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Martie Sirois

North Carolina, USA

Martie Todd Sirois (pronounced 'sir-ROY') is a writer whose work has been frequently featured on HuffPost, Medium, Scary Mommy, and several other media outlets. Martie is also the mom who wrote & posted a letter on social media in 2016 that went viral, thanking the tween girls' clothing store Justice. In the turbulent aftermath of her state's notorious anti-LGBTQ law, HB2 (the "bathroom bill"), Martie wanted to thank Justice for giving her (then, gender creative son) a wonderful and affirming experience despite local government trying to mandate public accommodations (including bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing facilities) to be gender segregated exclusively by the sex indicated on one's birth certificate. She hoped by making her Facebook post public, she could let her local LGBTQ+ community know that this store was an affirming environment for TGNC kids. She never expected it to go viral, but within a few days of publishing it, that letter had been shared over 25,000 times, and two years later, continues to be circulated widely around the internet, with new people discovering it and seeking Martie out to relay how much her letter touched them for various reasons.

Martie has also been featured on BuzzFeed, Upworthy, That Odd Mom, Spoke for Red Tricycle, The Good Men Project, Today Show Parenting Community, and many other media outlets. Some of her work has been translated and syndicated worldwide.

While she has enjoyed a 30+ year “hobby career” performing on stage as an award-winning actress in both musical and non-musical theatre, Martie now enjoys using her free time to write about any and everything - but mostly about life with three children, the youngest of whom has been gender non-conforming since the age of 2 1/2 years old. In the process of learning how best to support a TGNC child who avidly swims against the current, Martie has also unwittingly (but lovingly) become a speaker, educator, and advocate for the LGBTQ and especially, the TGNC (trans and gender non-conforming) communities.

As someone who "writes for therapy" and has kept numerous journals all her life, Martie got her first public and professional writing experience when she read some of her blog material out loud for the first time ever, in an audition, and was then cast in the national live reading event series, Listen To Your Mother (RDU, 2016). For eight years, LTYM gave local writers across all 50 states and Canada a platform to read their original work on motherhood (or about mothers) before a live audience, and to have their readings enshrined forever on the YouTube LTYM channel. LTYM opened up many opportunities for Martie, starting with sharing some of her work on WUNC Radio's (NPR affiliate, NC) "The State of Things" with Frank Stasio. (LTYM, founded by Ann Imig, concluded its eight-year run with a national series finale in 2017.)

For her writing, Martie has also been interviewed by John Fugelsang on SiriusXM Insight's "Tell Me Everything, With John Fugelsang;" by The Washington Post; by Kind World of WBUR Radio (NPR, Boston); and she particpated with her husband and TGNC child in "StoryCorps," the prestigious Peabody award-winning podcast that shares important unscripted conversations, with weekly broadcasts debuting on NPR's "Morning Edition." Martie's family's story was one of the recorded stories chosen by StoryCorps to be publicly aired in or around September of 2017.

Martie is also the founder and leader of S.E.A.R.CH. (Safe Environmient for the Acceptance of Rainbow CHildren), a program of the LGBT Center of Raleigh, that serves as a playgroup for TGNC children ages 12 and under, and as a discussion group for parents. S.E.A.R.CH. also has a secret Facebook group which currently allows over 260 members, from all over the country and beyond, to celebrate, and have connections with other parents & caregivers supportively raising TGNC children.

Martie has proudly served on The Family Equality Council, (Southern Advisory Board), and greatly enjoys opportunities to guest lecture or speak on gender, inclusiveness, gender diversity, and the issues facing TGNC people. She has presented on these topics at a range of locations, from public universities like NCSU, to more private settings among public school guidance counselor meetings. Martie also spoke on a panel that presented on the topic of creating safe & inclusive spaces for LGBTQ+ students, in the Safe Schools of NC's annual Conference for Educators.

When not working or writing, Martie loves living and volunteering in her hometown in NC with her husband, Matt, their three beautiful children, and their two peculiar but lovable pets.

Visit her online at: www.gendercreativelife.com
Twitter: @TheMartieSirois

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