Community Laverne Cox on Building a More Equal and Empathetic Future

by the editorial team at Citi | January 27, 2021

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Laverne Cox, award-winning actress, documentary film producer and equal rights activist, is redefining how transgender and non-binary people are being seen and heard.

Cox sat down with Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, one of the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer media advocacy organizations, for a candid conversation hosted by Citi. Cox spoke about her life’s work and its empowering message of moving beyond gender expectations to live more authentically.

Looking back on her many brave accomplishments, Cox says she wouldn’t be where she is today without her imagination.

Calling it her “savior,” Cox credits her imagination for helping her weather the trials of her childhood, growing up in a single-parent household in Mobile, AL. “I was always very feminine, and I was relentlessly bullied as a child,” recalls the barrier-breaking TV star, filmmaker and equal-rights activist.

“The space of my imagination was where I needed to live as a way to survive, and that is something that I've done my entire life. I've always been an artist, a creative person,” she shares.

Guided by dreams of a bigger world and a better life for herself, Cox has tirelessly built a career filled with firsts, particularly as an openly transgender actress playing breakout on-screen roles. 

Today, Cox is a driving force advocating to end discrimination and violence toward transgender and non-binary people, and helping to reshape perceptions and depictions of those in her community.

“The challenges that we're facing right now are so immense, but if we can begin to imagine individually, and then collectively, a world that is better, I think we can begin to move into a new space,” Cox says. “Then we can get active, but we have to be able to see it. And imagine it.”

Watch the video above for the most powerful moments from their talk.

Being seen is the beginning of everything. That’s why at Citi we’re giving our transgender and non-binary customers the choice to have account profiles and credit cards that match who they are — learn more here.