Human Rights Campaign chief to leave organization next year

Human Rights Campaign chief to leave organization next year
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Human Rights Campaign (HRC) President Chad Griffin is set to leave his role at the organization next year. 

Chad Griffin told HRC'S Board of Directors on Thursday that he intends to step down in 2019 after seven years leading HRC, the nation's largest LGBTQ rights advocacy organization.

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During his tenure, Griffin became one of the most visible LGBT rights activists in the country. His time heading up the organization spanned historic shifts in LGBT rights, including the Supreme Court's landmark 2015 ruling in favor of gay marriage. 

"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 released by HRC.

The announcement of his departure comes on the heels of a midterm election cycle that saw HRC step up its grassroots organizing power. HRC spent an estimated $26 million during the 2018 elections, deploying 150 staff members to campaign and mobilize voters in key races across the country. 

Griffin campaigned for 50 candidates the organization deemed "pro-equality," appearing at more than 70 events for candidates in the months before Election Day, HRC noted in the announcement. 

"For decades, this organization has shown the world that love conquers hate," Griffin said. "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." 

Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisSan Francisco police chief apologizes for raid on journalist's home Gillibrand seizes on abortion debate to jump-start campaign Senate Democrats to House: Tamp down the impeachment talk MORE (D-Calif.), a progressive who has championed LGBT causes, told the Associated Press that Griffin "was a leader in the moment he was needed to lead." 

Griffin has not announced what his next plans are, but Dan Pfeiffer, a White House adviser to former President Obama, told the Associated Press that "every person in the Democratic Party is going to call Chad."