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TransCanWork and El Pollo Loco franchisee to host The Second Annual TransCanWork Christmas Holiday Celebration

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Michaela Mendelsohn, founder of the California Transgender Work Project (CTWP) and a longtime El Pollo Loco franchise operator and CEO of Pollo West Corp., with six restaurants in Southern California, is hosting the Second Annual Transcanwork Christmas Holiday Celebration in association with St John’s Hospital.

The special event is open to the transgender and gender nonconforming (GNC) communities.

Individuals wishing to attend will need to take their mobile device to the register  at any of the six participating El Pollo Loco locations, check-in & show they “Like” the FB page of the location they are in. The offier is good for one meal under $10 and cannot be combined with any other offer or coupon.

When: December 24, 2016 10:00am t’il 8:00pm.


All six of Michaela’s El Pollo Loco locations.

  1. 17240 Saticoy, Van Nuys, CA
  2. 7851 Foothill Blvd, Sunhill CA
  3. 5050 Kanan Rd, Aguorra Hills, CA
  4. 1545 S Western, Los Angeles, CA
  5. 3750 W 5th St, Oxnard, CA
  6. 1722 S Victoria, Ventura, CA


On December 8, 2016 the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) released their groundbreaking nationwide survey.

Among the issues facing our transgender population is a rate of unemployment over three times the rate of the general population.

The CTWP program is designed to be a solution, putting transgender and gender non conforming individuals back to work and in their “true gender identity.”

In addition, according to the report 40% of transgender (TG) and GNC respondents have attempted suicide.

The Holiday season is a particularly difficult time for TG and GNC individuals who do not have a supportive family to spend the holidays with.

“In the work I do as a Board Member and crisis line volunteer at the Trevor Project, I realize what a difficult time this is for so many of us who are transgender. If I can do something small, like giving them an ‘affirming’ place to have a delicious hot meal, it only warms my heart in the process,“ says Michaela Mendelsohn.

A special donation page has been set up via the website raising funds for the Xmas Celebration and, beyond the Holidays, to help with the administrative costs to keep the project going.

Donations can be made at:


Mendelsohn, the first transgender member of the L.A. Workforce Development Board,  is the founder of the California Transgender Work Project (CTWP) – a program formed with the mission of promoting a trans positive work climate throughout the state of California – in association with the TransLatina Coalition, LALGBT Center, ST. John’s Hospital, APAIT, and the California Restaurant Association (CRA).

The primary effort this year in partnership with the CRA is focused towards the California restaurant industry consisting of 96,00 restaurants  1,7 million employees and 30 million customers.

Mendelsohn is in a unique position to teach on the subject and help others break barriers – her restaurant teams now include transgender employees including hispanic transgender women.

She is also on the board of the Trevor Project, a national organization devoted to eliminating suicide among LGBT youth.

And she served as a consultant to the series “Orange is the New Black.”

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