Professor Jennifer Finney Boylan has become the first transgender woman to serve as co-chair of US LGBT media advocacy group, GLAAD.

“GLAAD’s commitment to the trans community is real and unwavering,” said Professor Boylan. “As transgender people continue to advocate for basic legal protections and recognition, the work that the staff of GLAAD is leading to proactively share stories of transgender people through the media is a game changer.”

Earlier this year the charity dropped its full name ‘The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation’ as a show of commitment to all the work that it does on behalf of transgender people, bi people and straight allies of America’s LGBT community.

Professor Boylan is a renowned academic, accomplished writer, and civil rights advocate. Her 13-book repertoire of short stories, novels, and young adult books includes her memoir She’s Not There: a Life in Two Genders—the first bestselling work by a transgender American.

She frequently appears on US television as a commentator and often writes in The New York Times. Professor Boylan has taught English at Colby College, Maine, since 1988. In recent years, the mother of two has won the Lambda Literary Foundation Prize, University of Massachusetts’ “Stonewall Legacy” prize, and the title of “Professor of the Year” at Colby.

Steve Warren, an entertainment lawyer, has also been appointed co-chair of GLAAD’s National Board of Directors.

Barclays chief Anthony Watson, currently the only openly gay CIO of a Fortune 100 company in the world, became the first gay British citizen to join the board of GLAAD earlier this month.