Welcome to LGBTQ+Math Day, 2022. The event is aimed at LGBTQ+ mathematicians, students, and post-docs in the mathematical sciences, and their allies. Building on the success of LGBTQ+Math Day, 2020 and LGBTQ+Math Day, 2021, the day will be hosted on-line by the Fields Institute on November 18, which is LGBTQ+ STEM Day. The event is free and you can register for the event.

The day will showcase state-of-the-art mathematics conducted by LGBTQ+ mathematicians, presented in an accessible way to non-specialists. Speakers will also describe their journey navigating their academic careers as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. Participants will come away inspired and learn strategies for building meaningful allyships with members of the LGBTQ+ community in mathematics.

Speakers & Panel

We will have four speakers followed by a panel. Talks are a half hour with time afterwards for questions, and begin at 1 pm EST/EDT. The panel discussion is 45 minutes and begins at 5 pm.

The schedule of talks is:

Opening remarks

Tyler Kelly, 1 - 1:30 pm

Rustum Choksi, 1:45 - 2:15 pm

Joseph Nakao, 2:30 - 3 pm

Katrin Wehrheim, 3:30 - 4 pm

Olivia Borghi, 4:15 - 4:45

Panel discussion: 5 pm

Speakers and abstracts

Olivia Borghi

Biography: Olivia Borghi (she/her) is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne in Naarm (Melbourne), Australia. Before attending Melbourne she received her masters in pure mathematics from the University of Washington in Seattle, USA. Olivia's research interests are in homotopy theory, specifically in higher operads and monoidal categories as well as how they connect to quantum algebra. She is now and always a vocal advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion in mathematics.

Title: G-monoidal categories

Abstract: Operads are a useful tool in classifying algebraic objects. Monoidal categories are algebraic objects in the categories of categories. One may require that the monoidal product of a category be commutative, up to isomorphism. This commutativity can even be governed by a sequence of groups {G_n}, in the sense that these groups act on iterated monoidal products exhibiting commutativity isomorphisms between the different permutations. In this talk I will explain the construction of certain operads in the category of groupoids that allow us to define these G-monoidal categories.

Rustum Choksi

Biography: Rustum Cholsi (he/him) was born into the small Parsi (Zoroastrian) community in Mumbai, India. He and his family emigrated to Montreal when he was two years of age. He completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto in 1989 and went on to complete his PhD at Brown University in 1994. After holding post-doctoral positions at the Center for Nonlinear Analysis, Carnegie Mellon University and the Courant Institute, New York University, he was a faculty member with the Department of Mathematics at Simon Fraser University. Since 2010, he has been a professor at the Department of Mathematics & Statistics at McGill University. He views myself as an applied mathematician, and broadly speaking, his research lies in the study and application of variational problems.

Title: A few remarks on my trajectory as a mathematician
Abstract: In this short talk, I will briefly address the development of my mathematical research interests and taste for problems in the last 25 years. I will try to complement this trajectory with my experiences as a gay man in the mathematical sciences during difficult times.

Tyler Kelly

Biography: Tyler Kelly (they/he) is an assistant professor and UKRI Future Leaders Fellow at the University of Birmingham. Before, Tyler obtained their PhD at the University of Pennsylvania in 2014 and then held an NSF Postdoc at Cambridge. Tyler's research is in algebraic geometry and mirror symmetry, studying the mirror symmetry of Landau-Ginzburg models. They also are active in the LGBTQ+ STEM community, as a member of both the LGBTQ STEM Project's Steering Committee and the London Mathematical Society's Women and Diversity in Mathematics Committee.

Title: Out of the Closet and Into the Mirror

Abstract: In mirror symmetry, we aim to find a relations between two types of geometry: symplectic and algebraic. Here, for any symplectic space, we want to find a so-called mirror algebraic space so that various data of the original space is encoded in much more computable algebraic data. There's two longstanding questions: (1) what data should be related and (2) given a symplectic space, how do we construct the mirror? For the latter question, there's various constructions in the mathematical literature established in the past few decades that yield answers with varying evidence, but which one gives you the correct mirror? I answer this question in some sense for a slew of examples. It turns out that my answer relates somehow to the way I experience aspects of my queerness, so throughout the talk I will integrate aspects of my experience and identities throughout.


Joseph Nakao

Biography: Joseph is a fifth year PhD candidate at the University of Delaware with a research focus on developing efficient and robust algorithms for solving partial differential equations, with a particular emphasis on plasma physics applications. Raised near Seattle, he stayed close to home and got his BS in applied mathematics from Seattle University. Joseph is the current Membership Committee Chair on Spectra's board of directors, as well as a co-founder of the Queer and Trans Graduate Student Union at the University of Delaware. He has written a MAA Math Values Blog article on LGBTQ+ inclusivity in mathematics departments, co-organized the AMS-sponsored posters celebrating LGBTQ+ mathematicians, been a panelist at the JMM22 Spectra workshop, and is an organizer of the upcoming SIAM AN22 minisymposium showcasing LGBTQ+ applied mathematicians.

Title: Navigating Graduate School as a Queer Student

Abstract: It is no secret that graduate school is a time of immense stress and anxiety. Balancing coursework, research, relationships, mental health, and student finances is hard enough; and being queer makes this all the more challenging. Reflecting on my personal experiences, I will describe ways that mathematics departments can support their queer graduate students. I will also describe what prospective and current graduate students can do to feel heard, included, and not alone.

Katrin Wehrheim

Biography: Katrin Wehrheim (they/them) is an anti-fascist revolutionary by calling and a global analyst by training. Applying this training to questions in low-dimensional topology and symplectic geometry - while appeasing the power structure with women-in-math outreach activities rather than addressing the real problems - led them to hold positions at ETH Zurich, Princeton University, IAS Princeton, MIT, and UC Berkeley. After gaining tenure, despite losing the battle for proofs in symplectic geometry, their main learning-and-doing has been on matters of fascism, racial capitalism, genocide accountability, reparations, and justice at large. More recently their identities are combining into "mathematics education to counter oppression."

Title: What the Fall of the Berlin Wall taught me about Hope, Truth, and Virtual Fundamental Classes

Abstract: I will share a few stories from my struggles for truth in symplectic geometry and educating to counter oppression. These are queer stories, as queer-ness is what taught me to be unapologetic about my truths and in solidarity with all struggles for justice.


Fulton Jackson

Biography: Fulton Jackson (he/him) is a PhD student at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Before going to UIUC, he completed his Master's at DePaul University, and previously started a PhD at the University of Kentucky. His research interests are in algebraic and arithmetic geometry. He is always willing to fight for others with respect to working environment, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Lily Khadjavi

Biography: Lily Khadjavi (she/her) is a Professor of Mathematics at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles whose scholarly interests lie in the intersections of mathematics and social justice and in broadening participation in the mathematical sciences. With a focus on policing and the issue of racial profiling, in 2020 she was appointed by California State Attorney General Xavier Becerra to the Racial and Identity Profiling Act Board which works with the California Department of Justice. She is co-editor of the books Mathematics for Social Justice: Resources for the College Classroom and Mathematics for Social Justice: Focusing on Quantitative Reasoning and Statistics.

Hermie Monterde

Biography: Hermie Monterde is a PhD Mathematics student in the University of Manitoba. Her research interests are spectral graph theory, combinatorial matrix theory and algebraic graph theory, and their applications to continuous-time quantum walks. She is also a migrant and labor rights activist, and a dedicated advocate for equity, diversity, and inclusion in Mathematics.

David Pike

Biography: David Pike received a BMath degree in 1992 from the University of Waterloo and a PhD in 1996 from Auburn University. In 1998 he joined the faculty at Memorial University of Newfoundland where he is currently a University Research Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics (with a cross-appointment to the Department of Computer Science). His research involves combinatorial design theory and graph theory. Recent work has been on such topics as colourings of combinatorial designs and graph decompositions, configuration orderings, as well as graph-based games. He was awarded the Hall Medal of the Institute of Combinatorics and its Applications in 2007. He has served on NSERC panels for grants and scholarships and was Vice-President (Atlantic) of the Canadian Mathematical Society (2015-2017). Currently he is on editorial boards for the Australasian Journal of Combinatorics and the Journal of Combinatorial Designs. Since 2016 he has been a Vice-President of the Institute of Combinatorics and its Applications. In June 2022 he became President of the Canadian Mathematical Society. David is a gay man whose recreational interests include curling with the Odds & Ends LGBTQ2+ Curling League in St. John's, as well as hiking and genealogical research.

Darryl Yong

Biography: Darryl Yong is a Professor of Mathematics and ACE Fellow for the 2022-23 academic year. He has served as the Associate Dean for Diversity and Director of the Mathematics Clinic Program at Harvey Mudd and was the Founding Director of the Claremont Colleges Center for Teaching and Learning. His scholarship has several foci: the retention and professional development of secondary school mathematics teachers, effective teaching practices in undergraduate STEM education, and equity, justice, and diversity in higher education.


Talks and the panel will be hosted online by the Fields Institute. A schedule is available under the header Speakers & Panel. Register here.


Chairs: Anthony Bonato (Toronto Metropolitan University), Juliette Bruce (University of California, Berkeley), Ron Buckmire (Occidental College)

Sponsor: The Fields Institute

Code of Conduct

LGBTQ+Math Day aims to create an inclusive and memorable conference experience for all attendees.

We do not tolerate harassment of attendees, staff, speakers, or panelists in any way at any time. We are dedicated to a harassment-free environment for all participants regardless of gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, ability, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or religion. All participants should behave in a constructive, positive, and professional manner at all times during the conference. Sexual, racist, and discriminatory speech will not be tolerated.

Participants should contact one of the co-chairs if they experience discrimination, harassment, or need help/support in other ways. We reserve the right to remove participants from the current and any future events if they violate these guidelines.

Thank you for helping make LGBTQ+Math Day a friendly, welcoming, and inclusive event.



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