Sgt First Class Angela Brightfeather served in the United States Army Reserve as a Drill Instructor in the 98th Division, 391st Regiment, 1st Army, in Syracuse, N.Y., for 8 years, the last two as the Tactical NCO of the 98th Division Drill Sergeant Academy with the rank of Field First, SFC E-7.
Angela was born in London while her father served in the 96th Army Air Corp Bomber Squadron located in Snetterton Heath. Her mother was British. The family returned to the U.S. when Angela was a small child.
After her service, she founded the first Transgender Support groups in in Upstate New York. She was a founder of the National Transgender Activist Coalition (NTAC), serving as Chairperson of the organization’s Activist Committee. She organized the organization’s Educational Initiatives during ENDA legislation, at HRC events and organized lobbying efforts to Congress.
Angela was awarded the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE) Trinity Award for Outstanding Service to the Transgender Community and was voted the most influential LGBT Person in North Carolina by Q-Notes.
She has spoken and lectured at many colleges and universities and advised the Syracuse University Psychiatric Clinic, Family Counseling Group.
She joined with Monica Helms to organize and found the Transgender American Veterans Association (TAVA) and inspired the Transgender Veterans March to the Vietnam Veterans Wall. She co-organized TAVA’s first survey of Transgender Veterans. She also participated in corrections and implementation of President Obama’s Directive, instructing that all Transgender Veterans will be treated with dignity and respect.
Angela resides in Cary, North Carolina with her spouse of 42 years, Gail. She has two children and eight grandchildren and is the oldest of five brothers.