Since I first stepped foot in our offices 14 years ago, working for the ACLU of Arkansas has been an honor. I became a lawyer to defend the rights of vulnerable people and communities, and serving as the ACLU of Arkansas’s legal director has enabled me to fight alongside and for Arkansans in so many important ways.
I’m deeply honored that after a nationwide search, the ACLU of Arkansas Board of Directors entrusted me to become the new executive director of our affiliate.
For 50 years, the ACLU of Arkansas has been a small but mighty affiliate, consistently punching above our weight to take on - and win - the toughest fights. Together, we’ve blocked abortion bans and advanced racial justice and LGBTQ equality. We’ve battled the criminalization of poverty and challenged barriers to the ballot box. And never – ever – have we given in to cynicism or surrendered to the idea that these fights were too hard, or the political headwinds too fierce to make progress.
Our founders, board members, staff, volunteers, donors, clients, and supporters - past and present - have devoted time, heart and soul as a labor of love to make a more just state and nation for all people. To caretake that investment is a responsibility I will honor by continuing to work with our team, our supporters and our allies to push for the change we want and need to see.
Amid a global pandemic, a national uprising against racism, and on the eve of a general election that will have transformational consequences for our country, the work we do is more important than ever before. The ACLU of Arkansas team and ACLU staff, allies, and supporters have worked overtime and all on all cylinders to address the problems and needs that this pandemic has magnified.
Now more than ever, it is clear that none of our rights are secure unless every eligible voter has access to the ballot. That is why I am excited about our new grassroots effort – the Arkansas Voter Protection Project – that will work to safeguard the right to vote and make sure every voter in Arkansas can make their voice heard this November.
Of course, none of our work would be possible without the support of members and individuals like you. For 50 years, the ACLU of Arkansas has defended and advanced the civil liberties and civil rights of all Arkansans – and thanks to you, we’re poised to make an even greater impact in the future.