CHICAGO – In collaboration with Chicago Therapy Collective, the 40th Ward, 48th Ward, and community stakeholders, State Senator Mike Simmons attended an honorary street-naming ceremony commemorating Catalpa Avenue between Clark Street and Ashland Avenue as “Elise Malary Way.”

“Today would have been Elise’s 34th birthday. She was a beautiful, gentle person who fought fiercely for the rights of all Black trans and LGBTQ+ people,” said Simmons (D-Chicago). “Commemorating her life and legacy will continue beyond today.”

Elise Malary was a dedicated LGBTQ+ activist who left an indelible mark on those around her. She was committed to advocating for Black trans women and other vulnerable members of the community. Elise Malary Way serves as a symbol of LGBTQ+ inclusion and preserves Malary’s legacy of inspiring future generations to continue advocating for LGBTQ+ rights and social justice.

Malary, a prominent Black trans woman in the 7th District, tragically died in May 2022 and is remembered for being a founding member of the Chicago Therapy Collective, a dedicated LGBTQ+ advocate and for her compassion and ability to bring people together.

“This honorary street naming preserves her deep love and fierce dedication to the community she served,” said Simmons. “It also holds a deeper significance as a rallying cry for collective action – calling on all of us to carry forward Elise's legacy by actively advocating for the rights and safety of our transgender and gender non-conforming community.”