Leo Baker (formerly Lee Baker) is a professional skateboarder. They began skateboarding around age two or three, while in foster care. In 2017, Rolling Stone magazine said that Baker was "one of the best skaters on the planet". As of 2020, Baker has won seven medals in X Games.
After being signed to the Nike Skateboarding brand in 2017, Baker created the NYC Skate Project, a community aiming to uplift LGBTQ+ skaters and women skaters.
Leo was one of the skaters that was added to the remastered version of the Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1+2 video games, which they played as a child.
[H]eteronormativity and patriarchy all trickle down into different cultures. For a long time, you had to look a certain way or you didn't get to be successful as a non-male skater. I just got to a point where I was like, well fuck it then I'll just get a job. I'm gonna keep skating my whole life but if you don't like me, fuck too bad, because I'm not going to conform to whatever shit. That is the essence of what going against the grain feels like because I feel like I'm swimming upstream and I have to dress like fucking feminine or I don't get support. Well, oh surprise, I'm fucking trans so none of that is happening!
NYCSP was born out of a need for community. My dream was to create a space where women and queer skaters could come together to be fully self-expressed. The beauty of this event is that it can be anyone’s dream to come to life. Anyone can be a leader, it's not rigid.
Skateboard clinics for all ages and abilities is a staple at NYCSP, and it will always be an intentional space for gender non-conforming, trans folx, non-binary folx, and cis women who skate. But beyond that, we have done art shows, poetry, and zine workshops, and we've had live music and free skate. It's such a beautiful way to celebrate the community when I can take on any ideas, and let the event grow into something beyond my own imagination.
I almost feel like there is no gender; I don't identify with any of that. All of it feels so foreign. I'm not a woman, and if you take the "standard" definition of what a man is, I'm definitely not that. I'm floating around in space somewhere between the two. Nonbinary feels comfortable, and it feels correct. He/him and they/them pronouns feel good. We need to create visibility and space for people to be who they are, and to not have to fit into these molds.