Announcing 2019 Lavender Graduation Keynote Speaker: Joy Messinger (UNC 2010)

Announcing 2019 Lavender Graduation Keynote Speaker: Joy Messinger (UNC 2010)

We are honored that Joy Messinger has accepted our invitation to address over thirty graduating LGBTIQA+ or allied students, their affirming loved ones, and friends of the LGBTQ Center next Sunday at Carolina's 13th annual Lavender Graduation.

Joy Messinger, MSW, MPH is a Chicago-based reproductive, birth, and social justice advocate who earned her MPH in Health Behavior and Health Education from the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, and a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership from the UNC School of Social Work in 2010.

She currently serves as Program Officer for Third Wave Fund, a national feminist foundation supporting the vision and leadership of young women, low-income communities, and transgender, gender non-conforming, intersex, non-binary, and queer youth. In her role, Joy oversees Third Wave's grantmaking programs and supports fundraising, communications, and philanthropic advocacy. She is also an adjunct instructor, currently teaching intersectional social work practice with LGBTQIA individuals and communities at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration.

​Joy organizes within feminist, LGBTQ, adoptee, and Asian American communities in Chicago and across the country. Currently, she is the Treasurer and Social Media Manager for Invisible to Invincible: Asian Pacific Islander Pride of Chicago, where she works with other members to do education, community building, social support, and advocacy within LGBTQ Asian American communities. Joy is also a DONA-trained birth doula and has provided doula services through Chicago Volunteer Doulas to ensure that everyone has access to the birth they want.


Joy is an experienced educator and facilitator whose classes, workshops, panel discussions, and guest lectures have been attended by thousands of teachers, young people, youth workers, healthcare providers, college students, higher ed administrators, and community organizers in Chicago, throughout Illinois, and across the country. In addition to her community education with the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health and Invisible to Invincible: Asian Pacific Islander Pride of Chicago, she has also been an adjunct instructor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a teaching assistant at the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill.