Interview of Tanya Asapansa-Johnson Walker

Tanya Asapansa-Johnson Walker is a co-founder of the New York Trans-gender Advocacy Group (NYTAG). Here, she shares her history of LGB and trans activism in New York City. Born on Staten Island, Miss Tanya describes her childhood confronting racism, homophobia, and transphobia along the east coast of the United States before joining the military and relocating to Germany. Upon her return, she moved to New York City, attending college on Staten Island, where she notably led a protest against Staten Island borough president, Guy Molinari, for which she was run off of campus. She also recounts the development of a distinct trans identity, surviving in New York City during the AIDS crisis, the community among homeless, queer and trans people of color in New York City in the 1980s and 90s, and her work as a social service provider and activist.

Date of Interview:

April 2, 2021

Location of Interview:

Tanya's House

Place of birth:

Staten Island, New York


She / Her

Interviewed by

Lorenzo Van Ness

Summary by

Micah Katz