Allison Woolbert

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Allison D. Woolbert (formerly Dennis Wayne Woolbert) was a trans activist from New Jersey who was infamous among trans-critical feminists for the blog "TERF Tracker," which he started to complain about and, arguably, harass feminists. After it was revealed by his fellow trans activists that he had a past conviction for sexually molesting a 15 year-old relative, he seems to have disappeared from the Internet.

Professional life

According to his public Linkedin profile, Woolbert has been working in IT since the early 1980s.[1]

His many early job descriptions include:

  • 1982: IBM: Mail Room
  • 1983 - 1987: U.S. Air Force: Maintenance Statistical Analyst, Computer Programmer
  • 1983 - 1986: Radio Shack: Assistant Manager
  • 1987 - 1988: Interwest Bank of Arizona: Mainframe Computer Manager, Mainframe Installer
  • 1988 - 1992: Simply Computers: PC Sales, Assembly, Tech Support
  • 1989: Wheaton Glass: Maintenance Software Programmer
  • 1989: Mannington Mills: Engineering Assistant/Programmer
  • 1990: PSE&G: Maintenance Software Programmer
  • 1990 - 1992: Xerox: Technician/Operator

After that, there is a gap in Woolbert's résumé for a few years, which is the time he was in prison. See below for details.

In August 1995, Woolbert founded his own software development business, Phoenix Consultants Group, Inc., which seems to still exist.[2]

His Linkedin profile also lists an entry for 2003 titled "Private Business Owner" and with the description: "Custom cabinet maker, furniture maker and beautiful handmade gifts from exotic woods of the world."

A later 2016 entry on the same page lists him as the president of his multi-generation carpentry family business. The decision to move away from IT and into the family business in 2016 might or might not be related to the 2015 revelation of his past as a sex offender...

Trans activism

There seems to be no public information as to when exactly Woolbert decided to start living as a transwoman, and when he began being involved in trans activism, but the latter seems to be the early 2010s.

The website NonProfitFacts.com, lists a tax report by the Transgender Human Rights Institute (THRI) for 2012 period, apparently filed by Woolbert.[3] The income is listed as zero dollars so it seems the organization did not start to be active until later.

In October 2013, Woolbert started a Kickstarter campaign to create the Transgender Violence Tracking Portal (TVTP).[4] The fundraiser started with a goal of $3,500 and gained $4,772 in total. In a November 2013 interview published on Huffpost, Woolbert explains why he believes there to be a need for tracking anti-transgender violence, and how his software development business started providing the technologies needed to start the TVTP.[5] A follow-up article from October 2014 talks about how the TVTP had been successfully set up at that point.[6]

In December 2014, the THRI started a petition against "transgender conversion therapy" after the suicide of a 17 year-old teenager.[7] The petition garnered about 350,000 signatures and some mainstream media attention.[8]

TERF Tracker

In August 2014, Woolbert started a blog called "TERF Tracker" described as being "about the cause to eliminate transphobic harassment and violence by the pseudo-feminist group called the TERFs (Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists)."[9]

Later in the same month, Woolbert posted on TERF Tracker that he would be focusing on TVTP instead, and designated Melissa Savage as the director/facilitator of the blog.[10]

Among the targets of TERF Tracker was lesbian lawyer Cathy Brennan and her blog Gender Identity Watch (since suspended by WordPress), the Women's Liberation Front (WoLF), and the blog GenderTrender by GallusMag (also suspended by now).

Revelation of past sexual offense

On January 6, 2015, the Twitter account of the TERF Tracker (@TERFTracker), controlled by Melissa Savage at that point, tweeted at the account @TransHarmTrack:

Hey Allison, does the year 1991 have any significance to you? - Melissa Savage

It had come out that in 1991, Woolbert had been convicted of Aggravated Sexual Assault in the First Degree, his victim apparently being a 15 year-old family member. Woolbert was 28 years old at the time and would serve the next 4 years in prison. The revelation was posted about swiftly in various blogs and publications, both by trans-critical feminists and trans activists.

Two days later, GenderTrender published a brief post about the revelation of the crime via Savage's tweet and the associated public criminal record.[11]

After another day, the TransAdvocate published a post titled "Community Responsibility" in which they lamented that "an anti-violence organization that [he] led" (presumably, either the TVTP or the THRI) had declined to accept Woolbert's resignation following the revelations.[12] On the same day, TERF Tracker published a highly detailed post about Woolbert's crime and related issues, meant as a continuation of the statement by the TransAdvocate.[13] Although the post was titled "Part One," there would be no part two. To date, it is the last post on TERF Tracker.

On January 11, the TransAdvocate reported on Woolbert having resigned from both the THRI and the TVTP.[14]

A few days later, the website LGBT Weekly published an independent article about the event, speaking of the importance of vetting leadership for trans activist groups.[15]

References

  1. Allison Woolbert, Linkedin.
  2. Allison Woolbert, Crunchbase.
  3. Transgender Human Rights Institute Inc. in Princeton, New Jersey (NJ). NonProfitFacts.com.
  4. Allison Woolbert (October 7, 2013). Transgender Violence Tracking Portal. kickstarter.com.
  5. A.J. Walkley (November 11, 2013). Allison Woolbert on the Need for Tracking of Anti-Transgender Violence. HuffPost.
  6. A.J. Walkley (October 10, 2014). Transgender Violence Tracking Portal: One Year Later. HuffPost.
  7. Enact Leelah's Law to Ban Transgender Conversion Therapy. Change.org. December 31, 2014.
  8. Transgender teen’s death inspires petition against conversion therapy. Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). January 2, 2015.
  9. Allison Woolbert (August 4, 2014). A commentary on “A Feminist Guide to all things Trans” - Part 1. terftracker.blogspot.com.
  10. Allison Woolbert (August 29, 2014). Allison Woolbert To Focus on TVTP, Designates Melissa Savage the TERF Tracker Director/Facilitator by Allison Woolbert. terftracker.blogspot.com.
  11. “Terf Tracker” Allison Woolbert : outed as violent sex offender, resigns, citing his “unconscionable behavior as a human being”. GenderTrender. January 8, 2015.
  12. Community Responsibility. TransAdvocate. January 9, 2015.
  13. Allison Woolbert Exposed Part One. TERF Tracker. January 9, 2015.
  14. THRI/TVTP Executive Director Resigns After Aggravated Sexual Assault Record Discovered. TransAdvocate. January 11, 2015.
  15. Autumn Sandeen (January 15, 2015). Allison Woolbert’s resignation: An object lesson on the value of thorough vetting. LGBT Weekly.