International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission Announces Change in Leadership

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Roberta Sklar, 917.704.6358

(New York, May 17th, 2012) — The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) announced today that Cary Alan Johnson, a leader for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) human rights, has stepped down as Executive Director. The Board has appointed Jessica Stern, Director of Programs, as Acting Executive Director.

"We sincerely thank Cary for his years of service to IGLHRC and his leadership in the organization’s world-wide mission,” said Todd Larson, Board Co-Chair. "Cary has been and will remain a stalwart advocate for the advancement of basic human rights for the LGBT community, and we wish him well in his future endeavors."

Johnson said, "As one of the early members of this organization, I will always be one of its staunchest supporters. I’m privileged to have been able to partner with so many intelligent and courageous human rights defenders in this work. After 7 years on the IGLHRC staff and many others as a member of the Board of Directors and Advisory Board, I am moving on, and I will be working to finish a major writing project that has been on my agenda. I have no doubt that IGLHRC will continue to advance our movement and help lead our communities to full access to human rights.”

Jessica Stern is a recognized voice in the international human rights community. She is IGLHRC’s representative at world bodies, including the United Nations. She was on the team that achieved IGLHRC’s consultative status at the United Nations and campaigned with partners globally to restore reference to sexual orientation in a landmark resolution condemning extrajudicial and arbitrary executions at the UN General Assembly.

Board Co-Chair Dorothy Sander continued, "IGLHRC has a strong and deep management team. Jessica Stern has repeatedly demonstrated a unique capacity to work collaboratively with colleagues and stakeholders while continuing to propel IGLHRC forward as a sensitive and unwavering advocate of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender human rights, advancing human rights for everyone everywhere."

(For more information on Jessica Stern, go to The Yale Undergraduate Law Review:


The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), founded in 1990, is a leading international human rights organization dedicated to improving the lives of people who experience discrimination or abuse on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. We are dedicated to strengthening the capacity of the LGBT human rights movement worldwide to conduct documentation of LGBT human rights violations and by engaging in human rights advocacy with partners around the globe. We work with the United Nations, regional human rights monitoring bodies and civil society partners. IGLHRC holds consultative status at the United Nations as a recognized Non-Governmental Organization representing the concerns and human rights of lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender people worldwide. For more information about the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission visit: