We had the good fortune of connecting with Sorin Thomas and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sorin, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
We wanted to create something new – a nonprofit community mental health organization centering queer & trans experience, from a contemplative and social justice counseling lens. It was important to us not only to provide much-needed services, but also to be guided by the wisdom of our own queer & other marginalized experiences, and to truly celebrate queer brilliance by creating platforms for folks in our community to work, grow together, and thrive.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Queer Asterisk is a queer and trans-led Colorado 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, dedicated to fostering a world in which folks with diverse & intersecting identities can thrive. As the Executive Director, what I am most proud of is how many queer and trans professionals we are able to employ. From humble beginnings in 2016 as a small team working in a basement office in downtown Boulder, we are now a team of more than 50 queer and trans mental health professionals who feel like family, serving the community in multiple locations across the Front Range. Every single day, I learn from our clients and team members. I think this is the key to a successful business – truly listening to the people you’re serving, collaborating with others, and adapting your ideas to meet the moment.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love this question! We would have a jam-packed itinerary for the week, checking out all of my favorite spots. First, we would head up to Salto in Ned for breakfast sandwiches and chai, then over to Eldora for some skiing & snowboarding or snowshoeing through the woods. On the way back down the mountain, we’d head over to Lyons for lunch at The Stone Cup, or if it’s later in the day, Julie’s Thai for dinner (especially for the mango sticky rice). I love horses, and I own two young wild mustangs, so we’d probably spend the next day at the barn, then take my horses out on a trail-ride at a nearby spot like the Boulder Reservoir, and finish with dinner at Sherpa’s in Boulder – one of my favorite restaurants. They have the best patio, and the best chicken momos! Next, we’d pack up and head out of town to spend a few days near Buena Vista. We would check out Cottonwood Hotsprings, meet up with my friends Roo & Pedro who run Wild Mountain Retreats, and go out river rafting on Browns Canyon. While we’re in Buena Vista, we would definitely go see a movie at the drive-in theatre, then camp for the night near the beautiful Arkansas river. Next, we’d head down to Salida for the best turmeric latte & funky shopping at Howl Mercantile, and the best handcrafted soaps, tinctures and teas at Vital Living. Finally, we’d head down south to check out the Colorado Gators Reptile Park (it’s amazing), go for a hike at the Sand Dunes, and have a soak at the Sand Dunes hot springs. Maybe we would even get to spend the night in a geodesic dome or earth house in Crestone! Last but not least, once we arrive back in Denver, we would grab bagels at Rosenberg’s, stroll through the Botanic Gardens, go play some ping-pong at Ace Eat Serve, and check out a concert or Open Mic at the legendary Mercury Cafe. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shoutout to all the queer elders & ancestors who, with fierceness and love, sacrificed so much in the movement for liberation – making Queer Asterisk’s work in the world possible today.
Youtube: Queer Asterisk
Other: – Queer Asterisk podcast “The Queer Room” launching in February 2021 on all podcast platforms. – Queer Asterisk profile on Psychology Today