Thank you so much for your interest in Catalyst! Applications for the 2021-2022 cohort are now closed. Thanks to everyone who applied. We will be reviewing applications and contacting finalists on May 19! If you have any questions, feel free to contact Jo Doyle at

We are excited to launch our third Catalyst cohort and we want YOU to apply (learn more here from the application packet)! We are delighted to invite you to join a program built exclusively for the transgender*, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming community (TGNC) in the state of Oregon. This unique year will begin with virtual retreats through the end of 2021 with hopes that we can hold spring and summer 2022 retreats in person (TBD based on COVID). Given this online flexibility we STRONGLY encourage trans leaders from every part of the state to apply.   

Catalyst is a year-long program for a selected cohort of 15-20 transgender Oregonians. Participants will attend monthly retreats where they will work to refine their leadership skills while building community with each other. Workshops are facilitated by transgender leaders who work with the cohort to create a safe, affirming, and connective space for all. The Catalyst program is 100% free of charge and includes funding to cover materials including technology (as needed), travel, room and board for in-person events.  

Are you a transgender, nonbinary, or gender-nonconforming person committed to fighting transphobia in Oregon? Are you looking for ways to be involved, to expand the work you’re already doing, or to be a leader in your community? If so, we invite you to apply for a spot in the next Catalyst cohort! Join us on an 12-month journey to explore what it means to be an advocate and leader for transgender justice. 

Goal of the Catalyst Leadership Cohort: 

Increase leadership capacity and champion transgender social justice equity initiatives that advance aspiring trans and gender non-conforming leaders while building community among participants who are all transgender, nonbinary, or gender non-conforming. 

As a cohort member, you will: 

  • Gain skills to support and expand the work you are already doing in your community. 
  • Dive into understanding power, privilege, oppression and how transphobia impacts us, and how to start dismantling these systems of oppression. 
  • Attend monthly virtual retreats/webinars and monthly community building activities where you will be surrounded by a community of transgender, nonbinary and gender non-conforming Oregonians. 
  • Build a multi-generational network of peers. 
  • Join a network of emerging transgender, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming leaders who hold a lifetime commitment to fighting for transgender justice and creating lasting change in both the LGBTQ+ and wider communities. 
  • Have opportunities to take on leadership roles in Basic Rights Oregon’s work to ensure that transgender Oregonians experience legal and lived equality. 

Time Commitment: 

  • Monthly meetings will be the third Saturday of every month (on Zoom) from 9:30am – 2pm (with breaks) 
  • Monthly community building gatherings (on Zoom) will be the first Tuesday or Thursday of the month in the evening from 6pm-7:30pm or 7pm – 8:30pm – Cohort will get to pick days/times 
  • All dates and time commitments will be posted upon confirmation of opening retreat.  
  • Selected applicants must be available to attend all retreats, monthly meetings, and closing retreats.  

Participant Criteria 

To Be Eligible: 

  • Identify as a transgender, nonbinary and/or gender-nonconforming person[1] 
  • Reside in Oregon 
  • Be 18 years of age or older 
  • Hold an interest in building a movement for justice that is united across identities 
  • Commit to full participation in program trainings, events and activities 

A note about the selection process: 

The Catalyst Selection Committee will consider several demographic factors in order to select a cohort that represents the breadth of lived experiences of transgender people in Oregon. Specifically, the selection committee will prioritize selecting a cohort that is intergenerational, includes participants living outside the Portland Metro Area, has representation from trans People of Color, and includes a balance of women, men, and nonbinary people of varying gender experiences.  


This program is completely free of charge.  


The following timeline is tentative and subject to change. 

March 8thCatalyst application opens 

April 30thCatalyst application closes 

May 17th – 31st: Catalyst finalist phone interviews 

June 15thCatalyst finalists notified of final decision 

July 17thFirst Catalyst retreat begins 

For more detailed information, including how to apply by mail, check out the application packet located here.

[1] Here “transgender” is used as an umbrella term to refer to anyone whose gender identity is different from the sex they were assigned at birth. Catalyst participants do not need to self-identify with the word ‘transgender” but should expect that this word will be used generally to describe the program and participants.