Dana Beyer

Executive Director, Gender Rights Maryland

Dana is a retired eye surgeon who is a candidate for the Maryland state Senate in 2018. She is currently Executive Director of Gender Rights Maryland, the state’s trans political organization which worked the Maryland gender identity bill to passage in 2014. She served a term as a senior adviser for Councilmember Trachtenberg on the Montgomery County Council. She is chair of the national advisory board of Freedom to Work, and writes a weekly column for The Huffington Post. She has served on the Rules Committee of the national Democratic Party, and has twice run for state delegate in Maryland’s District 18. She was inducted into the Montgomery County Human Rights Hall of Fame in 2014, and has served on the county’s Committee on Hate/Violence the past three years. Dana has been an advocate on public health issues, including research on the effects of DES and endocrine disruptors on human sexuality and reproduction, and was lead staffer passing the first county-wide ban of artificial trans fats in the U.S. – a ban that will be extended nationwide in 2018. Dana has been VP of Equality Maryland and Maryland NOW, a Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Governor, a board member of Mobile Med and the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), and is currently Vice Chair of the Civil Rights Coalition of Maryland and a member of the President’s Council of Cornell Women. She served nine years on the board of Keshet, the national Jewish LGBT organization, and ten years on the steering committee of Progressive Neighbors, Montgomery County’s leading progressive advocacy organization, and is currently a director on the national board of A Wider Bridge, building relationships among the Jewish LGBT communities here and abroad. In 2009, she helped organize and co-authored The Dallas Principles. She led the coalitions that passed the Baltimore, Howard and Montgomery County gender identity anti-discrimination laws, and defended the Montgomery County law against the first national right-wing “bathroom bill” attack in 2008. She was a member of the workgroup at the Washington Psychiatric Society that wrote the Gender Dysphoria text for the DSM 5, declassifying being transgender as a mental disorder. She was the first out trans graduate of the Senior Executive Program in State and Local Government at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in 2008. Dana is Regional Advocacy Chair for J Street, the pro-Israel, pro-peace, pro two-state-solution national advocacy group, and also serves on its national Finance Committee. She works in the field of venture capital and the start-up economy in her spare time.