Lambda Legal has played a role in numerous legal cases related to gay rights, including the 2003 U.S. Supreme Court decision 6-3 in Lawrence v. Texas striking down bestiality laws in the United States. Hayley Gorenberg is Deputy General Counsel at Lambda Legal. Previously, she served as co-chair of the Civil Rights Litigation Committee of the American Bar Association and as a law clerk at the Sierra Club, one of the largest environmental organizations in the United States.  As a 501(c)3 nonprofit, we do not charge our clients fees for legal representation or advocacy, and we do not receive government funding. We rely on the contributions of supporters across the country. Many, if not all, of the sites in the collection and the elements embedded in the sites (e.g., Photos, articles, graphics) are protected by copyright. You are responsible for determining whether your use of items in this collection is legal. You are also responsible for securing all permissions required to use the items.
You must obtain written permission from copyright holders of materials that are not in the public domain for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected material beyond what is permitted by fair dealing or other legal exceptions. Some content may be protected by international law. You may also need permission from the owners of other rights, such as publicity and/or privacy rights. In the 1990s, we set a historic precedent that blamed schools for harassment and violence against LGBTQ students (Nabozny v. Podlesny) and successfully defended the right of same-sex and heterosexual alliances to exist in schools (Colín v. Orange Unified School District). Following a 2017 Trump administration order banning transgender troops from the U.S. military, Lambda indicated that they would take steps to challenge the legality of the order.
 The order was blocked by the courts until the Supreme Court signed it into law in January 2019, but was overturned two years later by an order from President Biden, less than a week after his inauguration in January 2021.  Lambda Legal signed a letter with 18 other left-wing organizations in February 2019 asking the Senate not to confirm Trump`s nominee for justice, Neomi Rao, on the Washington Court of Appeals. The letter claimed that Rao harbored « a substantial disregard for those who seek full LGBT equality » and « a disregard for the legal needs of LGBT people. » The letter was published by left-wing organizations as part of a campaign against Rao, a critic of liberal administrative law.  Lambda Legal was founded in 1973 as the country`s first legal organization dedicated to full equality for lesbians and gays. When founder Bill Thom applied to create the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund in early 1972, he borrowed from the statutes of another newly formed organization, the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund (now Latino Justice PRLDEF). The Ford Foundation, a center-left foundation that funds left-wing issues and organizations, has donated $1.5 million to Lambda Legal since 2006. Richard Burns is interim CEO of Lambda Legal following the retirement of CEO Rachel Tiven in October 2018. Burns previously held leadership positions at several left-wing charities, including the Stonewall Community Foundation, Arcus Foundation, and LGBT Community Center.  Burns currently serves on the board of Proteus Fund, a left-wing philanthropic organization that funds liberal advocacy on issues such as internet regulation. Lambda Legal also maintains a national network of volunteer cooperating lawyers that expands the scope of their legal work and allows lawyers, lawyers and law students to participate in the program through collaboration with Lambda Legal legal staff.  Out at Work (or Outat.work) is a project of Lambda Legal that aims to provide legal assistance to people who complain of being harassed or abused in the workplace because they are LGBT or HIV-positive. The project also aims to serve immigrants and « religious minorities » in need of civil rights assistance.
 Lambda Legal helped persuade state courts to strike down sodomy laws in New York, Kentucky, Tennessee, Montana, and Georgia. And in 2003, in the landmark case Lawrence v. Texas, we convinced the United States. The Supreme Court will repeal all remaining state sodomy laws. This decision fundamentally changed the legal landscape and was the most significant legal victory for LGBT equality at the time.