1 January 2012
Diva Magazine (p.74-75)

Activists, writers, musicians, filmmakers, politicians, organisers and artists – DIVA rounds up the women set to make a difference in 2012.

Ludi Valentine was one of the “zombies” arrested during the royal wedding last summer. She organizes successful conferences on polyamory, such as OpenCon, and writes on the topic regularly at polytical.org. She has run sex workshops for London’s Sh! women’s store and helped provide inclusivity resources for the Department of Medicine at Cambridge University.

Laurie Penny is a bisexual, Oxford-educated journalist involved in politics, feminism and LGBT activism. She pens for the Independent, the Guardian and New Statesman. Penny’s blog, Penny Red, was launched in 2007 and was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize in 2010. She published her first books, Meat Market: Female Flesh Under Capitalism and Penny Red: Notes from the New Age of Dissent, in 2011.

Dana Jade is a feisty Trinidadian expat who moved to London in 2002. Since then she’s joined the alternative all-female choir Gaggle, and is forging a promising career as a gutsy solo rocker. She is also the founder and force behind Clit Rock, an independent organization fighting female genital mutilation through live music events.

The L Project is a collective of musicians set up by Georgey Payne of Greymatter with the intention of combatting homophobic bullying by raising awareness and funds for charities such as Stonewall and Diversity Role Models. Keep an ear out for their upcoming single, Breathing Life.

Sarah Brown is a Cambridge City councillor and the only open trans lesbian politician in Britain. She came in at number 28 on the Independent on Sunday’s Pink List 2011 and has earned praise for her commitment to improving healthcare for trans folk and eradicating transphobia and discrimination in transitional services.

Ariel Silvera is a Dublin-based, trans woman from Argentina. She edits online LGBT magazine BoLT, and her podcasts appear at queerswithbeers.wordpress.com. She’s also part of Revolutionary Anarchafeminist Group, a women’s publishing collective, and frequently holds workshops on trans equality and inclusion. Silvera is active in the Irish pro-choice movement.

Cambell X is the director and writer behind upcoming British film Stud Life, a “queer urban guerrilla” movie about sex and friendship, set in the black butch and femme scene in London, and starring T’Nia Miller, Robyn Kerr, Kyle Treslove and Simon Savory. Details of Campbell’s career in film and TV, can be found on her website, BlackmanVision.com

Phyll Opoku-Gyimah is co-founder of the UK Black Pride event and a recipient of Stonewall’s Black LGBT Community Award. Opoku-Gyimah is a civil servant by day and campaigns for equality in the workplace through her seat on the TUC race relations committee. She also made the Pink List 2011.

Grace Petrie Leicester musician and political protest singer Petrie earned her spurs on the folk-punk scene in 2010 when Billy Bragg hand-picked her to play at Glastonbury. She’s toured with Emmy The Great and Josie Long, and is set to become a well-know protest voice in the year ahead.

Ellie Harrison This Glasgow-based artist bagged a Converse/Dazed Emerging Artists Award in 2011. Harrison is an outspokenly political artist, and campaigns with RMT, TSSA, Campaign for Better Transport and Climate Rush. Harrison gives nationwide lectures and classes, and will debut a weekly radio show with artist Oliver Braid at Desk Chair Discos in the new year.

Jen Long presents the Introducing show on BBC Radio One. She’s a busy girl, promoting shows, DJing, running the record label Kissability and penning for the likes of the NME, Line of Best Fit, Artrocker and the BBC Reviews website.

Pratibha Parmar is a British Asian filmmaker and activist. She’s collaborated with artists, activists and musicians, and is currently busy producing a documentary on the Colour Purple author – Alice Walker: Beauty In Truth, which features Danny Glover, Howard Zinn and Stephen Spielberg.