Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), the precedent-setting legal organization that has fought for LGBTQ and HIV rights for nearly 40 years, is announcing a new name: GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD).

GLAD, which is widely recognized for its outsized impact, brought marriage equality first to Massachusetts, and then to the nation with the 2015 Supreme Court victory in Obergefell v. Hodges. GLAD’s work has produced breakthroughs for transgender rights, school safety, second-parent adoptions, protections for people living with HIV, and much more. Three GLAD attorneys have argued before the U.S. Supreme Court.

When GLAD was formed in 1978 in response to an anti-gay sting operation at the Boston Public Library, its founders deliberately put the words “gay” and “lesbian” in the organization’s name, to put the words, the community, and the individuals who comprised the community clearly and openly in front of judges, lawyers, and the entire legal system.

“GLAD has blazed a trail of legal victories for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer people across New England and the nation,” said Janson Wu, Executive Director of GLAD. “As we continue our pioneering work, we’re proud to bring all of our communities into our name.”

GLAD will continue using its core tools of litigation, public policy advocacy, and public education to achieve groundbreaking precedents in LGBTQ rights. The organization is also deepening and expanding its work on economic and racial equity, strengthening partnerships with other LGBTQ and allied organizations, and increasing its focus on access to justice for all.

“We’re excited about the work ahead, and the prospect of bringing our experience, expertise, and passion to the project of making our world more just and more fair,” said GLAD’s Board Chair, Dianne Phillips.  The new name was adopted unanimously by the board and is supported enthusiastically by the staff.

For more on GLAD’s new name, visit

Check out this short video to learn more about how GLAD is moving equality forward #FORALL of us.

YouTube video