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Caitlyn Jenner and transgender people

Caitlyn Jenner is an American media personality and Olympic gold medalist. Upon coming out as transgender in 2015, Jenner became the most famous transgender person alive. Jenner’s conservative views frequently cause tension with more progressive trans community members.


Caitlyn Marie Jenner was born on October 28, 1949 in Mount Kisco, New York. Jenner attended high school in Sleepy Hollow, New York and Newtown, Connecticut. Jenner earned a bachelor’s degree from Graceland College in 1973. While there, Jenner played football until an injury forced a switch to decathlon. Jenner placed 10th in decathlon at the 1972 Summer Olympics. After that, Jenner dominated the event through the 1976 Summer Olympics. That gold medal and world record made Jenner a national hero.

Jenner secured many endorsement deals and began appearing in film and television regularly for the next 30 years. In 2007 Jenner’s family starred in the hit reality series Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

Jenner has been married three times and has six children and four stepchildren. Jenner was married to Kris Kardashian from 1991 to 2015. In 2015, as transition rumors swirled, Jenner was involved in a fatal car crash. Jenner and trans entrepreneur Sophia Hutchins met in 2015 and have a close friendship.

As a transgender public figure

Jenner’s coming out as trans caused a media frenzy, including appearances on magazine covers and many interviews in print and television. Jenner starred in the reality series I Am Cait, made a cameo on Transparent, and continued appearing in film and television. Jenner was named one of 25 Glamour Women of the Year and received other recognitions, including the 2016 Time 100. In 2017 Jenner published a memoir, The Secrets of My Life, and had facial feminization surgery and bottom surgery.

Jenner made a number of controversial comments after coming out, such as joking that the hardest part about being a woman “is figuring out what to wear.” The glib sexist comments combined with the media attention led to a backlash among many conservatives and anti-transgender activists.

Jenner has continued to take conservative positions and make controversial comments about LGBT issues that have led to backlash from the community. Ellen Degeneres pressed Jenner about opposing gay marriage. Jenner’s comments about transgender athletes became a major talking point in 2021 during an unsuccessful run for California governor. In 2022 Jenner joined Fox News as an on-air contributor. In 2023 Jenner founded the Fairness First PAC “to keep boys out of women’s sports.”


Bissinger, Buzz (July 2015). Introducing Caitlyn JennerVanity Fair. [archive]

Alice Vincent (September 17, 2015). South Park takes on political correctness in Caitlyn Jenner episodeThe Telegraph. [archive]

Thomas Page McBee (October 29, 1015). Caitlyn Jenner, Olympic Hero and Trans Champion: “Maybe This Is Why God Put Me on Earth”. Glamour. [archive]

Melissa Maerz (November 24, 2015). EW’s 2015 Entertainers of the Year: Caitlyn JennerEntertainment Weekly. [archive]

Meredith B. Kile (December 18, 2015). Caitlyn Jenner Named Barbara Walters’ Most Fascinating Person of 2015. ETOnline. [archive]

Wayne Maines (April 21, 2016). Caitlyn Jenner by Wayne Maines: Time 100Time. [archive]

French, Megan (June 28, 2016). Caitlyn Jenner poses for Sports IllustratedUs Weekly. Sports. [archive]

Ennis, Dawn (November 18, 2015). Rose McGowan to Caitlyn Jenner: ‘We Are More than Deciding What to Wear’The Advocate. [archive]

Adrienne Tam (November 19, 2015). Did Caitlyn Jenner deserve her Glamour award? AbsolutelyThe Daily Telegraph

Jay Jay Nesheim (June 1, 2015). Caitlyn Jenner to be Honored with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at The 2015 ESPYS on ABC July 15ESPN Media Zone. [archive]

Eun Kyung Kim (June 3, 2015). Caitlyn Jenner in new E! documentary declares: ‘I’m the new normal’Today [archive]

Matthew Breen (November 22, 2015). Out100: Caitlyn JennerOut. [archive]

Person of the Year: The FinalistsThe Advocate. November 5, 2015. [archive]

Bieler, Des (February 24, 2017). Caitlyn Jenner tells Trump his policy on transgender students ‘is a disaster’Washington Post. [archive]

Pallotta, Frank (July 26, 2017). Caitlyn Jenner, Laverne Cox condemn Trump’s transgender military ban. CNN. [archive]

Jenner, Caitlyn (October 25, 2018). I thought Trump would help trans people. I was wrongWashington Post. [archive]

Neumann, Sean; Sheeler, Jason (April 26, 2021). How Caitlyn Jenner Has Described Her Politics as She Launches Campaign for GovernorPeople. [archive]

Henderson, Cydney (March 24, 2022). Caitlyn Jenner says trans swimmer Lia Thomas is not the ‘rightful winner’ of NCAA titleUSA Today. [archive]


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