I’m coming to Seattle!

I hope all is well with you! Im in Seattle this week for two events sponsored by Central District Forum! http://www.cdforum.org/

I’m excited about this panel and workshop. If anyone is in the area, or your know folks to pass it on to – I hope to see you! Come through and make sure you say hello to me!

Event 1: On Thursday Oct 11th @ 7pm

Which Way Seattle? Series
Transracial Adoption of Black Children
at Ethnic Cultural Theater at University of Washington
Purchase your tickets here:

Event 2: Saturday Oct 13, @ 1-3pm

CD Forum Presents:
Race and Transracial Adoption Workshop
with Lisa Marie Rollins
1pm-3pm at Seattle University
Pigott Building, Room 106
Broadway and E. Madison Street, Seattle, WA (Directions
maps/driving_to_main_campus/> )

RSVP at deneem@cdforum.org or call 206-323-4032.

Open to the public: For youth (13 and up), adult adoptees and any member of the triad. This workshop attends to the myriad of issues that emerge when we place adult adoptees at the center of a discussion about transracial adoption.
What happens when we stop arguing that “love is enough” and that “race doesn’t matter” and move to the more complicated issues of how white privilege factors into the rising numbers of adoptions both domestically and internationally. Additionally, this workshop focuses on racial identity and adoption and how thinking about oneself as Black, Asian or Latin American has its own particular struggles when adoption is our starting point.


My TRA cousin

About 12 years ago, my cousin adopted a baby from Guatamala. I’ve always wondered about her – what she thinks about herself as an transracially adopted girl, if she thinks about her BF and if her parents, my cousins discuss her reality (racially or otherwise) with her. My cousin seems open, and I’ve given her some books and recommended some stuff, but you never really know. The only thing i can do is just be here, and be open and ready if she has questions for me one day.

But today I’m just proud cousin. Check my gurl out! TRA Represent!

Lina-Maria in the Nationals!  

Watch out Olympics – she’s coming for YOU!

(P.S. – yes – I’ve just returned from PACT Camp/ TRA camp in the forest. Ive needed a few days to recover. But I’ll be posting my post-camp photos and stuff soon.  It was a good week – I got to meet John Raible, Amanda Baden and Sue Harris-O’Connor! Oh yeah – it was a powerful and emotionally tiring week. Im so thankful to be home! )

TRA radio!

I’m gonna be on the radio on monday November 6th from 1-2pm on KPFA Berkeley  – 94.1 FM on their Women’s Magazine. The show is about transracial adoption and I’ll be featured on the hour alongside interviews with other TRA’s Julia Chinyere Oparah and Sandra White Hawk.

If you arent in the area – you can click the link above and listen online! Cool! I’ll be doin an excerpt from the show, so if you havent seen it you can hear it! (UPDATE: If you missed the original airing time-  the archived version of the show is here)

The interview was good, but always when I do these things I think of a million things I could have said when I’m done. I’d love to hear your comments, questions and stuff when its all over! Fun!


 “In recognition of National Adoption Month, KPFA Radio’s Women’s Magazine will feature the voices of women of color adoptees. We will speak to two adoptee’s from the new anthology “Outsider Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption” co-editor Julia Chinyere Oparah and contributor Sandra White Hawk about this ground breaking anthology which for the first time brings together the voices transracial adoptees, examines their experiences and the colonial systems that (re)produce the adoption industry . We will also hear the voice and work of poet and performance artist Lisa Marie Rollins, a piece from her one woman solo about being transracially adopted “Ungrateful Daughter.” Finally a commentary by Elizabeth Creely on Prop 73 the anti-choice proposition on the ballot november 7th in California. Monday from 1-2pm on KPFA at 94.1 FM or on the web at http://www.kpfa.org.&#8221;

Vote for me & Help me get a Scholarship!

Ive been selected as one top 10 finalists for the The Blogging Scholarship!  (Cheese!) I totally need your support in the next 5 days – come vote for me! Winners will be annouced Nov 6th and its $5000.00!!! I SO need this!

– It will only take a few clicks! so VOTE HERE!!!

– You can only vote once from your IP address

– If you have time – please leave a comment about me and my work on the voting page so folks see your support!

– Please tell your friends to support!

– You will go to heaven (or afterlife place of choice) for your love a grad student

– Here are the other contestant blogs . Some amazing work. All of us are different and everyone is strong.

Ya’ll know I’m in grad school, tryin to finish up my work, trying to balance all of the work I do – writing, theatre production, research, speaking, workshops, all my multi-media projects, teaching and support of my students! I could SO use this funding to assist me this semester!! I’m broke and always at the end of semesters its a struggle to pay bills, eat and get simple things like toilet paper!!!

Thanks for voting for me!!!


If you care – Here’s what I wrote for my application:

I began “A Birth Project” over a year ago with specific goals. As it reads on my blog, “This blog began with a two-pronged focus: One – my personal search for my birth parents and Two – as a place to consider my experiences as a Black girl adopted by white parents, or ‘my life as a TRA’”  (transracial adoptee).

I had no idea that my writing would connect me with a powerful group of transracial adoptees, adoption activists, scholars and performers. This connection became central to how the blog evolved. I post and comment on current news stories, post my own struggles continuing to let the world see my own search and reunion process as I find ‘parts of me’ that I never knew existed.

The most profound impact the blog/blogosphere has had on me is first, I have found support from an online community of transracial adoptees from all races and cultural backgrounds. Women and men from across the globe have written me personal, painful emails, thanking me for being vocal about my experiences and have given me love for saying things they always felt, but either were afraid to speak or could not articulate. Second, I was inspired to create an international non-profit organization “Adult Adoptees of the African Diaspora”. AAAD brings together adult adoptees of African descent across the globe and provide support, research and outreach for this widespread population. We hope our voices add to the strong voices of Korean, Chinese and Vietnamese transracial and international adoptees. Many TRA’s are isolated, the only person of color for miles, forced to struggle against uneducated assumptions about skin color or culture. This organization provides comfort and strength to a TRA who may be alone in her or his town. I hope my blog continues to do the same.

They Just Dont Know

but imma tell them.

I’m on my way out the house to the airport to pick up my homeboy comin in from IL for the American Studies Conference. Im late already, but my mailbox is full. My copy of “Outsiders Within” has arrived. Im so excited I put down my bag and right on the porch, open the copy and read the dedication. Its to me. To you. To us.

I am in tears on my front porch so overwhelmed I cant stop them. This is why I write. Why I speak, why I perform. Im so tired of someone telling me who and what I am.

thank you. thank you. thank you.

(P.S.  I expect updates from all of you at the conference in NY!!! Im sending love and I wanted to come, but was already committed to ASA Conference!) 

TRA familia on Addicted to Race

Hey – check out my girls Ji-in and Jae Ran Kim in a roundtable dicussion on an Addicted to Race podcast.  They discuss, among other ‘thangs’, the “. . . unique dynamics of TRA dialogue, the pitfalls of the “colorblind” approach to adoption, as well as the prevalence of cultural appropriation.” (from TTR)

I love these wimmins. (wiping away a tear).

(Addicted to Race is a podcast about America’s obsession with race, with specific emphasis on mixed race identity and interracial relationships created by hosts Carmen Van Kerckhove and Jen Chau of New Demographic and Mixed Media Watch)

Off to TRA camp!

I never thought in my entire life that I would be saying those words. I’m off to TRA camp – in the Santa Cruz mountains. A week of spending time with little tiny and not so tiny mini-me’s! oh.. AND their parents … aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!

🙂 I’m completely open with no expectations about what this should be. I’m doing a poetry workshop and performing the show. It should be a trip to perform it for this audience and Im totally thankful to PACT for giving me the opportunity to share this piece in front of the people, in many ways, who this is for. I hope they’ll let me come back next year when the piece is totally done.

 The camp is about 50% African American kids. I wonder how many counselors are black? I’ll find out. It should be interesting becuase it seems like since the National Black Social Workers in the 70’s did their thing, denouncing Black TRA’s, people moved internationally so many, many of adults are Korean, Chinese etc… but now days its much more common to adopt black (american/ african/ or caribbean..etc) children.

anyhow- I’m looking forward to meeting fellow TRA warrior Ji-in – yay!

 see you all next week with lots of stories… ha!

CFP and TRA email list

I have created a list for Black/African Adult TRA's on yahoogroups. Please pass this list on to folks you know. The group is an effort to provide resources, community, discussion and news space for Adult Transracial Adoptees (TRA's) across the globe who are African or African descent/Black, mixed- race etc. There are many lists that provide support for Parents of TRA's, but none for adoptees who many times never find support to express their particular strange position in a world obsessed with race. Although our numbers are not as great as say, our Korean brother and sister TRA's, I am convinced we simply need a space that is our own to become more visible. Join us!


CFP: TRA Represent!

TRA's I'm looking for you! TRA Represent will be a creative and collaborative work representing the voices of Black, African, African American and mixed-race transracial adoptees. If you are or if you know someone who is a TRA, and willing to try to write about their experiences perhaps this is your moment! Poetry, short stories, anecdotes and critical essays – are all acceptable. Themes can include struggles with the development of racial identity, guilt of critiquing a family who raised you, complexity of hyper-racialized living, dreams, stories, plays, reunion stories all welcome. This volume will fill a critical gap in TRA research and literature that has not specifically opened space for the adoptees themselves and hopes to be a contribution to the literature of the African Diaspora in that it focuses on the diversity of experiences that make the diaspora so complex and powerful.

Email submissions to lrollins@berkeley.edu. Deadline September 15, 2006.