Sep 20, 2022 - Politics & Policy

First Black queer woman to serve as Human Rights Campaign's president

Kelley Robinson holds her son. Photo: Jemal Countess via Getty Images for Supermajority

The country's largest LGBTQ advocacy group announced Tuesday that a Black, queer woman will serve as its president for the first time in its history.

The big picture: Kelley Robinson replaces Alphonso David, who left the Human Rights Campaign after an investigation into his role in helping former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) respond to sexual harassment allegations.

Driving the news: Robinson joins HRC after working as executive director of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, where she helped grow its supporters from 6.5 million in 2012 to more than 18 million, according to the HRC.

  • She started her advocacy career as a community organizer for former president Barack Obama's 2008 campaign in Missouri.
  • She pulls inspiration from her family’s legacy as the first free Black family in Muscatine, Iowa, per HRC.

What they're saying: "This is a pivotal moment in our movement for equality for LGBTQ+ people," Robinson said in a statement. "We, particularly our trans and BIPOC communities, are quite literally in the fight for our lives and facing unprecedented threats that seek to destroy us."

  • "This next chapter of the Human Rights Campaign is about getting to freedom and liberation without any exceptions — and today I am making a promise and commitment to carry this work forward."

Worth noting: Robinson, who will officially assume her role on Nov. 28, will take the helm at a time of increasing attacks on LGBTQ people and their rights.

Go deeper: Human Rights Campaign opens probe into president's involvement in Cuomo scandal

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