Cate McGregor AM appointed as Patron of Kaleidoscope Human Rights Foundation

Kaleidoscope Cate McGregor AM Kaleidoscope Human Rights Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation working to promote and protect the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people in the Asia Pacific region, has announced that Group Captain Cate McGregor, the highest ranking transgender woman in the Australian Defence Force, has been appointed as a patron alongside The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG.

On accepting this appointment, Cate McGregor said: “There is much work to be done to advance the human rights of LGBTI people within the Asia Pacific and I have been hugely impressed with the work that the Kaleidoscope Human Rights Foundation is doing in this area.”

“I am delighted to be associated with such a wonderful organisation and look forward to working with Kaleidoscope to advocate for the rights of LGBTI people in our region.”

Group Captain Cate McGregor is the highest-ranking transgender individual in the Australian Defence Force and is also a well known cricket commentator and author. Formerly known as Malcolm McGregor, she transitioned in 2012, with the full support of Chief of Army, Lieutenant General David Morrison AO, for whom she was at the time the speechwriter and strategic adviser.

Morrison “refused to accept her resignation when she went public”. The army allowed her time off during 2012, in order to manage the transition and write a memoir, An Indian Summer of Cricket published in November 2012. McGregor is a Member of the Order of Australia in the Military Division for “exceptional service to the Australian Army as the Director of the Land Warfare Studies Centre”.

McGregor has been a cricket commentator and political columnist for The Australian, and cricket writer for The Spectator, and currently Australian Financial Review. In November 2015, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk named McGregor, Queenslander of the Year. She now goes in the running to be the 2016 Australian of the Year – to be announced on Australia Day next year.

Associate Professor Paula Gerber, President of Kaleidoscope commented: “We are honoured that Cate McGregor has agreed to be co-patron of the Kaleidoscope Human Rights Foundation, alongside Michael Kirby. Her appointment is an important reminder that our work covers all genders and sexualities.”

“Unfortunately, there are still several countries in our region where laws and societal attitudes severely inhibit the rights of transgender people to live a life of dignity and equality. We look forward to working with Cate and local activists to ensure freedom from discrimination for all people of diverse genders and sexualities throughout the Asia Pacific region.”

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Image: Cate McGregor AM (supplied)