Friday, December 6, 2013

Ackerman Institute's Gender and Family Project hosts a “Night of A Thousand Genders”!

On Monday, December 2, 2013, the Ackerman Institute's Gender and Family Project hosted an incredible call for action and support of gender variant and gender non-conforming youth in its first ever “Night of A Thousand Genders” celebration at Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater!

The Ackerman Institute's Gender and Family Project took part in a very special evening to honor and celebrate the beauty and resilience of gender variant and gender non-conforming kids and their families. “Acceptance is protection” became the tagline of the evening with over 200+ guests roaring in applause at Jean Malpas’s inspiring speech.  The night was an astounding success with an electric energy felt by one and all.
 Jean Malpas, the Director of the Gender and Family Project, did not mince words when he spoke about the struggle that LGBT kids face in their lives. “Half of LGBT kids still experience negative reactions when they come out at home. 25-40% of homeless youth in NYC are LGBT identified and a quarter of these homeless youth are on the street because they have been kicked out of their homes. We know that family acceptance is a key protective factor. It dramatically decreases chances of mental health issues, school drop-out, substance abuse and suicide. It’s just the best prevention we know of.”

Jean and his production team (which included Manhattan Theater Club producer, Lisa McNulty, Tralen Doler, Ackerman Institute’s Adriana Londono, Topos Graphic’s Roy Rub, video producer Reda Cheraffadine, and committee chair Jane Rennert-Miller) worked tirelessly for the past year to create not only an evening to remember but to give every family with gender non-conforming children a chance to accessible care, love, and opportunities.

Sponsored by Logo TV and Delta Airlines, the event garnered the support of a host of celebrities and became a veritable who's who of the LGBT community. Grammy Award winning composer Stephen Schwartz (of Godspell, Pippin, and Wicked) acted as Honorary Chair for the Night while acclaimed composer-lyricist Lance Horne served as Musical Director.

Jean Malpas, Jane Rennert-Miller, and Roy Rub
Tralen Doler, Jean Malpas, Lisa McNulty

Jean Malpas and Stephen Schwartz
Lance Horne and Jean Malpas

The legendary Olympia Dukakis emceed the evening and talked about her various LGBT roles. “I have played LGBT characters, and have come to understand the power and importance of giving unheard voices and underserved communities the public support they need.”

Olympia Dukakis

The evening’s performers were all LGBT identified and allies committed to the cause.  The powerhouse cast of performers included transgender legends like Our Lady J and Justin Vivian Bond. Telly Leung, of Glee, and Nicholas Ashe gave powerhouse performances. The talented actor Alan Cumming was in attendance and guests were thrilled when the comedienne Joan Rivers made a surprise appearance.

Joan Rivers and Jean Malpas

Telly Leung
Alan Cumming

Our Lady J
Nicholas Ashe

Justin Vivian Bond

Nicho Lowry

Several members of the press and major media outlets took an outstanding interest in “Night of a Thousand Genders”:  Good Morning America, Huffington Post, Playbill, Edge on the Net, Broadway World, Logo TV, New Now Next, Page Six, NY Times, Metro, Getty Images, and NY Social Status all highlighted the night.

Attendees left donning Gender and Family Project buttons wanting to know when they could buy tickets to next year’s event energized to continue the tradition.



Ackerman hosts an exciting workshop on treating and detecting sleep disturbances next week!

Ackerman hosts an exciting workshop on treating and detecting sleep disturbances next week, December 13th, with acclaimed sleep expert and clinical psychologist Ross Levin, Ph.D.!

Sleep issues are rampant in today's culture and detecting and treating sleep disturbances in patients can be life changing to patients. On any given night, 20% of Americans use sleep aides and Americans spend $100 billion on sleep related products each year. Disturbed sleep is a common response to stress and our frenetic 24/7 wired culture with up to 50% of all adults reporting periodic sleep difficulties. The societal costs of disturbed sleep are staggering. Sleep issues are also often at the heart of marital discord. This workshop is designed for mental health workers with little formal training in sleep but who wish to learn how attending to sleep problems can greatly improve their clients' mental and physical health and reduce discord in couples and families. In this course, we'll explore the basics of behavioral sleep medicine including an overview of adequate sleep hygiene practices. Evidence-based treatments for common sleep disorders such as insomnia, hypersomnia (daytime sleepiness) and disturbed dreams will be presented with a particular focus on CBT-I, imagery tools, relaxation-based techniques and mindfulness meditation.

Sleep Therapy in the News:

About Ross Levin
Dr. Ross Levin earned his PhD in Clinical Psychology and is a sleep specialist in private practice in New York City. His work on sleep has been featured in The New York Times, ABC Nightline, NPR, New Yorker Magazine, and CBS News.

Date: Friday, December 13, 2013          
Time:10AM - 4PM       
CE Credits:5
Online Registration