Bio & Links

Lucky S. Michaels, TRANS Activist, International Speaker, Mixologist, Photographer, ICON,
National Advisory Council on LGBTQ Homeless Youth


© Christian Ledan Photography

Lucky Michaels is a Trans Activist and International Speaker. She is the first transgender woman ever to be featured at the James Beard Foundation and is a Mixologist at Storico of Constellation Culinary Group. Lucky likes to mix some history into the cocktail shaker as she draws you in with a passion for hospitality. She is on the James Beard Foundation Women's Leadership Advisory Committee and an Advisory Board Member of Women in Hospitality United .

The Landmark New-York Historical Society has a vintage print by Lucky Michaels in their permanent collection and has a copy of her photo essay "Shelter" in their library.

Get Your Copy of ICONS ACTIVISTS & LEGENDS! She is listed alongside her heroes & sheroes.

Currently she has over 20 years working with trans-related agencies including public speaking engagements and runaway and homeless youth and vulnerable populations. Her passport is current and continues to use it to work with LGBT organizations globally. 

Internationally she has worked with a variety of trans projects including a 10 day trip in 2011 to Labrys in Kyrgystan where she worked to help form an LGBT shelter, a transgender working group, and a shelter for gay men. She met the Labrys workers at International AIDS Conference 2010 in Vienna Austria while working as a trans activist on behalf of Health Global Access Project  on a press pass. Similarly she worked with projects in Germany at the Hochschule fur Angewandte Wissenschaften Hamburg and South America with sex-work projects in Guadalajara both in digital, telephone and in-person meetings.  

On a national and regional level her experience stems from involvement which came out of a project from the dying wish of Sylvia Rivera. In 2002 Lucky was hired by MCCNY as an Overnight Counselor and over time she was promoted becoming the Director. From its inception she helped to develop, build and shape the program that is known today as Sylvia’s Place operated by MCCNY Homeless Youth Services of the MCCNY Charities. There she hired, trained, and supervised a staff of 10 people including a Psychiatrist, Psych Nurse Practitioner, Social Worker, Client Service Assistants and Interns from Hunter College and abroad. It was a complete mental health services program and drop-in space.

She has been published in a number of works including a photo essay entitled “Shelter” which was in the NY Times, The Lawyer's Manual on Human Trafficking; Pursuing Justice for Victims, The CDC Testing Guidelines and the Rapid and Conventional Testing Practices of Homeless Youth, Kicked Out, and overseen a number of projects including MTV True Life; I'm Homeless and Becoming Visible. She holds a seat on The National Advisory Council on LGBTQ Youth, and has held seats on the Policy Committee of The NYC Planning Council, and the Steering Committee of the Empire State Coalition of Runaway and Street-Involved Youth. Her work has been celebrated by The Advocate Magazine's inaugural selection of the Top 40 Advocates Under Forty Years of Age in 2009 and UFMCC's Sylvia Rivera Activist Award.


Tangier, Maroc