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Cheryl Jacques      

Former President and Executive Director of the Human Rights Campaign; Speaker on issues of diversity, civil rights and politics

Cheryl Jacques has written and spoken nationally on issues of diversity, civil rights and politics.

She formerly served as president and executive director of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). Jacques led HRC through the successful defeat of the anti-gay Federal Marriage Amendment. She oversaw significant growth in fundraising and membership, including a record $30M budget for 2004 and a membership that now exceeds 600,000. She vastly increased the organizations internal and external diversity and established a strong national presence with a record amount of media coverage.

Jacques took the helm of HRC after serving nearly a dozen years in the Massachusetts State Senate. She was first elected to her seat at the relatively young age of 29 in a traditionally conservative district, proving her ability to speak to constituents across a spectrum of ideologies.

As a State Senator, Jacques was a leader on civil rights and equality in the Massachusetts Legislature. In 1996, she successfully pushed for the inclusion of sexual orientation in the Commonwealths Hate Crimes Statute. She also passed legislation establishing standby guardianship provisions to protect the children of AIDS patients and other chronically ill individuals. She has been an outspoken advocate for the needs of gay and lesbian youth in Massachusetts. She was a leading Senate advocate on civil rights, consumer protection, criminal justice and victims rights. She authored and passed over 40 pieces of legislation including the landmark Gun Control Act of 1995, the 1998 Consumer Protection Act and the 2000 Clergy Abuse Mandatory Reporting Act. In 2002, Jacques lead a bi-partisan coalition of legislators to defeat the so-called Defense of Marriage Act in Massachusetts.

Before her six terms in the State Senate, Jacques served as an Assistant District Attorney in Middlesex County and went on to serve as an Assistant Attorney General in the Trial Bureau of the Attorney Generals Office. She was an Adjunct Professor of Law at Suffolk University Law School, and served on several state and local boards.

Jacques lives with her spouse Jennifer, who serves as Executive Director of the Family Equality Council the nations largest organization dedicated exclusively to gay families. They live in Boston, Massachusetts, where they are raising their twin boys, Timmy and Tommy.


Cheryl Jacques
added over 8 years ago


Massachusetts Ethics Commission rules in favor of Cheryl Jacques ...

The Massachusetts Ethics Commission has dismissed allegations that an administrative law judge and former state senator violated conflict-of-interest law by ...

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