Monica Roberts was a blogger, writer and transgender activist, and the founding editor of TransGriot, a blog devoted to covering the experiences of trans women, particularly trans women of color. The Houston native was an award-winning advocate and voice on trans rights issues for over 20 years. In addition to being honored with the 2018 GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Blog, she became the first trans person to receive the Robert Coles Call of Service Award in 2016. She also received the Barbara Jordan Breaking Barriers Award from the Harris County Democratic Party and the Susan Hyde Award for Longevity in the Movement from the National LGBTQ Task Force.
Roberts began TransGriot in 2004 as a column in The Letter, a Louisville-based LGBTQ newspaper. TransGriot took its name in part from “griot,” a word which refers to a storyteller from West Africa. Motivated by a lack of blogs devoted to the experiences of trans women of color, particularly Black trans women, Roberts stated that her mission was to, “chronicle the history of Black transpeople.” She frequently covered violence against the transgender community and was often able to correctly identify transgender victims of violence who had been misgendered or incorrectly identified by the police and mainstream media. Shortly before her death in October 2020, Roberts was appointed to the NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists National Board of Directors.