Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

‘Devastated’: LGBTQ Activist Mott Has Died

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

‘Devastated’: LGBTQ Activist Mott Has Died

Article excerpt

Well-known Topeka transgender activist Stephanie Mott died Monday at a local hospital.

Mott, 61, had been admitted to Stormont-Vail Health after suffering an apparent heart attack the previous day, said her friend, the Rev. Sarah Oglesby-Dunegan.

Mott spent a great deal of time educating the public about what it means to be transgender and sharing her deeply held belief in Christianity, as well as her belief that people don't have to choose between the two, Oglesby-Dunegan said.

Mott managed the Topeka chapter of Equality of

Kansas, according to her Facebook page.

"We are all devastated by the loss of Stephanie Mott," that organization said Monday on Twitter. "We cannot find adequate words to express our grief at her passing, but we will find solace in the knowledge that her life and her work will make Kansas a better place for future generations."

Mott told The Capital-Journal in 2011 she would forever carry the difficult memory of being a woman living in a young man's body while growing up in rural Douglas County and attending Eudora High School in the 1970s.“I was very closeted about my gender identity, but I was taunted continually because I was effeminate,” she said.

Mott told The Capital-Journal in 2010 that as early as age 7, she'd felt the need to express herself as a girl.

“I rode that horse until I was 48 through homelessness and alcoholism,” she said during the 2011 interview.

By 2011, Mott was able to say she was living happily and productively as a woman in Topeka.

Her Facebook page indicated that Mott, a Washburn University alumnus, has worked as a mental health clinician at Valeo Behavioral Health Care and formerly was an office assistant and grant writer at the Shawnee County Commission office.

That page said Mott was also founder of the Transgender Faith Tour, executive director of the Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project, a member of the Kansas Democratic Party LGBT Caucus and former state chair for Equality Kansas. …

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