Our Common Purpose
The Leadership Conference’s founders came together in 1950 out of the belief that the fight for civil rights could not be won by one group alone, but needed to be waged in coalition.
Our members — which have grown from 30 civil and human rights organizations at our founding to more than 200 today — differ in size, scope, and structure. But what transcends our differences and unites The Leadership Conference coalition is our enduring common purpose: full equality for all.
That common purpose gave our leaders the wisdom to see that civil rights are women’s rights and LGBTQ rights and immigrant rights and workers’ rights and disability rights and human rights. That common purpose is our coalition’s inheritance. It is a living legacy that binds us together — in cause and community.
Together, we are more than the sum of our parts. We not only convene and direct the power of our coalition members — we magnify it. Through the generations, we have worked to realize a nation that celebrates the voices and power of the people. We continue that work today.
“The struggle of civil rights cannot be won by any one group acting by or for itself alone, but only through a coalition of groups that share a common commitment to equal justice and equal opportunity for everyone.”
– Arnold Aronson, co-founder
Join Our Coalition
For more information on how to become a member, please contact Lisa Haywood, director of membership services and events. Please note that to be eligible for membership, an organization must share The Leadership Conference’s values and vision for a just and fair democracy, be national in scope, and conduct an ongoing civil rights program.
Who We Are
AAUW (formerly known as the American Association of University Women)
OCA (formerly known as Organization of Chinese Americans)
PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays)
UnidosUS (formerly National Council of La Raza)