Rebecca Isaacs

Save the Date for Summer Meeting 2015!

Every year, the Equality Federation Institute hosts its annual Summer Meeting, bringing together LGBT movement leaders from across the country to build skills and forge connections that strengthen the incredible work that’s happening in all the communities we call home. Even as many of us are still energized from the 2014 Summer Meeting in Minneapolis, next year’s meeting will be here before you know it, and we want you to save the date!

July 1, 2024
We’re Hiring a Communications Director

The Federation is looking for a talented and experienced leader who will communicate our brand to our supporters and engage in strategic partnerships with our members. As we continue to build our organization, we are seeking an individual who can help us expand as the movement builder and strategic partner to state-based organizations advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people.

July 1, 2024
Federation Bids Farewell to Jace Woodrum

The Federation’s Director of Communications, our beloved Jace Woodrum, is leaving us to join the team at the Gill Foundation in Denver, Colorado. Over the past 15 months, Jace has revolutionized our communications with our members, partners, donors, and supporters. Never before have so many people understood what our team does and what impact we’re making in the movement.

July 1, 2024
VIDEO: State and National Movement Leaders Reflect on the Federation’s Impact at Summer Meeting 2014

Another Summer Meeting has come and gone, and as in year’s past, our gathering in Minneapolis was full of moments to remember. This year, in what was one of the biggest highlights for me personally, the Federation team took a few moments to tell participants about our work and our vision for the state-based movement in the years to come.

July 1, 2024
Moving Forward After Today’s Executive Orders

Just moments ago, I was standing in the East Room of the White House as President Obama signed two historic executive orders. For the first time in the history of our country, federal contractors can no longer discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, and transgender employees in the federal civil service are explicitly protected from discrimination.

July 1, 2024
Get to Know Our New Member Representative Candidates for the Board

In just a few short weeks, our members will have the chance to vote on our new slate of member representatives to the Equality Federation and Equality Federation Institute Board of Directors.

July 1, 2024
What’s Next: Building Strong LGBTQ Organizations Beyond the Marriage Milestone

From critical victories in legislatures to historic wins in the courts to huge jumps in the polls — we’ve had unstoppable momentum for marriage equality these past few years. We’re closer than we’ve ever been to winning the freedom to marry for all couples all across this country.

July 1, 2024
Federation Members Tell President Obama: No Broad Religious Exemptions in Executive Order

In the wake of the Supreme Court’s unprecedented decision in Hobby Lobby, LGBT advocates working across the country are deeply concerned about what will happen next, especially as the President’s staff prepares an executive order protecting LGBT people from discrimination by federal contractors.

July 1, 2024
Get to Know Our New At-Large Board Members

Soon our board of directors will vote on three new at-large members: Michael Lewis, Julia Rosen, and Curtis Thornhill (the exceptional candidates we introduced to you just a few weeks ago). These incredible leaders will help to expand the board’s reach in order to better equip the Equality Federation and the Equality Federation Institute to be the strategic partner to the state-based movement.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation Welcomes Jenn Curtin as Program Associate

All of us at Equality Federation are proud to welcome Jenn Curtin to our team as Program Associate.Jenn has been with the Federation as an intern for the past year working with our Communications Director Jace Woodrum.

July 1, 2024
Obama Administration Demonstrates Incredible Leadership for LGBT Equality

This is what leadership looks like. In a series of announcements over the past several weeks, the Obama administration has taken critical steps to protect LGBT Americans. These groundbreaking changes in U.S. policy are making it easier for LGBT Americans to earn a living, provide for themselves and their families, and pursue health and happiness.

July 1, 2024
Published in The Advocate: The Movement After Marriage

When I first got involved in the movement to advance the rights of LGBT people, I joined a cohort of those who worked hard to create the extraordinary moment we are living in now. It feels great to have reached this milestone alongside many of my colleagues from back then and with the many young activists who have joined our ranks in the last 30 years.

July 1, 2024
Federation Introduces Slate of Board Candidates

A few weeks ago, our board chairs shared some exciting news: we are expanding the board to include more at-large members! This growth will allow the Federation to continue serving state-based organizations to the highest degree and advancing equality in all the communities we call home.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation Responds to the Results of November 2020 Election

Equality Federation responds to the historic results of the November 3, 2020 election in which media outlets announced a win for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.The following statement can be attributed to Rebecca Isaacs, Executive Director of Equality Federation.

July 1, 2024
Historic Victory in Virginia!

We can officially celebrate! Governor Northam's signature made Virginia the first state in the South and 21st in the nation to ensure LGBTQ people are explicitly protected from discrimination.

July 1, 2024
Your City Enacted LGBTQ Protections! Oop, Your State Just Killed Them

The LGBTQ community is no stranger to state overreach – when legislatures swoop in to eradicate local nondiscrimination measures or take other sweeping actions that, ultimately, hurt our ability to live, work, and raise our families free from discrimination. In fact, the first time most Americans even became aware of the concept of preemption legislation was when North Carolina enacted HB 2 – the discriminatory law that attacked the very humanity of transgender people, and eviscerated local nondiscrimination measures across the Tar Heel state.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation's Annual Report

Dear Supporters,In 2018, our 43 state-based member organizations made a lot of headway despite the tough political struggles at the national level. Equality Federation is a strategic partner to our member organizations, making sure that the whole movement for LGBTQ equality and justice is linked, from one end of the country to the other.

July 1, 2024
State Equality Index: Momentum Builds for LGBTQ Equality!

Today, Equality Federation and Human Rights Campaign released the annual State Equality Index (SEI). This report illuminates the hard work of our member organizations from Equality Florida to Mass Equality to Equality Texas.

July 1, 2024
We Made History! The Rainbow Wave...

You should feel proud today. Overall, last night was a strong rebuke of discrimination and hatred and a celebration of what makes this nation strong: our diversity.

July 1, 2024
Municipal Equality Index: How does your town score?

In this political moment, as we face unprecedented challenges to fairness, justice, and democracy at the federal level, we look to localities to lead the way in advancing equality for the LGBTQ community. Equality Federation is committed to our partnership with HRC on the Municipal Equality Index because it sets a bar that most localities want to reach.

July 1, 2024
Good news: Have you seen these LGBTQ victories?

Every day you are bombarded with bad news. And although there is a lot to be angry about, we want to bring some sunshine into your newsfeed.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation Responds to Justice Kennedy’s Retirement

While he is sadly ending his career after three unfortunate rulings on the rights of workers, religious discrimination, and reproductive rights, several of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s deciding votes in years past pushed the trajectory of LGBTQ equality toward fairness and justice, including his vote on marriage equality.

July 1, 2024
Being visible as an LGBTQ person or family is a deeply important act of love and resistance.

July 1, 2024
Businesses Serving the Public Should be Open to All

When two-year-old Katie fell and knocked her tooth out, her mom, Jane, did what any mom would do, she rushed her crying, bleeding child to the dentist. But when she arrived, the dentist told her, “A child cannot have two mothers so the ‘real mom’ has to be here.”

July 1, 2024
20 Years Strong!

In 1997, a few LGBTQ movement leaders, including our current executive director, Rebecca Isaacs, came together at the Highlander Center in Tennessee. Sitting in a circle of rocking chairs in the room where Rosa Parks was trained in civil disobedience, they envisioned coming together as a state-based movement to form the “Federation of Statewide LGBT Political Organizations.” From that loose network, an organization grew.

July 1, 2024
These Stories Need Heard: Conversion "Therapy," HIV Stigma, & Thriving While Trans

One thing our movement has learned for sure is that our stories have the power to transform hearts and minds, and that we must never be silent. Last week, the keynote speakers at our 20th Annual Leadership Conference provided extraordinary examples of that.

July 1, 2024
Meet the Passionate Sponsors of Equality Federation's Leadership Conference!

We are so proud to have had the support of each of our sponsors at our 2017 Leadership Conference last week in Alexandria, Virginia. At Equality Federation, our partnerships go beyond simple monetary support – each and every sponsor works with us in the LGBTQ movement.

July 1, 2024
Finding Hope in the Resistance: 20 Years of Winning Equality

“With Equality Federation celebrating its 20th anniversary, this year marks two decades of state equality groups coming together to strategize, share, and learn from each other. We believe that we are stronger and better together, and our record proves it.

July 1, 2024
Trump's Executive Order

Today President Trump signed a troubling and unnecessary executive order (full text below) that directs the Justice Department to draft religious exemptions guidelines that could promote anti-LGBT discrimination, promotes limiting access to contraception, and promotes partisan political spending by churches.

July 1, 2024
Get to Know Our New At-Large Board Members and Member Representative Candidates

Recently, our board of directors voted on two new at-large members. In just a few short weeks, our members will have the chance to vote on our new slate of member representatives to the Equality Federation and Equality Federation Institute Board of Directors.

July 1, 2024
We're Hiring a Director of Development

The Equality Federation is looking for a highly skilled, enthusiastic and motivated leader to become our Director of Development. As we continue to build our organization, we are seeking an individual who can help us expand as the movement builder and strategic partner to state-based organizations advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people.

July 1, 2024
Solidarity from Baltimore to Ferguson

Equality Federation expresses our strong solidarity with the the family of Freddie Gray, local community leaders, and many community protesters in Baltimore, as well as those raising their voices across the country. We are also calling for meaningful, systemic change so that no lives are lost or negatively impacted in the future by mass incarceration or police brutality.

July 1, 2024
Registration for Summer Meeting 2015 Now Open!

Each year, the Equality Federation Institute holds the Summer Meeting to bring together the sharpest minds and the most strategic players in the movement for LGBT equality. More than 160 leaders join us to connect and forge relationships, collaborate for future success and build momentum toward even greater wins in the communities we call home.

July 1, 2024
Save the Date: Summer Meeting 2015 Will Be Here Soon!

Every year, the Equality Federation Institute hosts its annual Summer Meeting, bringing together LGBT movement leaders from across the country to build skills and forge connections that strengthen the incredible work that’s happening in all the communities we call home.

July 1, 2024
Thank You for Supporting the Federation in 2014

To call 2014 an exciting year is an understatement -- and the year isn’t over yet!In just one year, we’ve already seen incredible advances for our movement -- marriage equality in states across the nation; municipal wins to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals from discrimination; and activists working together across issue areas to protect our nation’s youngest and most vulnerable populations.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation Welcomes Mark Snyder as Director of Communications

All of us at Equality Federation are proud to welcome Mark Snyder to our team as Director of Communications. He will begin working at the Federation next month, and is looking forward to connecting with many of you very soon.

July 1, 2024
Federation Bids Farewell to Renee Perry

After seven years with the Federation, our wonderful colleague Renée Perry is stepping down from her position as Director of Operations. During her time with us, Renée has kept our completely distributed organization running smoothly across four time zones.

July 1, 2024
2014 State of the States, Part 1: Funding the State-based Movement

Since 2006, the State of the States report by Equality Federation has documented the strength and sustainability of state-based advocacy organizations that advance equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the communities they call home. Over the past eight years, State of the States has faithfully documented our movement’s triumphs and trials as reflected in the capacity of our state-based organizations.

July 1, 2024
The 2013 Equality Federation Annual Report: Winning At Home

The movement for full LGBT equality is making incredible headway and state-based equality organizations have played a critical role. That’s why I’m proud to share with you Equality Federation’s 2013 Annual Report, which provides a look at how we work with states to make change happen at the local and state level.

July 1, 2024
Marriage is Now Legal for the Majority of Americans

This is what progress looks like. On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court quietly extended the freedom to marry to same-sex couples in five states.

July 1, 2024
Staying Engaged with Your Staff

Running an organization can be hard work. From supporting a board to interacting with donors to representing your brand -- being a successful leader takes commitment. One of the greatest responsibilities of an Executive Director is being a strong manager. And one way you can improve your management skills is through interactions with staff.

July 1, 2024
Urgent: Are you with us?

Like you, I am still grappling with the sadness, anger, and shock over the victory of a candidate who could not be more removed from our values, and the values of my daughter’s generation. This is a candidate who stirred-up bigotry, racism, and misogyny that has seriously divided our country.

July 1, 2024
the fight for equality continues

The election results are devastating. The Equality Federation staff and I are deeply saddened today as we grapple with the reality that the country has elected Donald Trump, who campaigned on racism, homophobia, sexism, xenophobia—sentiments based in fear and hatred.

July 1, 2024
Thanks to the Sponsors of Equality!

The Equality Federation Institute is proud of the diverse group of sponsors supporting our Leadership Conference this year in Portland, Oregon. The annual Leadership Conference brings together LGBTQ leadership from around the nation for 4 days of planning, presenting our successes and challenges, and fellowship in order to guide and build the movement for the next year and beyond.

July 1, 2024
Tell the FDA: Lift the Blood Ban!

I lived in San Francisco during the height of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. It was a terrifying time full of despair, loss, and anger as we lost so many members of our community. I remember seeing the blood drive vans parked in the heart of the Castro, the city’s gay neighborhood, when gay men were turned away from donating blood to their own community in need.

July 1, 2024
How We’re Going to Win Equality in 2016

With barely a moment to take a deep breath, the LGBTQ community is back in the trenches, ready to fight for equality and justice in a critical legislative year. Immediately following a historic victory on marriage, after the balloons and confetti, we faced a tide of anti-LGBTQ attacks.

July 1, 2024
President Obama Supports Equality Act

We applaud President Obama for his support of the Equality Act, an important piece of legislation that would help ensure all Americans, including LGBTQ people and their families, are fully and clearly protected from discrimination. The announcement builds upon seven years of this administration’s support. They have extended hospital visitation to LGBTQ families, ended discrimination among federal employees and contractors, supported marriage equality, opposed conversion therapy, and so much more.

July 1, 2024
The Top 9 Funders of the State-Based LGBTQ Movement & More

One year ago, many of us worried that people wouldn’t understand the need to continue contributing to our movement for equality after marriage equality was secured. Ironically, thanks in part to the media firestorms generated by far-right attacks on our civil liberties such as the religious exemption bill in Indiana and cause célèbre du jours like Kim Davis, it is more likely that our funders and donors understand the need for a strong state-based LGBTQ movement.

July 1, 2024
4 End-Of-Year Fundraising Resources

It's almost that time of year again - time for the final big push and pull for donations. While reaching your year end goals may feel out of reach and loom on the horizon, fear not.

July 1, 2024
The Magic of Equality Federation Institute's Summer Meeting!

 Wow! I am still energized from Equality Federation Institute's Summer Meeting that was held in Charlotte just a few weeks ago. Our state-based leaders and national partners bring to the table incredible enthusiasm, creativity, and grit - that unique courage and strength of character it takes to fight for equality.

July 1, 2024
Why Minnesota is the Perfect Location for Summer Meeting 2014

When Equality Federation Institute was looking for a city to host our annual Summer Meeting, we were looking for a place that embodies our commitment to working locally, to building a true grassroots movement, and to winning big, even when it’s hard.We found it all in Minneapolis, with member organization OutFront Minnesota as our host.

July 1, 2024
Member Resource: Respect for Marriage Coalition Releases Marriage Equality Litigation Updates

It’s been almost a year since the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in Windsor v. United States, and in that short time, we have seen a promising surge in impact litigation to secure marriage for same-sex couples. In fact, since the Supreme Court’s ruling last summer, not one federal judge has ruled against the freedom to marry.

July 1, 2024
Focus on the South

At this critical moment for our movement, the South is playing a growing role in the fight for full equality. And the state-based movement, working with local and national partners, is key to success.

July 1, 2024
Registration for Summer Meeting 2014 Now Open!

It’s time to start thinking about summer. Warm breezes, green trees, vacation days. And Summer Meeting.Each year, the Equality Federation Institute hosts the Summer Meeting to bring together the sharpest minds and the most strategic players in the movement for LGBT equality.

July 1, 2024
Report from the Public Religion Research Institute Finds Changing Religious Landscape as Support for Same-Sex Marriage Grows

Just over ten years ago, Massachusetts became the first state to legalize marriage for same-sex couples. At this time, only 32% of Americans supported the freedom to marry. Since 2003, this percentage has increased 21 points, with 53% of Americans now showing support for same-sex marriage, transforming the American religious landscape.

July 1, 2024
Supporting the Federation in 2014

Here at the Federation, the year has gotten off to an exciting start as our team implements our 2014 plan. Through our programs in leadership development, policy advocacy and organizational development, we’re poised to make a huge impact in the coming months.

July 1, 2024
Marriage Momentum Round-Up

Last week, I wrote about the incredible momentum we're seeing for marriage, even in the reddest states. But in just a few days, I was already out-of-date.The progress being made on marriage is happening so fast, it's unlike anything we've ever seen in the LGBT movement. I never thought I'd say this, but it's hard to keep up.

July 1, 2024
Save the Date for Summer Meeting 2014

Every year, the Equality Federation Institute hosts its annual Summer Meeting, bringing together LGBT movement leaders from across the country to build skills and create strong connections. This year’s meeting will be here before you know it, and it's time to mark your calendars and save the date!

July 1, 2024
Marriage Efforts Move Forward, Even in the Reddest States

Thinking back to this time last year, I certainly didn’t expect to be looking at an equality map showing that 17 states and the District of Columbia have extended the freedom to marry to same-sex couples. But in nearly every region of this country, we’ve seen monumental progress that has dramatically changed the map.

July 1, 2024
Winning Nondiscrimination Protections in Pennsylvania

It took hundreds of hours, thousands of miles, and countless conversations. But it was worth it.As a result of that work, the Equality Federation helped secure more than $650,000 to fuel the campaign to win nondiscrimination protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Pennsylvanians. That brings our “dollars marshaled” total to more than $1.5 million invested in state-based campaigns.

July 1, 2024
Equality Federation Welcomes Andy Garcia as Program Manager

All of us at Equality Federation Institute are proud to welcome Andy Garcia as Program Manager. Andy has joined our nondiscrimination team and will work with veteran movement leaders Roey Thorpe and Anne Stanback to implement our expanded program focused on advancing policies that protect LGBT people from discrimination.

July 1, 2024
The New Federation Insider Offers Great Resources Just For Our Members

In June, the Federation launched a weekly "Members Only" newsletter for member staff and boards as well as a biweekly "Friends of the Fed" newsletter for our supporters, donors and friends. Over the past few months, we've gotten a wealth of positive feedback about our new communications, and we've also heard some great suggestions.

July 1, 2024
We're Hiring a Program Manager

Despite the significant advances that have been made to win marriage for same-sex couples, a majority of states in this country still lack basic protections for LGBT people in employment, housing, and public accommodations. At the Equality Federation, we're working to change that.

July 1, 2024
A Month of Marriage Wins

In the course of just one month, our movement has charged forward -- winning marriage for same-sex couples in three more states. Like many of you, I’m in awe of what has happened in just a matter of weeks.

July 1, 2024
Building Momentum for Change: How Local and Incremental Policy Campaigns Contribute to Statewide Victories

Here at the Equality Federation Institute, we know that local and incremental work matters. That’s why we began an investigation into the impact these campaigns have on our movement.

July 1, 2024
The 2012 Equality Federation Annual Report: Winning Equality in Communities We Call Home

As I look back on the past year, I’m still in awe. State organizations accomplished game-changing victories that were nothing short of historic. That’s why I’m proud to share with you Equality Federation’s 2012 Annual Report, which offers a small look into our role in last year’s incredible wins.

July 1, 2024
The Federation Welcomes Anne Stanback as Director of State and National Partnerships

The Federation is proud to welcome Anne Stanback to our team, as Director of State and National Partnerships. Many of you already know Anne as she's spent nearly 30 years in our movement -- including spending the past year working as a consultant with us. We're thrilled that Anne will continue the work she started as a consultant -- now as a full-time staff member based in Connecticut.

July 1, 2024
The Federation's Expanded Communications: How It's Already Making a Big Impact with State Groups

For years, our members have requested assistance and guidance in the area of communications. And although we have always been able to connect state groups with resources and provide some useful advice, we simply weren’t equipped to offer comprehensive communications support.

July 1, 2024
Welcoming Our New Board of Directors

Each Summer Meeting, we bid farewell to board members who have completed their terms, and we welcome new officers and directors who will lead the Federation through the coming year. 

July 1, 2024
Reflections on a Legendary Summer Meeting

Summer Meeting 2013 just wrapped, and I’m feeling inspired and energized by the three incredible days we spent together in Salt Lake City.

July 1, 2024
Frequently Asked Questions for a Post-DOMA World

Every day since the Supreme Court issued its landmark ruling striking down DOMA, we’re faced with more questions about how the decision will impact same-sex couples across the nation.

July 1, 2024
Less Than Two Weeks Until Summer Meeting

We're in the home stretch now! In less than two weeks, I'll stand up in Salt Lake City and welcome you all to our 16th Annual Summer Meeting. Honestly, as the days tick away, I can't decide what I'm more excited about -- the informative workshops or the incredible social events.

July 1, 2024
Welcome to the New Federation

As you may have noticed, over the past month, we’ve been rolling out a number of exciting changes to our communications. Thanks to the support of several key donors, the Federation added Jace Woodrum, a seasoned communications operative, to our team in June.

July 1, 2024
DOMA, the First Battle in the Immigration War

On Wednesday, just 30 minutes after the Supreme Court announced its decision striking down section 3 the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, a New York judge halted the deportation of a Colombian man married to a gay American citizen.

July 1, 2024
Welcome to Our New Director of Communications, Jace Woodrum

Equality Federation is pleased to announce the hiring of Jace Woodrum as our first-ever Director of Communications.Jace brings to the Federation more than eight years of experience in communications and three years working with LGBT organizations, including one of our member groups: One Colorado.

July 1, 2024
A young man looking up, smilingA young man smiling straight at the camera
Confident young woman standing with crossed arms.

Want To Make A Difference? Support Our Work

With your support, we'll be able to continue our work to build the leaders of today and tomorrow, strengthen state-based LGBTQ+ organizations, and make critical progress on the issues that matter most—like protecting transgender people, ending HIV criminalization and ensuring access to care, and banning conversion therapy across the country.