Texas student to appear on "Montel Williams Show"

Thursday, January 12, 2006

University of North Texas senior Andrew Jones says he was surprised when he got a message from television's "The Montel Williams Show," asking him to be a guest on the program.

He agreed, and the show will air nationally on Tuesday, Jan. 24. In the Dallas-Fort Worth area, the program will air on KDFW-Fox4 at 2 p.m.

The producers of the show were looking for a guest for a program on the transgender community, and learned about Jones through a search of the internet which led them to UNT's Ally program website.

Jones has been a facilitator at the UNT Division of Equity and Diversity's Ally program, which includes training to assist gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and other persons. He is a member of UNT's transgender student group, Transcending Gender Denton.

Jones will appear in the second half of the show, which also features the family of Gwen Araujo and Gloria Allred, a Los Angeles attorney who represents the family. Gwen, a 17-year-old transgender Californian, was murdered in October 2002.

"They used my story to give the show a more personal feel and to encourage persons to respect differences amongst individuals," Jones said. The program, which was taped early last month, will also feature Jones at home in Lake Dallas.

Jones said he had never visited New York City before appearing on "The Montel Williams Show." He praises the show staff.

"Initially I was worried about it…but they treated the subject with enthusiasm, and were respectful of my wishes about what I would talk about," he said.

A senior anthropology major at UNT, Jones is the first recipient of the university's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Ally Scholarship in Honor of Mary Finley, and volunteers for the Division of Equity and Diversity. Upon graduation in May, Jones hopes to attend graduate school at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C.

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108