The Southern Comfort Conference is No More

| Dec 12, 2016

According to a letter from the Board of Directors of the conference posted on their Facebook page the final Conference was the most recent one. Here is the board’s letter:

Dear SCTC family, 

It is with a heavy heart that we must announce that 2016 was the last The Southern Comfort Transgender Conference (SCTC) as you have known it for the past 26 years. 

What most of you don’t know is that we, the Southern Comfort Board of Directors (both current and a couple of past members), have been involved in a five year lawsuit that only recently concluded. Please don’t ask. As part of the settlement, we cannot discuss it at all. 

Suffice it to say that it was a five year nightmare that completely handcuffed the BOD. Some have wondered why there were no new people brought onto the board. Now you know. Anyone that would have joined the BOD would have become unnecessarily involved in the litigation. 

Fortunately, we did have liability insurance and that covered the legal fees of the case. However, as a result of being in a five year lawsuit, we were dropped by our insurance company (though they were obligated to continue until the lawsuit was resolved, which they did). Subsequently, SCTC had to find a new insurance policy. Only two companies would even offer a policy to us. Our premium went from $1300.00/year with no deductible to $11,000.00/year with a $25,000.00 deductible. 

We just can’t afford this and, this lawsuit proved that we (the current BOD) simply cannot afford to run the conference without insurance. Had we not had the insurance policy, we would have been personally liable. 

There is talk amongst a couple of the BOD to try to reorganize SCTC into something very new. Please continue your Facebook and Yahoo group presence to stay informed; any future updates on any plans will be posted to keep you informed. Otherwise, any money that is left in our account, which is being held in escrow by our attorney, will be donated to a worthy trans organization. 

We’re sorry to bring you this sad news right before the holidays, but you deserve to know what’s going on. 

It has been our extreme honor to serve you all throughout the years and we wish you all the best! 

With love, 

Your SCC/SCTC Board of Directors: 

Shanti Keshavi devi dasi (Stefanie Schumacher) 

Alexis Dee 

Christy Anderson 

Phyllis McCall

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  1. KoolMcKool says:

    I hadn’t been paying attention, but it turns out cosmetic surgeon Ousterhout filed lawsuits against surgeon Zukowski for defamation and it grew into battles over medical records and what took place at conference lectures(presentations). SCC apparently got named as a defendant by hosting Zukowski. I had met Zukowski around 2003-2006 and he did speak publicly at SCC and online, in a negative way of Ousterhout.

    To be honest, Zukowski never struck me as a man of high professional integrity. I am not surprised that they sued each other, but it does speak to how easily transgenders can lose control of their situations when others step in with offers of assistance. I believe both Ousterhout and Zukowski both dropped big money into SCC coffers.
    No matter who or what you are running, “Beware of Greeks bearing gifts”. Not the best analogy, but really are you kidding me the SCC board let two cosmetic surgeons kill the premier conference? As soon as the complaints were voiced they should of told Ousterhout and/or Zukowski, go away we don’t need this.

  2. Linda Jensen says:

    There is a case for being incorporated to protect the personal assets of directors but not having insurance. If the complainant’s lawyer feels it going to be like extracting blood from a stone he will tell his client to forget it or take her case elsewhere.
    It is sometimes referred to as the ‘deep pockets principle’ He who has the money/ insurance will be the one that is sued.

  3. Amanda F. says:

    I hope that person is proud to have brought down SCC with their lawsuit. Somehow, I have a feeling it was frivolous. They ruined a good thing fir so many with their greed. They could have reached a settlement. RIP SCC. I’m glad I went to 2011, 12 and 13.

    • KoolMcKool says:

      It is a little depressing. Just shows how some folks get obsessed with making a statement or getting back at someone(thing). Sometimes you just need to walk away from an organization. Aggrieved party could of tried mediation or compromise. It’s not as if SCC was out selling fraudulent products or defective car seats to the public.

  4. Lydia L says:

    While I have never been to SCTC, I hope that you can regroup in some way and proceed successfully.

    Brings to mind when I was very involved in a civic organization in NM about 1980-ish. We ran very successful indoor track & field / gymnastic track meets, plus a couple of second tier post season football bowl games that are still of record (Zia Bowl).

    It was frivolous, but a monetary diminishing lawsuit (that we faced & lost) brought such activities down to nil, as well. (Never recovered to my knowledge.)

    May the SCTC be able to regroup and overcome this difficulty.

    Best Regards, Lydia L

    • KoolMcKool says:

      I grew up in Albuquerque!
      I was there till 1984. I was glad to see it move forward in a lot of ways. 1970’s early 1980’s was rather desolate in Albuquerque for any type of alternative scene. There were like 2 gay bars on Central Ave and that was it.

  5. KoolMcKool says:

    Well that’s a shame. Wonder what fool had a motivation to file a lawsuit over that harmless gathering?
    All I can say is it was tremendous event when it was held in Midtown Atlanta. Great location and very fun, but all good things must comes to an end.
    I was the Activity Director of the 2006 Atlanta Conference. It was the greatest SCC in its history, no one will ever be able to duplicate the fun and success of that year.