Captain Alivia Stehlik knows what the Army is: It’s her world, and her commitment to living in it has never been stronger. In May 2017, Alivia came out as transgender, meaning she was born male but now lives every day as the woman she’s long known herself to be. Soon after coming out, she was shocked to hear President Trump express his intent to ban transgender people from serving. Despite the announcement, she was supported internally by her commanding officer and her brigade. Since then, Alivia has taught classes to hundreds of enlistees about what it means to be transgender in the Army.
“My experiences in the Army have taught me that you can always go another minute, another step, another hour, another day, no matter how hard things get. They also taught me that we don’t get anywhere on our own. You can keep walking, but it’s the men and women standing next to you that get you through the hardest days. In the Army, we take care of each other.”