Day 1, Downtown Campus

Naoufel Testaouni (He/Him)

Naoufel Testaouni (He/Him)

Co-Founder & CEO at QueerTech

Challenges & barriers facing 2SLGBTQ+ Communities in the Workplace

Abstract: Creating an open and inclusive work environment that attracts and retains diverse talent has never been more important to remain competitive in the market. 2SLGBTQ+ people working in North America still experience many challenges and barriers to entering and advancing their careers in the tech industry. Despite progress being made toward wholly inclusive and diverse workplace environments, there is more to be done regarding stigmatization, higher risk of harassment, intersectionality, and lack of visibility, especially for Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming people. The overall goal of this talk is to increase awareness and understanding of the challenges and barriers facing members of the 2SLGBTQ+ communities in the workplace and to provide practical steps for creating more inclusive and supportive work environments.

Dr. Anna Marie LaChance (She/Her)

Dr. Anna Marie LaChance (She/Her)

Nanocomposites: Bringing Queerness into STEM Education

Bio: Dr. Anna Marie LaChance is a chemical engineer and STEM educator with numerous professional and creative projects. Through her teaching work, podcast (Rule 63), social media presence (Substack & TikTok), and local political organizing, she is an advocate for abolitionist engineering education and intersectional transfeminism.
Anna transitioned at the age of 22 while earning her PhD in Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Connecticut. Throughout her academic career, she has mentored dozens of women and gender-diverse people in STEM, empowering them to bring their “full selves” into their engineering work. She has been widely recognized for her research, teaching, and mentorship.
Anna is a Lecturer for the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where she offers courses on chemical engineering process control, polymer processing, and sustainability.
TikTok, Instagram, & Twitter, Mastodon: @ThatAnnaMarie

Day 2, MacDonald Campus

Dr. Dr. Alex Ketchum (She/Her)

Dr. Alex Ketchum (She/Her)

A History of LGBTQIA2S+ Student, Faculty, and Staff Activism at McGill and Why These Stories Matter

Bio: Since 2018, Dr. Alex Ketchum has been the Faculty Lecturer of the Institute for Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies of McGill University. She is the Director of the Just Feminist Tech and Scholarship Lab and the organizer of Disrupting Disruptions: The Feminist and Accessible Publishing, Communications, and Tech Speaker and Workshop Series. Her work integrates food, environmental, technological, and gender history. Ketchum's first peer-reviewed book, Engage in Public Scholarship!: A Guidebook on Feminist and Accessible Communication (Concordia University Press, 2022), examines the power dynamics that impact who gets to create certain kinds of academic work and for whom these outputs are accessible.Coinciding with the fiftieth anniversary of the trailblazing restaurant Mother Courage of New York City, Ketchum's second book, Ingredients for Revolution: A History of American Feminist Restaurants, Cafes, and Coffeehouses (2022), is the first history of the more than 230 feminist and lesbian-feminist restaurants, cafes, and coffeehouses that existed in the United States from 1972 to the present. Ketchum's interest in past imaginings of utopia through business creation and the implementation of communications technologies has guided her new research and third book project on historically contextualizing the relationship between feminist ethics and AI. You can find out more about her other writings, podcasts, zines, exhibitions, and more at .

CRBS Keynote Speaker

Dr. Lee Penn (They/Them)

Dr. Lee Penn (They/Them)

Working to support students and colleagues with marginalized identities

Abstract: Lee Penn is a Professor and the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Chemistry at the University of MN - Twin Cities and has taught general and upper level chemistry courses, seminars about bikes and nanotechnology, and more. Prof. Penn’s research group works with nanoparticles, focusing on their synthesis and characterization, how they behave in environmental systems, and how to synthesize materials using the principles of green chemistry. In this lecture, Prof. Penn will discuss their path from undergrad to professor and their LGBTQIQ+ identities. They will incorporate some effective allyship and inclusive professional practices.

Bio: Lee has been working with nanoparticles since the early 90s, and the Penn group’s research foci include understanding the fundamental formation and growth mechanisms of nanoparticles, how nanoparticles are involved in chemical transformations in the environment, and elucidating the link between magnetism and the physical and chemical properties of nanoparticles. Lee is a professor and also the Director of Undergraduate Studies for the Chemistry Department at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. They have served as a chemistry advisor, faculty advisor to several student groups, direct mentor to undergraduates through research projects and mentoring programs and developed innovative teaching techniques. Lee Penn has taught honors general chemistry; general chemistry; freshman seminars focusing on garbage, bikes, and nanotechnology; Nanoparticle Science and Engineering (co-taught with faculty from several departments); Green Chemistry; and Materials Characterization. Lee oversees a research group of eleven graduate students and several undergraduates - all working on various topics involving nano and/or sustainability and/or the environment.