Jody L. Aldrade
Scholar Class - 2010
Born in upstate New York, Jody Andrade moved to Syracuse, fell into retail management and after a while began asking the well-worn question “Is this all there is?” That question in many forms has pursued her through the following two decades. First across the country to Denver and into Metropolitan State College of Denver where she founded the Feminist Alliance and organized the first National Coming Out Day celebration on campus. Off campus, she was a founding volunteer with the Anti-Violence Project, a LGBT victim’s assistance organization, of which she later became the first paid Director. After working with LGBT victims of crime for three years, her motivating questions changed to “Is this all I can do to change things?” With an eye toward systemic changes, Jody went to the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey Institute for Public Affairs for graduate school where she focused on Gender, Policy and Development. Her studies were augmented with a summer studying housing, human rights, and Arabic at the University of Birzeit Ramallah, West Bank and Palestine. Back in the U.S., she was awarded a congressional fellowship from the Women’s Research and Education Institute—she completed this fellowship in the late Senator Paul Wellstone’s office working on immigration and civil rights issues. After leaving Washington, DC, Jody first worked with the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board, a collaboration of public and private agencies serving youth and then with the Maryland Governor’s Office for Children, Youth and Families as a child welfare and maltreatment analyst. Believing that change occurs from multiple angles, during this time she also founded the Charm City Kitty Club, a queer variety cabaret that won a Lesbian Theater Award from Curve Magazine and a mention in the New York Times. With a mission to create a unique social and cultural niche for lesbian, dyke, bisexual, transgender and transsexual women and all of our allies, the Kitty Club has hosted over a hundred artists & performers and reached well over 5,000 audience members. On June 1, 2010, Jody starts an accelerated BS degree in Nursing at Johns Hopkins University. She looks forward to combining her policy skills with nursing to provide both systemic and individual change for fragile communities, families and people.