Tylene has been a Pacific Northwest resident in Oregon and Washington for most of her life and has called Central Washington home for the last seventeen years. After moving to Ellensburg, Washington in 2001, she spent fourteen years working in the mental health field where she began as a temporary file clerk and later developed and facilitated a Clubhouse model of psychosocial rehabilitation for those with severe and persistent mental illness. While working full time, she also attended Central Washington University where she graduated in 2007. Tylene prefers a mountain lake to an ocean beach, a campfire with friends over a night on the town, and visiting new places with old histories. Most of all, she values and appreciates her family and her friends above all else, and the relationships she has developed along the way. Tylene first became involved with Pride Foundation after receiving a grant in 2003 to start her V.O.I.C.E.S. program which offered transgender education and support in rural communities. Tylene has always been open in discussing her life as a transgender woman. As she often says when speaking of the challenges facing transgender and gender non-conforming people living in rural areas, “I had to leave the life I love to find a love for life.” Tylene believes through education and support, all people will eventually have the opportunity to live as who they are, where they are. After receiving her grant, Tylene volunteered off and on over the years reviewing scholarship and grant applications, became a sustaining donor. She joined the Board in 2013 and accepted a regional staff position in 2017. In her position, Tylene hopes to both continue and grow the Pride Foundation legacy of giving to expand opportunities and advance full equality for all LGBTQ people across the Northwest.

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