Chase Strangio ’10

If you can’t go to the bathroom, you can’t go to school or have a job.

Chase Strangio ’10

As deputy director for transgender tustice with the ACLU’s LGBT & HIV Project, Chase Strangio is one of the nation’s foremost experts on transgender rights. Chase has served as lead counsel or among those on the top legal teams for whistleblower Chelsea Manning, who came out as trans while in military custody; for the challenge to North Carolina’s notorious bathroom bill; for the challenge to the Trump administration’s trans military ban; and the case of Aimee Stephens, which led to the US Supreme Court’s historic 2020 decision that the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects gay, lesbian, and transgender employees from discrimination based on sex. For all of this and more, Time magazine named Chase to its list of the 100 Most Influential People of 2020.

“I went to law school to do this kind of work,” says Chase. “Becoming a lawyer was part of situating myself in ways that could be helpful to the people I care about.”

When it comes to the restroom fight, Chase sees the issue in terms of the right to exist in public life. “If you can’t go to the bathroom, you can’t go to school or have a job,” says Chase, who came out as trans during law school. “You can’t go to the movies or a restaurant. This is really a question of whether or not as a society we’re going to let trans people participate and be part of our social fabric.”


Peter Cicchino Youth Project, Urban Justice Center, New York, New York

On his first co-op, Chase was involved in direct legal services with homeless and street-involved youth, including on issues related to public benefits, immigration and housing.

  • Ending the Prison Industrial Complex
  • National Lawyers Guild
  • Queer Caucus

Sylvia Rivera Law Project, New York, New York

Chase worked with staff attorneys representing trans individuals in prison and jail.

  • Bioethics and the Law
  • Federal Courts and the Federal System
  • Gender and Sexuality Law

Legal Aid Society, New York, New York

Working side by side with public defenders, Chase participated in all aspects of criminal proceedings, including arraignments and trials.


Sylvia Rivera Law Project, New York, New York

For his final co-op, Chase returned to SRLP, which had offered him a post-grad job.

After Graduation

Sylvia Rivera Law Project, New York

With a prestigious Equal Justice Works Fellowship, Chase spent two and a half years providing direct representation to trans individuals with psychiatric disabilities who were in prison and jail.


Deputy Director for Transgender Justice, ACLU’s LGBT & HIV Project, New York, New York


One of the nation’s most creative and committed advocates for trans rights.