Patrick Califia is a trans-man, a long-term activist within the kink community, a widely- published author, and a retired therapist who specialized in sex and gender minority clients.
He became involved in the leather community in the late 1970s with the Society of Janus and went on to found Samois, the first lesbian feminist S/M support group. His first published books, Sapphistry and Macho Sluts, sparked controversy that contributed to the sex wars that raged within feminism during the 1980s and 1990s.
His opposition to censorship included testifying in the legal case Little Sisters bookstore successfully brought against Canadian Customs for seizing and burning LGBT books, magazines, and visual material. He was one of the earliest authors to put information about safe and consensual kinky play into print. This included Sensuous Magic, a BDSM manual. He has done readings and workshops in the US, Canada, and Europe, and his work is widely quoted in social-science literature and research regarding BDSM.
In his clinical work, he often treated differently-gendered and kinky community members who were suffering from trauma related to childhood sexual abuse or assaults suffered as adults. So he is keenly aware of the way the concept of consent has evolved over the decades and its central role in protecting all of us from further trauma.