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The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest LGBTQ organization, has recently named Lowell native Ashton Mota as a member of the 2020 class of Human Rights Campaign Foundation Youth Ambassadors, joining 12 other LGBTQ advocates across the country.

“This program is designed to amplify the important voices of teens and young adults, and engage them in helping the HRC Foundation improve the lives of LGBTQ youth at home, at school, at work and beyond,” said HRC Foundation’s Director of the Youth Well-Being Program, Dr. Vincent Pompei. “These young people have real and meaningful contributions to make to HRC’s work and to their communities.”

As Youth Ambassadors, these LGBTQ advocates will represent the HRC Foundation, adding their voices and experiences to raise awareness about the most pressing concerns facing LGBTQ youth. They also bring awareness to programs that promote well-being for LGBTQ youth, including All Children – All FamiliesWelcoming Schools and Youth and Campus Engagement.

Ashton Mota Biography

Ashton Mota is a 14-year-old Black Dominican-American student who came out to his mother and school community as transgender two years ago. Ever since, he has advocated for his rights to use his preferred name, play on the boy’s basketball team, use the bathroom and locker room he feels the safest in and be his authentic self. Ashton began his advocacy by speaking publicly at GLSEN Massachusetts’ Spring conference about his experience. Today, he is his school’s GSA’s founder and president and the co-chair of the Northeast Region Safe Schools Program.

Ashton is also a strong supporter of the campaign ‘Yes on 3,’ Freedom for All Massachusetts. He and his mother have been supporting the campaign by speaking about the ballot this past election and how it would have impacted families like his. Ashton seeks to create strong communities, but most importantly, to maintain them. He believes that together, we can create an environment that will help foster love, acceptance and partnership among our LGBTQ youth. Ashton is committed to creating strong partnerships, building allyships, and continuing to demonstrate that we are strong—that we are resilient.

More information on the program and the rest of the Class of 2020 members can be found here.