Vale Kathy Anne Noble (1934-2015)

To have Trans people recognised as people, and not freaks. To have laws that are easy to comprehend and that make life easier for Trans people.” Kathy Anne Noble

The Alliance acknowledges with sadness, the passing of prominent trans* activist and community member Kathy Anne Noble.

In red: Kathy Noble at the first national intersex, trans, and gender diversity roundtable (2012).

In red: Kathy Noble at the first national intersex, trans, and gender diversity roundtable (2012).

Kathy speaks at Health in Difference 2013

Kathy was a tireless and courageous campaigner for trans* equality whose work spanned decades and continents. Many will mourn her passing and feel her absence acutely. Kathy was a prominent member of the trans* community in Australia and an elder to many young activists, community workers, and trans* people. Born in 1934, Kathy lived through tremendous social change, and we celebrate her life achievements.

Kathy was one of the first individuals to join the Alliance as a member. She was often among the first community activists to identify an emerging equality issue, and was a frequent contributor to Alliance consultations. In 2012, Kathy was part of the first national Roundtable on intersex, trans, and gender diversity, convened by the Alliance.

At the age of 78, Kathy spoke memorably in the ‘Healthy Ageing & Aged Care’ plenary at the Health in Difference 2013 conference (see link below). Listening now to the recording of Kathy’s plenary reveals her palpable wisdom, drawn from her own lived experience. She speaks of the importance of bravery in the face of fear and discrimination – an experience common to many who have been oppressed.

Kathy’s work for social change manifested in deeply personal contributions to community and individual welfare. She opened her home to women having gender affirmation surgery before and after their surgical procedure, taking them to their initial check-up and accompanying them to and from hospital. She also set up a support group to help guide and inform people through their medical gender affirmation process. Kathy’s care and generosity no doubt enabled many people to have greatly improved health and wellbeing during and after surgery. Kathy’s work paved the way for future generations of trans* people in Australia.

Left: Kathy Anne Noble and Sharon Jones

From Left: Kathy Anne Noble and Sharon Jones

In an interview for Saschas Stories, Kathy described her passion “to have Trans people recognised as people, not as freaks. To have laws that are easy to comprehend and that make life easier for Trans people.”

Kathy was fearless and unwavering in speaking truth to power, lending her passion and wisdom as a trans* elder to the work of raising awareness and influencing national debate. We remember Kathy for her tenacity, humour, and passion for social justice. We offer our sincere condolences to Kathy’s family and loved ones


Please listen to Kathy speaking at Health in Difference 2013: ‘A trans* persons perspective on ageing & aged care’
http://joy.org.au/hid2013/2013/04/19/plenary-from-discrimination-to-education-to-celebration-part-1/

To read more about her life, visit: http://www.sachas.com/stories/life-stories/kathy-noble/ and http://www.changelingaspects.com/