Since late July, Advocate.com has slowly been releasing their annual ’40 Under 40′, a list of 40 exemplary people with notable and emerging voices within the LGBT community. This year, transgender model Carmen Carrera, who rose to fame from her time on RuPaul‘s Drag Race Season 3, joins the ranks of 39 other amazing LGBT activists.
Carmen, who revealed herself as transgender in 2012, has recently faced a lot of criticism for her very public opposition to the use of the word “tranny.” Although the dust from that debate has mostly settled, there are still many RuPaul’s Drag Race fans (among others) who have not forgiven her for renouncing RuPaul, who took a stance in defense of the term. The infamous debate has cleverly been titled “Trannygate” by many who publically spoke about the issue.
No matter whether you love her or hate her for the stance she took in Trannygate, one fact remains true: Carmen Carrera has been a important model of equality for the transgender community over the last year. From the petition started by fans to allow her to become the first transgender Victoria’s Secret model, to her upcoming VH1 television series ‘TransAmerica,’ Advocate touches on all of the reasons why Carmen deserves this title in a must-read feature story entitled ‘Carmen Carrera Is a Model for Trans Equality‘.