Outspoken Ugandan LGBTQ Rights Advocate Will Offer Remarks Along With Other Noted International Activists, Leaders and Scholars

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — Washington University School of Law will host Dr. Frank Mugisha and several other international LGBTQ activists, leaders and scholars at its upcoming conference, Rights Beyond Borders, the 11th annual Midwest LGBTQ Law Conference, on February 19 and 20. The conference is free and open to the public.

Mugisha, the executive director of Sexual Minorities Uganda, will open the conference in Anheuser-Busch Hall on Friday, February 19, reflecting on his experience as the leader of Uganda’s LGBTQ community during a time of intensely hostile anti-LGBTQ public sentiment in his country. His work has been heralded before. In 2014, he was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, and in 2011, he won the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award. A reception will follow Mugisha’s presentation.

The conference will continue on Saturday, February 20, in Room 276 of the Danforth University Center with presentations highlighting LGBTQ issues in Jamaica and the Caribbean, LGBTQ immigration issues in the United States, and citizenship and transgender identity in Thailand and southeast Asia. The presenters and panelists will include Dane Lewis, the executive director of Jamaica Forum of Lesbians, All-Sexuals, and Gays; Pooja Gehi, the executive director of the National Lawyer’s Guild and former director of immigrant justice for the acclaimed Sylvia Rivera Law Project; Clement Lee, a staff attorney for Immigration Equality; Estrella Sánchez, an activist with the Trans Latina Coalition; and Dredge Byung’chu Kang, a doctoral candidate in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Washington University. Additionally, attendees will have the opportunity to participate in skills-based breakout sessions over lunch.

“We’re thrilled to be hosting Dr. Frank Mugisha,” said conference chair Wolf Smith. “He’s a hero with unimaginable courage, and he’ll certainly give us all a new perspective on the international fight for LGBTQ rights.”

“This whole conference is all about reminding ourselves that even with marriage equality in the United States now, there’s still so much more progress to be fought for and won—both here and abroad,” added Brigid Hurn-Maloney, the President of OUTLaw, the organization for LGBTQ students and allies at Washington University School of Law. “All of our presenters will highlight, each in their own particular way based on their own area of expertise, the ongoing struggle to get governments, cultures, and other institutions to recognize the dignity of LBGTQ people the same way that they do for everybody else.”

The Midwest LGBTQ Law Conference was founded 11 years ago at Washington University School of Law. It has always been and continues to be free and open to the public. Up to 6.0 Missouri CLE credits will be granted to attorneys who attend.

Interested individuals should go to to learn more and register for the conference. They can also email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any questions.