminism, sexuality, sex work, sexism, sexual assault awareness, and homophobia.


Robyn Few

Sex Workers' Outreach Project, USA

“Building a Local Network”

Wednesday, July 12, 11:45am, Salon B

Robyn Few is the Director of SWOP-USA (Sex Workers Outreach Project-USA), an organization she founded in 2003.  Few was motivated to create SWOP following a 2002 federal arrest and conviction that was based on trumped up charges that equated terrorism with prostitution.  The group, whose goal is to decriminalize prostitution and to protect women from violence, has a sister organization in Australia, SWOP-AU.  Few’s work has taken her across the globe,  including to New Zealand, where she  filmed a documentary that features the New Zealand activists and parliamentary members who were instrumental in the decriminalization of prostitution.  In addition to her work to decriminalize prostitution, Few has worked tirelessly as an advocate and caregiver for medical marijuana and AIDS patients.


Lam Yee Ling

Zi Teng, Hong Kong

"Lobbying and Public Education Work"

Wednesday, July 12, 11:45am, Salon C

Lam Yee Ling is an advocate with Zi Teng, a sex workers’ rights organization in Hong Kong, that believes that sex work is work and that sex workers should enjoy labor and human rights. Zi Teng fights for decriminalization of sex work, and has developed a wide network throughout Mainland China, Australia, Cambodia and Japan, and they work hand-in-hand with academics, legislators, HIV/AIDS concerns, sex worker organizations, and sex workers to provide different services and support for both local and migrant female and male sex workers.


Barb Brents, PhD

Professor, Department of Sociology

University of Las Vegas, Nevada

“Sex Work and the Academy: Challenging Assumptions and Practice”

Wednesday, July 12, 12:45pm, Salon B

Barbara Brents received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Missouri.  Her research and teaching areas of specialization include political and comparative historical sociology, social policy, gender, and the sex industry.  She has published articles in American Sociological Review, Critical Sociology, Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, and Social Science and Medicine; and she has served as president of the Nevada ACLU. She is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology and is a faculty affiliate with the Women's Studies Department at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. She is co-founder of the SABIR (Sex and Body Industry Research) Project with Kate Hausbeck. The two have published on the sex industry and are currently writing a book on Nevada's legal brothel system. In addition to her work on sexuality and the commercial sex industry, she also does research on social movements and politics.


Priscilla Alexander

COYOTE, North American Task Force on Prostitution

“Sex Work and the Academy: Challenging Assumptions and Practice”

Wednesday, July 12, 12:45pm, Salon B

Priscilla Alexander is a published expert on prostitution, having done extensive research as a member of COYOTE- the oldest sex workers' rights movement- established in 1976. In 1979, with Margo St. James, Alexander founded the North American Task Force on Prostitution (formerly known as the National Task Force on Prostitution), a loose coalition of sex workers' rights organizations in the United States and Canada. From 1985 to 1990, Alexander worked with Project AWARE, one of the first studies to examine the epidemiology of HIV/AIDS among female prostitutes and other women. In 1987, she was a founding member of the California Prostitutes Education Project (CAL-PEP), one of the first sex worker-organized HIV/AIDS prevention projects in the world, and the only such project in the United States organized by sex workers on their own behalf. In 1987, she co-edited the book Sex Work: Writings by Women in the Sex Industry, published by Cleis Press. From 1989 to 1993 she was a consultant with the World Health Organization's Global Programme on AIDS, serving as the focal person on sex work and HIV/AIDS, and developing a strategy for responding to the problem of HIV/AIDS among women. Her publications include articles on a variety of issues related to sex work, including HIV/AIDS epidemiology, scapegoating, HIV/AIDS prevention, occupational safety and health, and human rights. She also studied at Columbia University's School of Public Health.


Carol Leigh

Aka Scarlot Harlot, Unrepentant Whore

Director, BAYSWAN

“Sex Work and the Academy: Challenging Assumptions and Practice”

Wednesday, July 12, 12:45pm, Salon B

Carol Leigh, also known as Scarlot Harlot, is an activist, performer, and author who has been part of the sex workers' rights movement since the 1970s; Leigh coined the term “sex work” in.  She has participated in numerous organizations, including founding the Bay Area Sex Workers' Advocacy Network, participating as an active member of the Sex Workers' Outreach Project, and performing as a spokesperson for Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics (COYOTE).  Leigh coordinated a street outreach project, volunteered at Needle Exchange, curates the Sex Worker! Film and Arts Festival, administers Prostitutes Education Network Website, and represented San Francisco's Commission on the Status of Women on the Board of Supervisor's Task Force on Prostitution.  She has also published extensively, participating in numerous anthologies about sex work.  Leigh is a performer and filmmaker and most recently toured the US with the Sex Workers' Art Show.


Kate Hausbeck

Professor, Department of Sociology

University of Las Vegas, Nevada

“Sex Work and the Academy: Challenging Assumptions and Practice”

Wednesday, July 12, 12:45pm, Salon B

Kate Hausbeck is an Associate Professor of Sociology and a faculty affiliate in the Women's Studies Department at the University of Nevada Las Vegas where she is co-founder of the SABIR (Sex and Body Industry Research) Project with Barb Brents. The two have published on the sex industry and are currently writing a book on Nevada's legal brothel system. Dr. Hausbeck does research on gender, sexualities, visual culture, theory and, of course, the commercial sex industry. Hausbeck received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the State University of New York at Buffalo.  Her research addresses classical, contemporary, and feminist theory, including gender environment and sociological praxis in China.  She is an ACLU Nevada Board member.  She also teaches in the Women's Studies Department at UNLV. 


Susan M. Lopez-Embury, MSc

Desiree Alliance

SWOP-LV

“Sex Work and the Academy: Challenging Assumptions and Practice”

Wednesday, July 12, 12:45pm, Salon B

Susan Lopez-Embury received her BA in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of California at Berkeley, where her concentration was on human rights and conflict resolution. She received her MSc. with merit from London School of Economics in Social Policy and Planning in Developing Countries. Her dissertation on sex workers’ organizing in developing countries received distinction at LSE, and she hopes to eventually publish similar work.  Having spent 14 years of her life as a sex worker, Susan has decided to pursue further research as well as advocation for sex workers’ rights. Towards this end, she is involved as a founding member of Desiree Alliance, and is currently in the process of setting up a Sex Workers’ Organizing Project (SWOP) in Las Vegas for which she is in collaboration with the Sex Workers’ Outreach Project (SWOP) in the San Francisco Bay.


Veronica Monet

Desiree Alliance, SWOP-USA

Media Outreach, Sex Educator

Author

"Sex Work and the Media"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon B

Veronica Monet graduated as an honor student from Oregon State University in 1982, with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a minor in Business Administration. After working in corporate settings for seven years, she spent the next 14 years acquiring experience with the practical and political aspects of sex work as an erotic model, porn actress, prostitute, escort, and courtesan. Ms. Monet has become very popular with the media and the public as her list of credits for television, radio, magazine, newspaper, book credits and lecture venues has grown quite extensive. She offers classes, workshops, and lectures on the topics of gender and sexuality, in addition to her services as an international escort.  Her political activism has included memberships with Bay Area Bisexual Network, COYOTE San Francisco, and Sex Worker Outreach Project.


Chris Heinisch

Professional Web Designer

“Websites for Workers: How to Build Your Own Website”

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, SWOP Ste

Chris Heinisch is senior Web site developer. Heinisch specializes in HTML and other design languages.


Stacey S.

Desiree Alliance

"Organizational Outreach: Building Alliances Outside of the Sex Worker's Rights Movement"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon D

Stacey  is the acting director and a founding member of the Desiree Alliance. Swimme is a founding member of the Sex Workers’ Outreach Project USA, working to promote health, dignity and safety for those working in the sex industry. She is a sex worker, activist and student continuing her education in public health.


Erika Smith

Different Avenues, Washington, DC

"Dancers are Special"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon D

 "Getting Off On-line: Creating an Effective Peer Support Program for sex workers via the Internet

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30 pm, SWOP Ste

Erica Smith is the Drop-In Center Coordinator for Different Avenues, a Washington, DC non-profit organization that provides services to youth and young adults, ages 12 to 30, who are homeless or living in insecure housing.  Many of the organization’s clients are transgendered, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.  Different Avenues works with people who engage in street survival strategies, including sex for favors.


Momo Douglas

Peer Educator

Different Avenues, Washington, DC

"Dancers are Special"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon D

"Getting Funding for Sex Worker Rights Work (Yes, Get Money!)"

Wednesday, July 12, 3:14, Salon B

Momo Douglas works as a Peer Educator for Different Avenues, a Washington, DC non-profit organization that provides services to youth and young adults, ages 12 to 30, who are homeless or living in insecure housing.  Many of the organization’s clients are transgendered, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.  Different Avenues also helps youth who themselves are parents, as well as parents of youth, and works with people who engage in street survival strategies, including sex for favors.


Holly Richardson

Arise for Social Justice

"Decriminalization of our Lives: Working With Diverse Communities to Support Decriminalization"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon C

Holly Richardson is a community organizer who works with the Springfield, Massachusetts-based, multi-issue, low-income-rights organization Arise for Social Justice.  Richardson, who is involved with a  variety of activist organizations, connects the criminalization of prostitution with high rates of incarceration and the ensuing proliferation of  jails, and argues for the decriminalization of sex work.


Solobia Hutchins

Arise for Social Justice

"Decriminalization of our Lives: Working With Diverse Communities to Support Decriminalization"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon C

Solobia Hutchins works with Arise for Social Justice,  a Springfield, Massachusetts-based, multi-issue, low-income-rights organization.  Hutchins is passionate about the issues that surround incarcerated women and argues that “Women should get the services they need while incarcerated, but the truth is that I don’t want women to be imprisoned in the first place.”  She is critical of the lack of low-income housing in Massachusetts, and points out that drug treatment facilities are shrinking, and real living-wage jobs are absurdly scarce.  The fall-out of these combined factors is that the number of poor women and women of color who are incarcerated is exploding, which Hutchins finds unacceptable and deplorable.


Caty Simon

Arise for Social Justice

"Decriminalization of our Lives: Working With Diverse Communities to Support Decriminalization"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon C

Caty Simon is a 23 year old escort and activist living in Western Massachusetts, and a board member of Arise for Social Justice, a multi-issue, low-income-rights organization based in Springfield.   Simon also works with the WISE committee, which was formed to address the concerns of criminalized women.  WISE focuses on decriminalizing prostitution and legalizing/starting needle exchange programs in the city of Springfield, as well as promoting other harm reduction projects.  Simon was recently featured as one of Curve magazine's "10 Activists Under 25."


Natasha Sommers

Adult Entertainer, Transgender Advocate

"Decriminalization of our Lives: Working With Diverse Communities to Support Decriminalization"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon C

Natasha Sommers is an activist who advocates for transgender rights.  She has worked with various public school districts to collect stories from transgender youth, and hopes to collect those histories in a book entitled “From Our Own Mouths.”  Sommers is also involved with a transgender prisoner support group and works with the Sex Worker’s Outreach Project (SWOP-USA). Sommers, who was a key collaborator in ensuring inclusivity and diversity among attendees of this conference, also devotes time to advocating for transgender sex workers in San Francisco’s Tenderloin district.


Jill Brenneman

STORM (Sex Trade Opportunities for Risk Minimization)

"Not Ready to Make Nice" in "Decriminalization of our Lives: Working With Diverse Communities to Support Decriminalization"

Wednesday, July 12, 2:00 pm, Salon C

Jill Brenneman is a national speaker, trainer, and outreach educator working to create awareness on issues related to sex work, such as violence against sex workers, discrimination, stigmatization, and classism.  Brenneman is the Executive Director of STORM (Sex Trade Opportunities for Risk Minimization), a non-profit organization that incorporates a harm reduction-based educational and counseling program with a specific focus on issues related to sex work, sex workers, and the sex industry.  Having been a prostitute herself, Brenneman offers a first person, pragmatic, practical perspective, drawing from her own personal background, harm reduction training, and nine years of activism and outreach crisis counseling experience. 


Melissa Gira

Writer, Blogger

Lusty Lady, worker/owner, and Board of Directors member

"Working the Web: Sex Worker Organizing Online"

Wednesday, July 12, 3:15 pm, SWOP Ste

Melissa Gira is a writer, digital media artist, and human rights advocate, with a special focus on sex workers’ rights.   Currently she serves on the Board of Directors at the Lusty Lady Erotic Theatre, San Francisco's historic unionized and co-operative peep show.  Gira is the founding editor of boa: a journal of new whore culture, and a contributor to $pread Magazine and Indymedia's Faultlines.  As an instructor for Scarlot Harlot's Whore College and for the Exotic Dancers' Education Project, Melissa teaches webcam and blogging workshops for sex workers.   Her podcast, whorecast, is among the most downloaded on the iTunes Music Store, and has been reported on by both Penthouse Forum and CBS News.  Melissa has been a participant in the National Sexual Resource Center’s Institute on Sexuality, Social Inequality & Health at San Francisco State University.


Penelope Saunders

Best Practices Policy Project, Different Avenues

"Getting Funding for Sex Worker Rights Work (Yes, Get Money!)"

Wednesday, July 12, 3:14, Salon B

Penelope Saunders is the Executive Director of Different Avenues, a Washington, DC non-profit organization that provides services to youth and young adults, ages 12 to 30, who are homeless or living in insecure housing.  Many of the organization’s clients are transgendered, gay, lesbian, or bisexual.  Different Avenues also helps youth who themselves are parents, as well as parents of youth, and works with people who engage in street survival strategies, including sex for favors.  Saunders also leads the Best Practices Policy Project, an organization dedicated to creating excellence amongst organizations and advocates working with sex workers in the United States.


Eliyanna Kaiser

Executive Editor

$pread Magazine

"Journalism for Sex Workers"

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, SalonC

Eliyanna Kaiser originally hails from western Canada and is a political activist with a background in electoral politics and public policy, reproductive rights, LGBT rights, and sex worker rights. At $pread Magazine, an independent publication by and for sex workers and their allies in the sex industry, Eliyanna writes the Healthy Hooker column and edits Intercourses, as well as other recurring features and reviews. She lives in New York City with her girlfriend and their lizard, Celebration, the Leopard Gecko.  


Audacia Ray

Executive Editor

$pread Magazine

"Journalism for Sex Workers"

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, Salon C

Audacia Ray is a writer, safer sex educator, sex worker rights advocate, alternative model and graduate student who lives in Brooklyn, NY. She spent two years as a researcher and assistant curator at the Museum of Sex and has volunteered as a community educator with the Gay Men’s Health Crisis for the past few years. At $pread, Audacia is responsible for compiling the news segments and editing recurring features and reviews. Her writing ranges from personal essays to porn reviews to critical pieces about the sex industry, and has appeared in a variety of books, including Russ Kick’s anthology Everything You Know About Sex is Wrong, The Sex Herald, the forthcoming First-timers: True Stories of Lesbian Awakening, and of course $pread. She has taught workshops and spoken about sexuality at NYU, Rutgers University, and CUNY, and does HIV prevention workshops all over New York City.  She is an executive editor of the Utne Independent Press Award - winning $pread magazine, and is pursuing an MA in American Studies.


Rachel Aimee

Editor-in-Chief

$pread Magazine

"Journalism for Sex Workers"

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, Salon C

Rachel Aimee grew up in St. Andrews, Scotland. She first became involved in the movement for sex workers' rights while living in London, where she was a member of the International Union of Sex Workers (IUSW). Rachel, with Rebecca Lynn and Raven Strega, is one of the three founders of $pread. Rachel’s primary responsibilities at the magazine include editing feature articles, coordinating submissions, and handling advertising. In her spare time she obsessively photographs her cats, Lion and Platypus.


Elizabeth Saracco

Director of Peer Education

HIPS

"Peer Based Outreach with Street Based Sex Workers" 

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, Salon D

Elizabeth Saracco is the director of Peer Education for HIPS (Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive). HIPS' mission is to assist female, male, and transgendered individuals engaging in sex work in Washington, DC in leading healthy lives. Utilizing a harm reduction model, HIPS' programs strive to address the impact that HIV/AIDS, STIs, discrimination, poverty, violence and drug use have on the lives of individuals engaging in sex work.
HIPS was formed in 1993 by community and police representatives in response to the recognized need for specialized services for youth engaging in sex for gain in Washington, D.C.


Maxine Doogan

Erotic Service Providers’ Union

“Labor Organizing for Erotic Laborers”

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30pm, Salon B

Maxine Doogan is an erotic service provider. An erotic service provider is anyone who earns a living from their erotic labor; prostitutes, exotic dancers, phone sex operators, porn actors, web based or otherwise. Maxine is currently circulating a signature petition drive in San Francisco to qualify a ballot initiative that would stop the enforcement of the prostitution laws and protect sex workers.


Mike Clark

Different Avenues

"Getting Off On-line: Creating an Effective Peer Support Program for sex workers via the Internet

Wednesday, July 12, 4:30 pm, SWOP Ste

Mike Clark is an online outreach worker at Different Avenues, a Washington DC-based organization which provides services to youth and young adults, ages 12 to 30 years, who are homeless or living in insecure housing. Many of their clients are transgendered, gay, lesbian or bisexual. We also help youth who themselves are parents, as well as parents of youth. We work with people who engage in street survival strategies, including sex for favors.


(The list below includes confirmed presenters and will be updated)

Dr. Carol Queen
Center for Sex and Culture
Key Note
website

Robyn Few
Sex Workers' Outreach Project, USA
"Taking Action"
website

Gigi Thomas
HIPS, Washington, DC
"Police Brutality"
website

Stephanie Wahab Ph.D., M.S.W.
Associate Professor
Portland State University Graduate School of Social Work
"Critical Reflections on a Prostitution Diversion Program: Findings from a Qualitative Evaluation"

Erika Smith
Different Avenues, Washington, DC
"Legal Impacts on Community Outreach"
website

Emily van der Meulen 
New York University,
Olga Marques 
University of Windsor,
Jacqueline Lewis 
University of Windsor,
Fran Shaver 
Concordia University:
"Sex Work, Sex Work Policy and Lessons Learned: Canadian Experiences"
website

Melissa Gira
Writer, Blogger
Lusty Lady, worker/owner, and Board of Directors member
"Working the Web: Sex Worker Organizing Online"
website

Darby Hickey
Different Avenues, Best Practices Policy Project
"Transgender Activism & Sex Worker Rights"
websites: BPPP, Different Aves

Alexandra Lutnick
University of California San Francisco
St. James Infirmary
"SWEAT (Sex Worker Environmental Assessment Team)"
website

Veronica Monet
Author
"Sex Work and the Media"
website

Audacia Ray
Eliyanna Kaiser
Spread Magazine
"Journalism for Sex Workers"
website

Samantha E. Erskine
Graduate Student, Women's History Program
Sarah Lawrence College
"Erotic Laborers Banished from the Feminist Movement"

Carol Leigh (aka Scarlot Harlot)
"Cultural Activism: From Whore College to Puttanopoly" 
websites: BAYSWAN, Unrepentant Whore

Penelope Saunders, Ph. D.
Best Practices Policy Project, Different Avenues,
Momo Douglas
Different Avenues
"Getting Funding for Sex Worker Rights Work (Yes, Get Money!)"
websites: BPPP, Different Aves

Avaren Ipsen
PhD Candidate, Graduate Thological Union
"Contradicting Religious Arguments Against Prostitution"

Sex Workers Project, New York, NY
Stapna Patel, Esq. 
Staff Attorney,
Kristen Freeland 
Outreach Coordinator,
Jennifer Ramirez 
Outreach Worker:
"Legal and Policy Support to Sex Workers and Sex Workers Organizing"
website

George Flint 
Nevada Brothel Owners' Association,
Geoff Arnold 
Owner, Donna's Ranch,
Lorraine Harper
Manager, Sheri's Resort,
Zimmy
Worker, Kit Kat Ranch

Rachel Wotton
Secretary, Touching Base Inc. and International Spokesperson, Scarlet Alliance
"Sex Services Premises Planning Advisory Panel: The Guidelines"
"Touching Base: Sex Work and Disabled Clients"
websites: Touching Base, Scarlet Alliance

Cheryl Radeloff
Candice Seppa Arroyo, M.A.
"State Sanctioned Sex: Nevada's Criminal Codes"

Laura Agustin, PhD
Researcher, Author, and Consultant
"Entrepreneurs Against Decriminalisation?
Regulation Problems in the UK and Holland"
website

Yim Yuet Lin
"Evaluation of the 'Free Concern' Policy in Mainland China: The Social, Cultural and Economic Impacts on Sex Workers"

Dilicia Molina
"Condiciones de Riesgo y Vulnerabilidad Ante el VIH/SIDA de las/os Trabajadoras/es del Sexo Latinas/os en el Area Metropolitana"

Yenweng Peng
"Who Are Punished"

Matthew Brittain, LCSW, DCSW
"Classification of Sex Crime Characteristics: How the Criminalization of Prostitution Results in More Damage than it is Intended to Prevent"

Maxine Doogan 
Erotic Service Provider's Union
Labor Organizing for Erotic Laborers 
Websites: http://espu-ca.org/initiative.html 
www.kpfalaborcollective.org
www.legalizationsuck.com

Holly Pottle
Sex Workers' Rights Advocate
MA Student, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
"Sex Workers' Rights Movement: Obstacles and Resiliency- Advocating for Occupational Rigths in the Sex Industry"

Gennifer M. Hirano, M.Ed.
asianprincess aka Jenna Jasmine
SWOP-UCLA
"Resisting Victim Labels"
website

Natasha Sommers
Adult Entertainer, Transgender Advocate

Holly Richardson
Solobia Hutchins
Caty Simon
Arise for Social Justice
"Decriminalization of our Lives"

Jill Brenneman
STORM (Sex Trade Opportunities for Risk Minimization)
"Not Ready to Make Nice"

The Desiree Alliance conference organizers are committed to support for representation and inclusiveness of cultural, racial, economic, age, and gender identity. Please read our Diversity Statement and join our efforts to build a respectful, diverse, and strong sex worker movement.

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Desiree Alliance is a coalition of sex workers, health professionals, social scientists, professional sex educators and their supporting networks. We seek to encourage a better understanding of human sexuality by promoting ethical and unbiased research into sexual subcultures; to promote saner and more sensible approaches to policies relating to adult sexual health and behavior. We use this information to educate and empower the public to have healthy and rational attitudes about sexuality.

Desiree Alliance is a Project of Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs (SEE), a 501(c)(3) non-profit.

 


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