Shane Ortega Headshot
Report a problem with this profile
[email protected]

Shane Ortega      

The US Army's First Openly Trans Soldier

Shane Ortega is an American soldier U.S. Army Sergeant serving at Wheeler Airfield in Oahu, Hawaii as a helicopter crew chief in the Army's 25th Infantry Division, and is the first openly trans soldier in the U.S. Military.

Born in Patuxent River, Maryland to military parents and assigned female at birth, Ortega never considered any other career. His father served in the U.S. Navy while his mom served in the Navy and Army. Two of his uncles served in Vietnam. He also knew he wasn't female when he was very young, "I’ve known since I was a child." While still in Monacan High School outside Richmond, he signed up for Marine boot camp and left for camp two days after graduating in 2005.

Ortega has served three combat tours, two in Iraq, one in Afghanistan, "Two as a Marine and one in the Army. Two as a woman and one as a man." Ortega states, "My commitment to serving this country runs deep, I have been a team and squad leader, a crew chief, and a machine gun section chief."

Ortega has been on over 400 combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, "and fought side-by-side in foxholes and remote operating bases." Ortega stated, "I will continue to fight this fight for the 700,000 transgender veterans that have gone before me who were forced to choose between serving their country and being true to who they are." He always presents as male except when compelled by the Army to wear women's "dress blues" for official occasions, he lives as a man and holds ID and passport under his male gender. Ortega notes that in a combat zone it made little difference of his gender identity as he was expected to carry his own equipment and do his job.


Meet Shane, The Army's First Openly Trans Soldier
Transgender Army Sergeant Shane Ortega Opens Up About His ...

Transgender Army Sergeant Shane Ortega Opens Up About His Journey. FUSION. By Jorge Ramos and Jorge Rivas. Posted: 07/30/2015 09:58 AM EDT ...

Transgender veteran sees 'panic and unrest' for trans troops - NY ...

Nearly 100 calls from worried service members flooded Shane Ortega's phone after Trump tweeted that their military career is over.

Related Speakers View all

More like Shane