Press Room

February 03, 2005

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HRC Announces Creation of the Marriage Project

Move Designed to Accelerate and Focus Work

WASHINGTON - In a move designed to deliver added focus and energy to the organization's work around marriage equality, the Human Rights Campaign board leadership announced today the creation of the Marriage Project. The new program will be led by Seth Kilbourn, who has designed and implemented HRC's groundbreaking field work across the country.

"As we stepped back and examined our organizational structure, it was clear we needed to sharpen and galvanize our work supporting equal marriage rights," said Gwen Baba, co-chair of the HRC board of directors. "We're facing both opportunities and challenges, with unique regional undertones. And in Seth, we have one of the most creative and collaborative grassroots minds in the country to lead the project."

Kilbourn has been at HRC for eight years, and has led the field department for the last five. Under Seth's leadership, HRC has rapidly expanded its grassroots capacity launched the HRC Action Center, a web-based network of activists nationwide and brought an unprecedented level of HRC resources to state-level political work. In the last fiscal year, for example, HRC targeted $1.6 million on getting out the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and allied vote in targeted states, and invested $1.7 million in direct contributions to state GLBT organizations and ballot campaigns, including polling, messaging and on-the-ground activities.

"Marriage is dominating the political discourse at every level," said Kilbourn. "Our goal is to supplement, support and add value, whether that fight is in the courts, the legislature or at the ballot box. This is an exciting opportunity and I look forward to continuing to build upon our strong relationships with national partners and state organizations."

"We've got some real opportunities in the next year or two, and some humbling challenges," added Mike Berman, co-chair of the HRC board of directors. "We must be strategic and regionally sensitive, but continue to push forward and build broad-based support for full marriage equality wherever we can. Seth is just the right leader for us in this effort."

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