OUTWORDS collects, archives and shares the experience and wisdom of LGBTQ pioneers, to serve as a model for enduring social change in the United States and beyond.


OUTWORDS envisions a world where the history of the LGBTQ civil rights struggle is preserved, and the unique identities of LGBTQ people are celebrated; where profiles of brave, brilliant LGBTQ pioneers are taught in every school in America; where the knowledge and wisdom accumulated over a half-century’s worth of queer activism empowers other marginalized communities in their quest for visibility, self-expression, and legal protections; where labels fade, categories expand, and authenticity abounds.


OUTWORDS uses the designation "queer" interchangeably with the acronyms LGBT, LGBTQ, LGBTQ+, and all their variations. We like “queer” as a catch-all term that bows to the fluidity and complexity of sexual and gender identity. We also recognize the term’s history of derogatory usage, and witness the lasting pain it has caused for some LGBTQ folks.

For resources on LGBTQ terminology, see these helpful glossaries: PFLAG, GLAAD, Trans Student Educational Resources. We also are big fans of the Conscious Style Guide.


OUTWORDS actively seeks candidates from diverse backgrounds and traditions, who vary by their race and ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, nationality, culture, religion, and physical and mental abilities. In our workplace as well as in our interactions with outside individuals and groups, we seek to foster an environment where new, unpopular and/or controversial ideas are safely expressed; and we encourage the exchange of such views in a spirit of mutual respect.