Meredith Taylor Brown
Meredith Taylor Brown (she/her) is a Staff Attorney in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV (“LGBTQ”) Project at the National Headquarters of the American Civil Liberties Union (“ACLU”) in New York City. Taylor litigates civil rights lawsuits across the country, to defend and expand the civil rights and liberties of LGBTQ+ people and all people living with HIV. She is also actively engaged in federal and state policy advocacy and stakeholder engagement.
Taylor is a proud first-generation college student and first-generation law student. She is an openly Black transgender woman who has survived violence related to her transgender status, poverty, housing instability, her father’s incarceration and healthcare discrimination, to become a leader in the newest wave of the fight for the full recognition of civil rights and liberties for LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV.
Taylor is originally from Morganton, NC. She attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as a Carolina Covenant Scholar. Taylor then attended the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law as an E. Nathaniel Gates Scholar. During law school, Taylor completed fellowships at the National LGBTQ Task Force (“Task Force”) and the Georgia Resource Center (“GRC”). At the Task Force, Taylor assisted with federal healthcare policy advocacy for transgender people and co-wrote the first of its kind, the National Transgender Mental Health Survey, and the “Queering Reproductive Justice: A Toolkit.” At the Georgia Resource Center, Taylor assisted with federal appellate habeas litigation for indigent Georgians, sentenced to death.
Before joining the ACLU, Taylor worked at Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund (“Lambda”). Taylor began her career as a legal intern in the Transgender Rights Project at Lambda while in law school. She later joined Lambda as the 2017-2019 Tyron Garner Memorial Law Fellow (“Garner Fellow”) in Lambda’s Atlanta office. As the Garner Fellow, Taylor conducted litigation, policy advocacy, and education campaigns, targeting the legal issues impacting the intersection of LGBTQ+, HIV+, and Black status. One year into her fellowship, Taylor was asked to join Lambda as a Staff Attorney, the first time in the history of the fellowship and marking Taylor as the first Black trans attorney hired at both Lambda and the ACLU. At Lambda, Taylor litigated numerous civil rights cases across the country. Taylor served as lead counsel in Kadel v. Folwell, a federal lawsuit challenging the categorical exclusion of transition-related healthcare in the North Carolina state employee health plan, counsel in Fletcher v. State of Alaska, a federal lawsuit challenging the exclusion of transition-related surgical care in the State of Alaska’s employee health plan, Briteramos v. King’s of Cuts, a lawsuit brought under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, successfully challenging a barbershop’s denial of service based on HIV status, as well as Adams v. The School Board of St. Johns County, Florida, which recently secured equal protection and Title IX protections for thousands of transgender and LGB students in the Eleventh Circuit. Taylor also advocated for countless individuals outside of the courtroom during her tenure at Lambda Legal, on issues of education equity, healthcare equity, poverty, and against the carceral state.
At the ACLU, Taylor carries on her work on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community and those living with HIV. Taylor is lead counsel in Thomas v. Georgia Department of Community Health, a federal lawsuit challenging the exclusion of gender affirming surgical care in the Georgia State Medicaid plan. Taylor is lead counsel in Hersom v. Crouch, a federal lawsuit challenging West Virginia’s refusal to issue transgender West Virgians accurate and safe birth certificates. Taylor is counsel in B.P.J. v. West Virginia State Board of Education, a federal lawsuit challenging the exclusion of transgender girls in public school sports in the state of West Virginia. Taylor is counsel in Iglesias v. Bureau of Prisons, a federal lawsuit challenging the denial of transition-related healthcare for an incarcerated transgender woman, her housing status, and the Trump Administration’s “Transgender Offender Manual,” counsel in Cargian v. Breitling USA, Inc., a Title VII sexual orientation discrimination case remanded after the ACLU’s win in the consolidated cases Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, which secured protections for transgender, gay, and bisexual people nationwide under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, amicus counsel in West v. Kind, a federal lawsuit pending oral argument in the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, defending a transgender corrections officer from discrimination in the guise of religious objection.
Taylor is a board member of the National Trans Bar Association, the first national bar association dedicated to improving the legal profession for transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming legal professionals. She is also a longtime volunteer with GLSEN, helping to make schools safer and more inclusive for LGBTQ+ students.