PROUD Family Center event to feature the Governor at renaming
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy will join Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Somerset at an event October 30, 2019. The PROUD Family Health Center in Somerville has been renamed. It was the first center in the state offering specialized primary medical care services to the LGBTQ community. The center will be renamed in memory of transgender rights activist, Barbra “Babs” Casbar Siperstein. The LGBTQ advocate fought for legislation allowing residents to change their gender on their birth certificate without providing proof of gender-confirming surgery.
Siperstein, a native of Jersey City, became the first openly transgender member of the Democratic National Committee in 2009. She served on the DNC’s executive committee from 2011 to 2017 and was a superdelegate for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton at the DNC Convention in 2016. She led efforts to include transgender rights in legislation concerning anti-bullying, bias crimes and employment, housing and public accommodations non-discrimination as well as advocated for a ban on conversion therapy and ending discrimination in health care.
In 2018, shortly before Siperstein’s death at age 76, New Jersey passed legislation in her name that enables residents to change their gender on their birth certificate without providing proof of gender-confirming surgery.
Tonight, many speakers and guests will join Governor Murphy. They include: Barry H. Ostrowsky, President and Chief Executive Officer, RWJBarnabas Health and Tony Cava, President and Chief Executive Officer, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset, an RWJBarnabas Health facility. Trina Parks, MHA, FACHE, SVP, Corporate Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer will be in attendance.
Loretta Weinberg, New Jersey State Senate Majority Leader who will be presented with the Babs Siperstein Inspiring Progress Award. Sen. Weinberg, who represents the 37th legislative district, has been a leading voice for LGBTQ citizens throughout her nearly 30-year career in the NJ legislature. She co-sponsored the Babs Siperstein Law.
Garden State Equality will be presented with the Babs Siperstein Advocacy Award.
Sanofi North America Inclusion & Diversity and Equal Employment Department will be presented with the Babs Siperstein Corporate Pride Award. Based in Bridgewater, Sanofi has been nationally recognized by DiversityInc as one of its “Top Companies for LGBT Employees” based on its efforts to hire, retain and promote LGBT individuals
The awards ceremony and renaming will be held at The Palace at Somerset Park, 333 Davidson Ave., in Somerset starting at 6 p.m.