Bisexual activist to speak at CSUN as part of series

Geraldine Marquez

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The chair of the Los Angeles Bi Task Force, an organization that focuses on educational, cultural and advocacy programs in support of the bi, fluid and pansexual community will be speaking at CSUN.

Mimi Hoang, an open bisexual activist, will be speaking today at 7:30 p.m. in the Whitsett Room in Sierra Hall.

“Mimi Hoang is coming as part of the Center for Sex and Gender Research series of occasional conversations, in which we bring to campus people who are doing important community-based work about sex, gender and sexuality,” said Jacob Hale, director of the Center for Sex and Gender Research.

Hale said Hoang is like their previous guests in that she does important community based work involving sex, gender and sexuality.

“This series is fairly new. We only started it late last semester,” Hale said. “Dr. Hoang is the first bi activist in this series, but I’m sure she won’t be the last.”

Gender and women’s studies major, Annie Senyo, 21, said that as a student of one of the departments that is co-sponsoring this event, she hopes students will gain interest and attend the event.

“One of my women’s studies professors told my class about this event and I started telling all of my friends,” Senyo said. “I really hope people come hear Dr. Hoang speak. Not only is she experienced in her work, which could teach students a lot, but she is admirable because of her courageous and strong persona who has a lot to offer. I think people would be surprised at what they could hear if they come to the event. Plus, I think it’s good for people who aren’t members of the bisexual community, or even gay and lesbian community for that matter, to attend events like these because it may help them understand and perhaps even accept those who do pertain to such communities.”

Hale said the format of the conversation is “intended to foster extensive, in-depth discussion.”

“So students — as well as staff, faculty and off-campus community members — who attend can expect to engage in learning actively about bi politics, activism and communities in the Los Angeles area,” Hale said.

Activists, especially women activists, inspire 23-year-old Cassie Smith, humanities major, she said.

“I’ve always held an admiration for women activists,” Smith said. “I think it shows their strong and determined character and it serves as an inspiration to women of all ages and races.”

A previous event that the recent series hosted has included speakers like Lisa Powell who was leader and organizer of the LGBT movement, which was held earlier this year in March.

Senyo said she attended the previous event featuring Lisa Powell last month.

“I can’t say how stirring her comments were,” Senyo said. “It has pushed me to volunteer with local organizations that support the bisexual community.”

Hale said the lecture is intended as a learning opportunity for all.

“Bisexuality is still fairly invisible, stigmatized and misunderstood — even in gay and lesbian communities — so those who attend can expect to learn more strategies that bi-activists and allies use to struggle against these problems,” Hale said.