In just six years, Twiggy has transformed the movement to end LGBTQ+ youth homelessness.
When it comes to hats, Twiggy Pucci Garçon has worn many…
– at True Colors United, as a creator, and as a person with impeccable fashion sense. But one title has stuck with them their entire True Colors career: Resident Orb of Light. Twiggy gleams with inspiration. That’s why True Colors United is thrilled to announce the promotion of Twiggy Pucci Garçon to Chief Program Officer.
Since joining our then-tiny team in 2014, Twiggy has shaped and re-shaped True Colors United’s work to end homelessness among LGBTQ+ youth and pushed our entire movement toward goals of equity. No one could have predicted the impact Twiggy would have. No one, except perhaps for Twiggy – who always has a plan. If you’ve ever worked with them, then you know without a doubt: “It’s handled.” It’s a well known fact that Scandal’s Olivia Pope is based on the life and times of Twiggy Pucci Garçon.
Working within True Colors United for more than half a decade, Twiggy works alongside a dynamic group of individuals in the fight and protection of rights for young people with lived experiences of homelessness. Leading initiatives including the former 40 of the 40, a national list of resilient young people with lived experiences of homelessness, they understand the importance of inspiring hope and reducing the stigma experienced by LGBTQ+ and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) youth while giving them the opportunities to safely grow and learn within the communities. A few years later, they co-created True Colors United’s National Youth Forum on Homelessness – a group of young people who experienced homelessness or housing disability and leveraged their stories to inform the national conversation on homelessness, national policy and local practice. From day one, Twiggy identified the need to design a program that would address the nuances faced by service providers and provide strategy & structure to the systems, experts and organizations that directly impact LGBTQ+ and BIPOC young people. Through the creation of the Youth Action division, Twiggy and the True Colors team are committed to this movement of principle and practice.
“I recall the time where I often rode the subway from end to end at the wee hours of the morning, a time when I was arrested for sleeping on a park bench, and ask myself did I imagine being where I am now? Yes,” Twiggy said.
“I have always believed that our struggle is one part of our story, but that we have the power to create our own realities, with intention and action. I’ve dedicated these past six years at True Colors United to co-create a reality where young people with lived experience and expertise are at the center of design, implementation, and evaluation of programs and projects that impact their lives. It is my honor to take on the role of Chief Program Officer to continue to serve as a possibility model for those like me, whose systematic oppression has told that our lives and experiences hold no value. Assata Shakur says it is our duty to fight for our freedom, and it is our duty to win. I believe that together, we will end youth homelessness.”
Thanks to Twiggy’s leadership, the philosophy of Youth Action is now a standard across the movement to end youth homelessness.
To celebrate Twiggy, we asked a few of their closest colleagues to share their thoughts on what it’s like working with a Legend:
Cyndi Lauper; Co-founder and Board Member, True Colors United:
“If you want a living and breathing example of what it means to show your true colors, look to Twiggy Pucci Garçon. By virtue of being fiercely and fearlessly unique, Twiggy has transformed the work of True Colors United over the past six years. Twiggy’s commitment to their vision brings True Colors closer every day to living out our mission. It’s rare to find someone so magical yet grounded. True Colors United is honored and lucky to call Twiggy our Chief Program Officer.”
Gregory Lewis; Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director, True Colors United:
“Since the first day that Twiggy started at True Colors United six years ago, they have served as a role model of how to turn a transformative vision into a reality. Twiggy leads with empathy and with a collaborative spirit that not only brings people together to create real, meaningful change, but inspires others to do the same. Ending youth homelessness is a reality we can achieve, especially with a leader like Twiggy helping to navigate the way.”
Amanda Andere, MPA; Chief Executive Officer, Funders Together to End Homelessness:
“Twiggy is a North Star for justice and equity in the movement to end homelessness and beyond. Leadership is showing up as your true authentic self, and creating the space for others to do so as well. Twiggy is that leader, and mentors and models what it is to be inclusive and bring joy to the work for liberation. I am humbled to call them a colleague, friend, and partner. Funders Together to End Homelessness is honored to continue to work with Twiggy in this new role, and looks forward to being pushed by their brilliance.”
Ann Oliva; Visiting Senior Fellow, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities; Board Member, True Colors United:
“I have had the privilege of working with Twiggy for several years, and I am inspired every day by their creativity, courage, commitment and passion for our work. I can’t think of a better person to take on the challenge of Chief Program Officer at True Colors United. I hope I get to work with Twiggy for many, many years to come.”
Congratulations, Twiggy, on this well-deserved promotion!