Transgender civil rights activist Ashlee Marie Preston is not afraid to discuss her age. In fact, she's proud of it.
Preston — who some may know after she publicly confronted Caitlyn Jenner — recently turned 34. Instead of throwing a regular party, she used her birthday to highlight how the average life expectancy of black trans women is in their 30s, with different reports indicating it may be as young as 31 or 32. African-American trans women are forced to persevere through racism, transphobia, and misogyny, and many are felled by violence.
To bring attention to the high murder rates of African-American trans women, Preston had a 17x26 cake made with the photos of 77 black trans women under 35 who were murdered; she also made a video explaining her birthday's mission. All of this is part of Preston's #ThriveOver35 initiative, which aims to amplify the struggles of black trans women.
Find out more about #ThriveOver35 on Preston's podcast, Shook with Ashlee Marie Preston, or follow her on Twitter @ashleempreston.