Monica Helms

Monica Helms joined the Navy after high school, serving in the engine room of two submarines until 1978. In 1997, she started living as a woman and became involved in transgender activism. She created the first transgender pride flag in 1999 as a symbol of transgender diversity and rights and debuted it at a pride parade in Phoenix in 2000. 

The original Transgender Pride Flag created by Monica Helms is in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution, at the National Museum of American History.