Mission & History
We are a journalist-led association working within the news media to advance fair and accurate coverage of LGBTQ+ communities and issues. We promote diverse and inclusive workplaces by holding the industry accountable and providing education, professional development and mentoring.
We envision fair representation and respect of diverse LGBTQ+ communities in newsrooms and news coverage.
NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists at a Glance
NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists’ National Board of Directors, chapter leadership and members come from rural to major metropolitan print, broadcast, and online newsrooms, as well as community-based LGBTQ+ media, academic institutions, and the public relations and communications profession. Our strength and respect in the industry comes from the diversity of our membership.
NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists History
In April 1989, the American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) mandated that ASNE conduct its first ever survey of LGBTQ+ journalists in American newspapers. In April 1990, Roy Aarons presented the results of the landmark survey, Alternatives: Gays and Lesbians in the Newsroom, at ASNE’s national convention in Washington, D.C. and simultaneously came out publicly.
Inspired by the report, LGBTQ+ journalists from across the United States and across media platforms expressed a desire to create a professional organization. Under Roy’s guidance, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists was formally incorporated in 1991 and chapters were formed throughout the country.
True to its founders’ goals, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists is a strong voice in the news industry, educating newsroom decision-makers about coverage of the LGBTQ+ community, promoting non-discrimination policies and the establishment of equal benefits, and creating educational opportunities to support the next generation of LGBTQ+ newsroom leaders. The dramatic positive shift in the quality and quantity of news coverage of the LGBTQ+ community is due to members working within their newsrooms to educate peers about fairness and accuracy.
NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ+ Journalists Goals
- Enhance the professionalism, skills and career opportunities for LGBTQ+ journalists.
- Strengthen the identity, respect and status of LGBTQ+ journalists in the newsroom and throughout the practice of journalism.
- Advocate for the highest journalistic and ethical standards in the coverage of LGBTQ+ issues.
- Collaborate with other professional journalist associations and promote the principles of inclusion and diversity within our ranks.
- Provide mentoring and leadership to future journalists.