Melissa Kelley Colibrí
Melissa (they/them) is a Deafdisabled Queer mixed latinx non-binary femme. They are a full time accessibility activist in the LGBTQ community of San Diego, CA and are the Accessibility Manager for San Diego Pride, San Diego Trans Pride, and SheFest: ensuring events and meetings are accessible for all people with disabilities including Deaf folks. In addition, they provide free accessibility training workshops for community members, organizers, and agencies that serve LGBTQ folks in San Diego County and give presentations on accessibility nationally. Melissa also co-coordinates access for virtual events hosted by the People’s Collective for Justice and Liberation with another Deaf coordinator. They are on the advisory council for the People’s Collective for Justice and Liberation as well as the advisory board for the Disability Project housed under the Trans Law Center.
Melissa believes inaccessibility is a wide-ranging social justice issue of growing importance as more individuals navigate the world with the experience of disability and especially for those who also experience additional oppression and discrimination. They believe that a sense of community is vital for all people with disabilities including Deaf folks to have within all LGBTQ communities. Community enables us to connect and thrive and organize, it brings feelings of identity and pride as well as kinship and is possible through full accessibility, communication, inter-group relations and networking. Melissa is deeply passionate about breaking isolation through networking, building a support system with ready access to resources, services, and events for all disabled and Deaf members of the LGBTQ community in San Diego and beyond – in person or online.
Melissa holds an AA degree in Alcohol and Other Drugs Studies and a BA degree in Sociology. They are currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Public Health.
When not studying, advocating or coordinating events, Melissa can be found meditating, traveling, hiking, reading, watching hummingbirds, or whisking matcha.