Cecilia Gentili, a towering queer presence in New York City
The transgender rights activist dies at 52
By TOI Desk Report February 7, 2024 Update on : February 7, 2024
Actress Cecilia Gentili, who was a name synonymous with fierce advocacy, vibrant artistry, and an unwavering commitment to justice, died at the age of 52.
The Argentina-born Cecilia Gentili breathed her last peacefully on February 6; it was announced in a post to her Instagram account the same day, reports New York Daily News.
According to the Instagram post with a caption of a photo around 3:00pm, “Our beloved Cecilia Gentili dies this morning to continue watching over us in spirit. Please be kind with each other and love one another with ferocity.”
She dedicated her life to advocacy, storytelling, and empowering New York’s transgender community.
Cecilia Gentili navigated the complexities of growing up transgender in Argentina to become a prominent voice in the LGBTQ+ movement in New York City.
Her life story is a tapestry woven with resilience, passion, and an impactful legacy that continues to inspire.
Cecilia arrived in the US from Argentina in pursuit of a safer life, facing the challenges of being an undocumented transgender woman.
She navigated the difficult path of sex work, challenging the associated risks and hardships, including arrests and immigration detention.
Despite these tremendous obstacles, she fought to access recovery services and ultimately won shelter.
Cecilia, who committed to uplifting the transgender community through her numerous initiatives, played a pivotal role in founding Decrim NY, advocating for the decriminalization of sex work.
Cecilia established Trans Equity Consulting in 2019. She and her team focused on helping organizations connect with and support trans and queer communities through consulting.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L. Bragg, Jr, said Cecilia was an extraordinary advocate and an invaluable advisor and challenged us to reconsider our policies with wisdom, honesty, and good humor.
Moreover, Attorney Alvin worked with her to make the DA’s Office more responsive to and more supportive of witnesses and survivors of all gender identities.
During a demonstration organized by Jewish Voice for Peace to demand a ceasefire in Gaza, she along with hundreds were arrested at Grand Central Station NYC in October last year.