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Lived Experience

I grew up in Little Saigon, Orange County, California. As a young person, I witnessed my family juggle competing priorities as refugees from Việt Nam while I struggled with my gender identity, sexual orientation and untreated mental health issues. Like many queer people, I packed up my bags and moved to a major city in search of meaning and community. I spent the next decade in the Sacramento area and Bay Area where I explored, experimented, stumbled, fell (many times) and grew. With the love and guidance of community and professionals, I found myself. Today, I am a proud Vietnamese-American transgender man living with Bipolar 2, Gender Dysphoria and in recovery from an Eating and Feeding Disorder and substance dependence. I also have educational privilege and am able bodied with legal citizenship. When I am not providing clinical services, I am often communing with Mother Nature, practicing Muay Thai and enjoying nutritious food with loved ones.

I have learned a lot throughout my lifetime and I am committed to continue learning. Although we may share identities or experiences, it is my responsibility and desire to remain deeply attuned to your individual and cultural experiences. I welcome any discussion and incorporation of power, privilege and identity into our work together.

Education and Training

I am registered as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with the state of California (CA BBS #89309).

I received my Master's in Social Welfare with the University of California, Berkeley with a concentration in Community Mental Health. In other words, my studies and training focused on working within marginalized and disenfranchised communities. My clinical practicuums included placement with a wraparound program serving foster youth (9 - 24 y/o) and a public health clinic serving low-income adults living with HIV and/or Gender Dysphoria.

Recent Continuing Education and Professional Development:

  • Fundamentals of Exposure-Based Therapy for OCD and Anxiety Disorders on 12/4/2023.

  • Childhood OCD: Symptoms & Assessment on 9/7/2023.

  • Treatment for Suicidal Ideation, Self Harm and Suicide Attempts Among Youth on 4/29/2023.

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Eating Disorders on 4/29/2023.

  • OCD Sexual Content: Navigating Stigmas and Empowering Treatment on 3/29/2023.

  • Exposure Therapy for Eating Disorders on 3/1/2023.

  • Medication Treatment for OCD: What Non-Prescribers Need to Know on 1/30/2023.

Why "Gender Specialist"?

Although there is no governing board who determines who can identify as a “Gender Specialist,” many individuals or organizations seeking gender-specific support use “Gender Specialist” to guide their search. I include “Gender Specialist” in my title due to my extensive training and experience. In addition to co-founding and co-building two Gender Clinics in California, by 2024, I have:​

  • Provided individual therapy and partner/family support to 300_ children and their families, adults and seniors struggling with Gender Dysphoria.

  • Completed 200+ Gender Surgery Letters of Support that were successful in court approval, insurance authorization or appealing insurance denial.

  • Developed and facilitated 200+ gender specialty trainings for providers, para professionals and organizations.

  • Provided clinical program development and management for a public health clinic serving 1,000+ low-income adults and seniors struggling with Gender Dysphoria.

  • Collaborated with numerous gender surgeons on developing surgery access guidelines and best practices when serving public health and community mental health clients.

  • Collaborated with numerous insurance companies on developing and implementing Utilization Management guidelines for treating Gender Dysphoria and accessing gender-affirming care.

From peer-to-peer navigation and direct clinical services to program development, research and advocacy, I have worked in nearly every role in the Gender Affirming Care.

Select Recognitions

  • 2022 Graduation Alumni Ceremony Speaker, School of Social Welfare, University of California, Berkeley.

  • 2019 Recipient, Healthcare Provider of the Year, Project AFFiRM, San Francisco.

  • 2019 Recipient, The Lotus Award: Recognizing Contributions to the LGBTQ and Vietnamese Communities, Vietnamese Rainbow of Orange County (VROC).

  • 2019 Community Rapporteur, United States Professionals Associations for Transgender Health Bi-Annual Conference, Washington, D.C.

  • 2016 Fellow, Human Rights Center, School of Law, University of California, Berkeley.

  • 2016 Fellow, Minority Training Program in Cancer Control Research, Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California, San Francisco.

  • 2014 Recipient, Gay Asian Pacific Alliance Scholarship.

  • 2014 Recipient, Vietnamese Rainbow of Orange County Scholarship.

  • 2012 Recipient, National Undergraduate Social Action Award, Sociologists for Women in Society.

  • 2012 Recipient, Chancellor's Student Achievement Award for Diversity and Community, University of California, Davis.

Select Conference Presentations

  • Clark, D., Do, L., Hatcher-Johnson, Q., Perez, E., & Williams, A.,  (2023). What’s the Real T: Implementing Holistic Programs with Trans and Gender Expansive Communities. Panelist at the National Transgender Health Summit Pre-Conference. University of California, San Francisco, CA.

  • Do, L., Gender Health SF. (2019). Let’s Face It: Racial, Ethnic and Cultural Considerations with Facial Feminization Surgery. Presented at the United States Professional Association for Transgender Health Conference. Washington, D.C.

  • Do, T., & Wenzel, C. (2019). Adult Assessments for Gender Surgeries and Procedures. Presented at National Transgender Health Summit Pre-Conference. University of California, San Francisco, CA.

  • Hyemingway, Z., Chang, S., & Do, L. (2017). Decolonizing Transgender Medicine: Meeting the Needs of People of Color. Presented at U.S. Professional Association for Transgender Health Conference, Los Angeles, CA.

About: Credentials
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