Tara McKenzie Allison, P.E., Esq.
Board Member and Legal Counsel
Tara McKenzie Allison, P.E., Esq., is a male-to-female (MTF), transgendered woman, who resides in Columbus, Ohio.
She was born and raised in south-central Pennsylvania. After graduating from high school in 1981, Tara enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was trained as a nuclear reactor operator. After serving in the enlisted ranks for 2 years, she entered the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, graduated in 1987 with an engineering degree, and was commissioned as a Naval Officer. According to the Naval Academy Alumni Association, she is only the second MTF transgender – to their knowledge – that has graduated from the Naval Academy. After being honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy, Tara pursued a career as a nuclear engineer for over a decade. She is a licensed Professional Engineer. In 1999, she partially completed a MBA degree, at the College of William and Mary.
Tara made the decision to transition over eight years ago. As part of her "transition plan," she attended law school to change her career path. Tara has always been interested in the law; she felt that the legal community would provide a more accommodating career environment in which to transition.
In 2005, Tara graduated from Capital University Law School, cum laude, passed the Ohio Bar Exam, and was admitted to the Ohio Bar. In 2008, she transitioned on-the-job, while serving as General Counsel/Contracts Manager for a mid-sized, company, in Lexington, KY. In 2008, she relocated back to Columbus, with her partner Stephanie, in order to start her own law practice. She is admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.
Tara served as a Board Member and Legal Counsel for TransOhio, a not-for-profit organization serving to educate and advocate on behalf of the transgender community in Ohio. She is also active in a number of other GLBT organizations. Tara is active in politics, lobbying state lawmakers for GLBT protections. She is an active public speaker on LGBT-related issues; she has spoken at Ohio State University, OSU Law School, Capital University Law School, Ohio Northern University, Dennison University, and Transylvania University, as well as a number of other venues. Tara has been a presenter for TransOhio's Annual Transgender and Ally Symposium, for each of the last three years. She is also a regularly contributing author to OUTLOOK magazine, published in Columbus, Ohio.
Tara has three children: her daughter, Nicole, is 23 years old and has two daughters of her own; her son, Matthew, is 21 and is enlisted in the National Guard; and her son, Jacob is 8 and lives with his mother in Tennessee.