Photography by Ryan Pfluger in marina del rey, calif., on October 1, 2015. Styling by Michael Cook. Hair and Makeup: Harper at Exclusive Artists Management. Dress by Topshop.
“Three of the biggest things I’ve ever done all happened in one year — in one month!” says Jen Richards. In August, she released the trailer for Her Story, the Web series she co-wrote and co-produced, and in which she also stars, about the dating lives of trans women. That same month, I Am Cait, which featured Richards in several episodes, came out, and was viewed by a couple million people worldwide. “It’s the biggest platform trans stories have ever had,” Richards says. “Meanwhile, a long essay I wrote for The Advocate [‘What Trans Movement?’] became a cover story and generated a lot of conversation in my community.” Richards, the co-founder and former director of the Trans 100, is also the creator of We Happy Trans, a website dedicated to celebrating positive transgender experiences. It’s been “dizzying” but gratifying moving from behind the scenes into the public eye, but she says one kind of work is a natural extension of the other. “You can have a really incredible reach by creating something compelling that people want to watch.”