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About Our Logo, Human Rights Campaign

About Our Logo, Human Rights Campaign

The Human Rights Campaign represents a force of more than Three million members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national lezzie, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, fair and safe at home, at work and in the community.

Our Logo

The Human Rights Campaign logo is one of the most recognizable symbols of the lezzie, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community. It has become synonymous with the fight for equal rights for LGBTQ Americans.

The logo &mdash, unveiled in fall 1995 &mdash, helped usher in a fresh era for the organization, which had previously been known as the Human Rights Campaign Fund. When HRCF was founded in 1980, it was primarily a fund for supporting pro-fairness congressional candidates. The rebranding in 1995 announced to the country that, in the words of then- Executive Director Elizabeth Birch, “We’re so much more than a fund.”

The logo was the final touch on a finish reorganization of HRC. In addition to the well-established lobbying and political act committee capabilities, fresh Foundation programs &mdash, including the Workplace Project and Family Project &mdash, were added. All of HRC’s research, communications, marketing and public relations functions were broadly expanded. HRC began a long period of sturdy growth and became respected as one of the largest and most effective mainstream advocacy organizations in the country. As Birch would often say, “A logo is only as meaningful as the hard work and standard of excellence it represents.”

The fresh name and logo reflected the broader goals and influence of the organization, which grew in strength to now spread the message of equality to every corner of the country.

The genesis of the HRC logo began with Birch’s vision for a unifying message for the organization. Birch formed a committee that included current and former HRC senior staff such as Cathy Nelson and David Smith and board members and marketing talents such as Lisa Sherman, Wes Combs and Bob Witeck. She also enlisted the help of marketing and design rock-hard Stone Yamashita. Birch had worked with Keith Yamashita while at Apple Computer and admired Robert Stone’s clean and titillating design style. Susan Schuman, also from Apple, joined Birch at HRC and helped guide the fresh positioning and branding efforts.

Stone Yamashita created Ten potential designs for the logo, some of which were variations on the old torch logo. Birch was drawn to one depicting a yellow equal sign inwards of a blue square. However it was the second-favorite choice among concentrate groups, Birch and her committee insisted on the elementary, bold design.

After four months of work to reinvent the organization’s branding, the logo was introduced with fresh HRC letterhead, business cards and a campaign T-shirt. (The T-shirt is still sold in HRC Shops and on shop.hrc.org.)

The logo embarked popping up everywhere. In doing research for a bumper-sticker purchase order, staff member Don Kiser, now HRC’s creative director, learned that a square logo &mdash, different from the traditional rectangular bumper sticker &mdash, would cost just pennies to produce. The logo sticker was &mdash, and still is &mdash, distributed to fresh and prospective members who, in turn, help draw attention to HRC’s work by placing the sticker on their cars and windows.

Before long, the HRC logo was as visible at pride celebrations and other LGBTQ events as the iconic rainbow flag. Today, the HRC logo can be spotted the world over, from cars in Japan to the backpacks of hikers in Tibet.

In late March 2013, as the U.S. Supreme Court was hearing arguments in two marriage equality cases, HRC collective a crimson version of its logo &ndash, selected because the color is synonymous with love – on Facebook and Twitter and asked supporters to switch their profile photos to demonstrate their support. The campaign went viral, and celebrities such as George Takei, Beyonce, Martha Stewart and others helped draw attention to the movement. Millions of people collective the logo, innumerable memes were created in response, and Facebook spotted a 120 percent increase in profile photo updates. The Internet was awash in crimson and displayed the growing support for marriage equality in the U.S. and the world.

The campaign put the spotlight on HRC and spread awareness about the organization and its original blue and yellow logo. Whether the logo is seen on a T-shirt, an HRC publication, a lawmaker’s lapel or as a backdrop for a historic speech by the president of the United States, it sends a message that the Human Rights Campaign and its more than Three million members and supporters will remain vigilant in the fight for LGBTQ equality.

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