Daisy Pelletier



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*Included at the end of the interview is an original poem read by Maya.

Maya Williams is a 25-year-old Black, queer, trans, Christian person who grew up in North Carolina. Ey moved to Maine to attend grad school at the University of New England. They worked at Maine Inside Out as an intern while at the University of New England. She has also worked at Equality Maine, and now works at Maine Trans Net. Her Christian faith is important to her, and organizations like ChIME (Chaplaincy Institute of Maine), and interfaith organization that educations and ordains chaplains, and The BTS Center (Bangor Theological Seminary), an organization that focuses on the intersection of spiritual leadership and ecological imagination, have helped her find religious community. Trans rights are important to Maya, and ey tell us about how bills introduced or passed in the Maine Legislature this year (2021) affected em.

Maya was named the Portland Poet Laureate this year. They are the youngest person to become the Poet Laureate, and the first Black person as well. The arts are an important part of Maya’s life. She talks about various arts programs and venues, Port Veritas, a poetry open mic, Dying Laughing, a video series, Space Gallery, Speak About It, a theater group focused on consent education, and the Maine Center for Electronic Music.

Please cite as: Querying the Past: LGBTQ Maine Oral History Project Collection, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer+ Collection, Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine, University of Southern Maine Libraries.

For more information about the Querying the Past: Maine LGBTQ Oral History Project, please contact Dr. Wendy Chapkis.


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USM Special Collections


Portland, Maine


Trans, transgender, Black, Christian, Maine, faith, ChIME, The BTS Center, religion, trans rights, queer, Equality Maine, coming out, Maine Trans Net, human rights, gender identity, Speak About It, Maine Center for Electronic Music, Maine Inside Out, poetry, Portland Poet Laureate, Port Veritas, Dying Laughing, interfaith, Maine Human Rights Act, Maine Youth Action Network, Space Gallery, University of New England


History of Gender | Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies | Oral History | Women's Studies

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Williams, Maya



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