Scholar Class – 2014
Kale Edmiston grew up in the rural Midwest. He is a Ph.D. candidate in neuroscience at Vanderbilt University, where he studies the neuroendocrine system, stress, and social behavior. As part of his dissertation work, he helps run a musical theatre camp for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders. Kale is the first out transgender graduate student at Vanderbilt University and in 2014 was elected president of the Neuroscience Student Organization.
Kale has a longstanding interest in improving health care access for transgender people. He has provided transgender health care trainings to providers across the country since 2004. He is also active in a number of organizing projects related to primary care access for transgender people as part of The Program for LGBTI Health at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). Kale was a plenary speaker at the 2013 Gay and Lesbian Medical Association Annual Meeting, where he spoke about his role in improving transgender patient care as part of LGBTI Health Program at VUMC.
In addition to his interests in neuroscience and health care justice, Kale helps run Nervous Nelly Records, a record label he co-founded in 2011 to promote punk music made by queer musicians. He lives in Nashville with his partner and their two rescue dogs.