WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) announced that its president, Chad Griffin, he will leave his post at the organization in 2019 after serving it for seven years.

Under Griffin’s leadership, HRC has become a leader in the resistance to the Trump-Pence administration, has doubled its membership, staff and budget to meet its expanded goals and opportunities has led efforts to win marriage equality, introduced the Equality Act which would establish explicit federal civil rights protections for LGBTQ people, launched the largest grassroots expansion in the organization’s 38-year history ahead of the 2018 midterms, and established new programs to expand protections across the Deep South and around the globe.

In 2014, Griffin oversaw the launch of two transformational new initiatives to expand the reach of the organization’s work: Project One America, a campaign to dramatically expand LGBTQ equality across the Deep South through permanent campaigns in Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas; and HRC Global, which has leveraged HRC’s domestic work to expand the global equality movement. Previously the work of the Human Rights Campaign was focussed exclusively on domestic advocacy.

“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 shared. “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.

“Every single person across this country deserves an equal opportunity to succeed in life, without having to overcome roadblocks put in place by politicians advancing a discriminatory agenda. Even as I step down from my role in this remarkable organization, I remain committed to HRC’s mission and will continue to fight for the rights and dignity of LGBTQ people — and all Americans — as I embark on this next chapter. 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.”

A native of Hope, Ark., Griffin got his start volunteering in 1992 at the Clinton Campaign headquarters in Little Rock, working in the press office as Dee Dee Myers’s intern. He then began working in the West Wing press office of President Bill Clinton’s White House at the age of 19, becoming the youngest West Wing staffer ever. He is a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.

Griffin will remain in place to ensure a seamless, smooth transition while HRC’s Board of Directors leads a search process for the next president.

info: hrc.org.

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.