After decades of living my life on terms other than my own, of running from my true self, of enduring waves of shame, guilt and denial, I decided enough was enough. I knew I had to stand up and face my truth and embrace my innate uniqueness, my humanness. So I did the only thing I could do–I came out.
Since that time I have dedicated a large part of my life to giving back and paying it forward. I believe the only way meaningful change can occur is if we embody that change and live it fully and proudly each and every day. That is why I do what I do. It is the only way I know how to live my life. That is what it means to . . . Follow Your Heart.
As the founder/owner of Follow Your Heart, LLC, Stephanie is an internationally recognized and sought after speaker, workshop presenter, trainer and workplace diversity consultant. She is a recognized leader in the vanguard of the transgender workplace equality and education movement. Her keynote speeches interactive workshop presentations focus on how to create transgender inclusive workplaces and evolving the transgender workplace inclusion narrative by moving companies and organizations “from policy to practice.”
Her consulting engagements involve workplace inclusive policy development for transgender workers – be they transition guidelines and/or trans-inclusive health benefits and basic education on the transgender community in general.
Her speeches and talks are told through the lens of her own successful personal story of transition in Corporate America and her continuing life’s journey. Her mission is “to change hearts and minds by creating a more diverse world through education, inspiration and motivation.”
She speaks regularly to Fortune 500 companies, colleges, churches and community groups throughout the United States and internationally.
- Corporate Vice President at a large New York-based financial services company since 2000.
- Successfully transitioned on the job in October of 2005, working collaboratively with the company’s human resources executives to establish a process for successful workplace transitions for transgender employees
- First appointive officer to transition in the nearly 200-year history of the company
- Championed the modification of both the Company’s EEO and non-discrimination policies to include gender identity & gender expression.
- Spearheaded the formation of the first-ever LGBT employee network group in the history of the company in May of 2007.
- Senior International Marketing Manager – AT&T (1990 – 2000)
- Stephanie’s professional career spans over 30 years in marketing, communications and strategic planning.
Board Service & Related Non-Profit Involvement
- The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center of New York, Board member since 2009
- Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund (TLDEF), Board member since 2011
- PFLAG National, Board member since 2014
- International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE), past Board member former Communications Director
- Winslow Street Fund of IFGE, Past Chair
- Oasis Commission of the Episcopal Diocese of Newark, New Jersey, past commissioner
- Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, past member of their Transgender Advisory Committee and LGBT Diversity national trainer
- Pride Center of New Jersey, past facilitator of the transgender support group, TrueSelves
- BA in Communication, University of Delaware
- MBA in Marketing, Fairleigh Dickinson University
- Graduate of the prestigious UCLA Anderson School of Management’s LGBT Leadership Institute.
Selected Media Appearances
- Huffington Post Live
- In-studio guest, “#WMN” show
- Guest panelist, Transgender Parenting
- Guest panelist, Coming Out Over the Holidays
- Huffington Post Gay Voices – featured blogger
- Diversity Best Practices
- Webinar: Out and Up: The Transformative Power of LGBT-Friendly Workplace in Unleashing Productivity and Creativity
- Feature Article – “Getting the Language Right: The Transgender Conversation”
- The Advocate.com – guest op-ed contributor
- GLAAD.org – contributing blog author
- HRC.org – Featured blog author for National Coming Out Day, 2014
- New Republic – featured video interview in The Next Republic series, contributor to “Welcome to America’s Next Great Civil Rights Struggle” special edition
- IntegrityUSA.org – contributing writer, “Walking With Integrity” blog
- TueNight.com – contributor
- Associated Press article on transgender health benefits equality (appeared nationally in print and on the Internet)
- Featured in an episode of the GLAAD Media Award-nominated documentary series, Sex Change Hospital, which aired in the United States on the Women’s Entertainment (We) cable network, as well as in the United Kingdom, Brazil and Sweden in 2007 and 2008
She resides in Cliffside Park, NJ with her partner Mari.
Connect with Me on Social Media
Facebook: Follow Your Heart, LLC
LinkedIn: Stephanie Battaglino, MBA & Follow Your Heart, LLC