Kevin Cathcart, Former Lambda Legal Executive Director, Receives Top Honor from National LGBT Bar Association

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“LGBT rights would not be what they are today without the work of Kevin Cathcart.”
August 4, 2016

(New York, NY, August 4, 2016) — The National LGBT Bar Association today named Kevin Cathcart, retired Executive Director of Lambda Legal, recipient of its 2016 Dan Bradley Award. The award is the Association's highest honor, which recognizes outstanding members of the LGBT legal community whose work has led the way in the struggle for equality under the law.

During his 24-year tenure, Cathcart built Lambda Legal from a staff of 21 in 1992 to 106 today, and grew the legal team from five to 26 attorneys, overseeing a docket of more than 100 pending cases, ranging from fighting workplace discrimination and protecting LGBT youth to combatting HIV criminalization and pushing for the rights of transgender people.

Cathcart made Lambda Legal an unparalleled national force through its far-reaching litigation and public education. During his tenure, Lambda Legal won three major Supreme Court victories: Romer, Lawrence and Obergefell; brought the Boy Scouts policy of LGBT discrimination into the national conversation; fought the ban on openly gay and lesbian military servicemembers; and made schools aware of their legal responsibility to keep LGBT students safe from bullying and harassment.

"LGBT rights would not be what they are today without the work of Kevin Cathcart,” said Rachel B. Tiven, Kevin’s successor and CEO of Lambda Legal. “For more than two decades, Kevin has been a critical leader in our movement, a dedicated strategist and respected voice for our community. This is a richly deserved recognition, and all of us at Lambda Legal are thrilled that the National LGBT Bar Association has honored Kevin with this award."

In addition to the organization’s New York headquarters, Cathcart established regional offices in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dallas and Chicago, ensuring Lambda Legal has an ear to the ground across the country. Moreover, he has galvanized attorneys and law firms nationwide to contribute their legal resources toward the fight for LGBT justice, enabling Lambda Legal’s civil rights and legal expertise to be consistently leveraged nationwide.

More about the award: Dan Bradley was the first chair of the American Bar Association Section of Individual Rights and Responsibility’s Committee on the Rights of Gay People, now known as the Committee for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. Bradley saw the law as a powerful instrument of social justice, and he believed that lawyers had an obligation to place their skills as advocates at the service of the least powerful among us.


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