Chad Griffin, President of the Human Rights Campaign, one of the foremost LGBTQ organizations in the United States, announced he’s stepping down today (15 November).
‘I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of this incredible organization at such an important moment in the history of our movement — and our nation,’ Griffin said in a statement.
Griffin informed the Board of Director he plans to depart the organization next year, after seven years of working there.
He continued: ‘The true strength of the Human Rights Campaign is in its fearless army of staff and volunteers, who are committed to ensuring full equality reaches every LGBTQ person across America, and around the world.
‘For decades, this organization has shown the world that love conquers hate. But this year, in this election, with the future of our democracy on the ballot and the equality of future generations on the line, we proved that votes conquer hate, too.’
He added he remains ‘committed’ to HRC’s cause.
‘So now is the time to fight harder and dig deeper. Because there are still more trails to be blazed. There is still more history to be made and more battles to be won. The LGBTQ community’s brightest days and our grandest victories are still ahead of us.’
Griffin’s time of service
Griffin hails from Hope, Arkansas. His political career started by volunteering for Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign (also the first President ever endorsed by HRC). When Clinton won, Griffin began working in the press office, becoming the youngest West Wing staffer in history at 19.
In 2009, Griffin co-founded the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER). This organization helped lead the fight against California’s Proposition 8 to restore marriage equality in the state.
Under the leadership of Griffin, HRC doubled its membership from 1.5 million to over 3 million.
California Senator Kamala Harris tweeted a photo with Griffin, writing ‘history will show that Chad was a leader in the moment he was needed to lead’.
I've been friends with @ChadHGriffin for over a decade & throughout that time his commitment to civil rights & equality has never wavered. From marriage equality & beyond, history will show that Chad was a leader in the moment he was needed to lead. Can’t wait to see what's next. pic.twitter.com/TqgDSwv7rl
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) November 15, 2018
Annise Parker, the President and CEO of the Victory Fund also thanked him for his work.
.@ChadHGriffin has been an incredible partner in the fight for LGBTQ equality and representation. For the last 7 years he’s led @HRC through a critical moment in our community’s history. Thanks for all you’ve done, Chad — can’t wait to see what comes next.https://t.co/D6TzMax1Y0
— Annise Parker (@AnniseParker) November 15, 2018
Many are hoping HRC chooses someone more diverse as Griffin’s successor.
extremely hopeful HRC realizes choosing another cisgender gay white man to take over after Chad Griffin’s departure would be tantamount to PR suicide
— Kevin O'Keeffe (@kevinpokeeffe) November 15, 2018
They plan to begin the search in the coming weeks.