APTN announces Executive Director

Published June 27, 2018
Language English

Bangkok, Thailand

The Asia Pacific Transgender Network (APTN) is pleased to announce the selection of Joe Wong as its Executive Director effective immediately. The appointment was made after a highly subscribed search and recruitment process.

“We’re exceptionally pleased that Joe has taken on this leadership role,” said Phylesha Brown-Acton, Co-Chair of the Regional Steering Committee. “His broad knowledge of trans issues coupled with years of experience working communities in the region, and past contributions to the growth of the organisation under his leadership make him well positioned to lead us going forward. His passion and commitment to our cause coupled with his deep knowledge of our work will enable him to plan more effectively for the future, expand our programs, and introduce innovative approaches to achieve APTN’s mission — where all trans people are able to live a fulfilling life with dignity.”

Joe joined APTN as a Board Member in 2010 and has been a vital contributor to the work and growth of APTN as well as his leadership in mobilising responses for the trans masculine communities.

“As a long-time advocate with APTN, I have been humbled to witness the impact of our work and be part of a team advocating tirelessly for the community. Together, we are stronger, and it is in this same spirit that I begin my role as Executive Director at APTN. I am excited to work with the exceptional newly put together management team and staff to help the organization meet the challenges of the coming years,” says Joe Wong. “I’m looking forward to bringing the work of the organization to more people in and out of our community and standing up for trans rights.”

Joe had been actively leading in the gay and transgender HIV/ AIDS response well-before he assumed his role at APTN. He has been involved in human rights advocacy efforts and community-based programmings for various marginalised communities including sex workers and people living with HIV. He was the driving force behind the Asia-Pacific Trans Health Blueprint, a regional contextual map outlining key challenges, gaps, and interventions for transgender people in the region. He has written and implemented best practices and continues to prove that there can be no real response to the advancement of transgender health and human rights without the presence, voices, and contributions of transgender people.

“He is a proven change agent who has galvanised communities and partners responses to advance important work for the trans communities using a community-based and participatory approach ” said Mitch Yusof, Co-chair, Regional Steering Committee.

Message from APTN co-founder and RSC member, Hua Boonyapisomparn

On behalf of Asia Pacific Transgender Network Regional Steering Committee and as a co-founder of APTN, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Joe Wong as the new Executive Director of APTN.

Over the last few years, APTN has clearly defined its vision and developed a comprehensive strategy plan to improve the access to rights and health of trans people in Asia and the Pacific. Joe has been an integral part of developing and implementing APTN’s strategic plans and programming since 2014 and has led the organisation to success in improving the quality of lives for our trans sisters and brothers and their communities.

Joe was unanimously recommended and approved by the board to be our next Executive Director after an extensive search and recruitment process. We believe he will make an excellent leader for APTN as a visionary, brave leader, and we believe he has the skills that APTN needs in its next transformative journey.

I want to take this opportunity on behalf of the board of directors to pass on our heartfelt thanks to the community, advisors, partners, and donors who remained patient and supportive in the transitioning process. It would not have been possible without the entire secretariat support, to all staff, most appreciated.

The APTN Regional Steering Committee and Thai Foundation board is delighted to have reached such a successful outcome in its search for an Executive Director and I ask you to join me in extending a warm welcome to Joe as APTN’s Executive Director.