Geena Rocero feels beautiful and she wants transgender youth
to feel the same way.
When she was asked to produce Beautiful as I Want to Be
, a new web series spotlighting
transgender youth for Logo, Rocero saw it as an opportunity to pay it forward.
At 15, when she first started presenting as a female, Rocero
was adopted by the beauty pageant scene in the Philippines where gender
fluidity is celebrated. “I was given the opportunity to express myself,” Rocero
tells ETonline, “and through the beauty pageants I was able to learn more about myself. I
wanted others to have that.”
WATCH: Caitlyn Jenner Makes Red Carpet Debut at Premiere of 'Beautiful as I Want to Be'
Now, a decade after moving to the U.S. and modeling in the
fashion industry, Rocero has turned her attention to empowering the transgender
community. Last year, she gave a TED talk
and founded Gender Proud, an advocacy
group dedicated to the advancement of transgender rights.
She’s even become something of a mentor and friend to
Caitlyn Jenner, even helping the former Olympian celebrate her “first birthday
at the premiere of As Beautiful as I Want
Rocera opened up to ETonline about the new series, what it’s
been like to work with Jenner during her public transition, and knocking down
barriers in the fashion industry.