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Case Study

How the Human Rights Campaign doubled their national footprint and hosted over 1,000 events

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About the organization

As the largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Americans, the Human Rights Campaign represents a force of more than 3 million members and supporters nationwide — all committed to making HRC's vision a reality. HRC envisions a world where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

Organization type




About Human Rights Campaign:

As the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, Human Rights Campaign (HRC) envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work, and in the community.

The challenge:

HRC has both national events and state-specific events from local affiliates across the country. Before Mobilize, HRC and state affiliates were using NGP VAN along with a combination of tools that required a large amount of manual time, including monitoring volunteer signups through spreadsheets and on paper and clipboards. 

One of HRC’s greatest pain points was keeping branding and volunteer experience consistent across affiliates, and driving supporters from the HRC website to their local events.  

The solution:

HRC was one of Mobilize’s earliest partners, choosing Mobilize because of the branding consistency the platform and communications would offer. They also loved the auto-confirmations that would automate a huge part of the volunteer experience and save hours of staff time. On average, 50% of attendees signed up and 90% of confirmed volunteers showed up. 

“We are a national organization with 3 million members which means we often rely on our volunteer leadership having easy-to-use tools to rapidly organize in a moment's notice. Mobilize allows our organizing staff to double our footprint of available volunteer actions with features like promotions of our endorsed campaigns and volunteer-hosted distributed events.”
Jonathan Shields, Deputy Campaign Director, Mobilization

Mobilize’s cross-promotion feature allows the HRC national account to promote events hosted by partner organizations, endorsed candidates, and events hosted by HRC affiliates in battleground states. This is critical to finding new supporters; volunteers who come to HRC’s main website are driven to local affiliate events that they might not otherwise have found online. 

Additionally, being able to provide a dashboard for battleground states has provided a space for these states to build grassroots support and engage members and volunteers at the community level. 

In 2018, 4,031 shifts were scheduled across all of HRC’s dashboards from 2,446 unique volunteers. During the midterm elections that year, HRC was able to reach an estimated 166,000 through door-knocking, calling, and texting, all scheduled through Mobilize. 

“When we needed a solution for volunteer led watch parties for our televised 2020 LGBTQ Presidential Town Hall, we turned to Mobilize and almost overnight were able to generate tons of events in corners of the country we had never reached before.”
Jonathan Shields, Deputy Campaign Director, Mobilization

HRC also leveraged Mobilize’s distributed organizing feature, empowering their supporters to host events of their own. In October 2019, for CNN’s Power of Our Pride Presidential Townhall, HRC hosted 44 watch parties across the country, hosted by passionate supporters. 


HRC was ready to take their organizing program to the next level, and Mobilize provided the full toolset to realize the organization’s ambitious goals. Mobilize’s Success team assisted not only in the technical use of the product but also as thought partners in the building of a new and innovative organizing model. Throughout this partnership, HRC has hosted over 1,000 events on Mobilize, including member highlights, sexual health trivia nights, and activist holiday parties

“For both state and federal legislative advocacy as well as our election organizing efforts, we needed a volunteer events tool that was easy to use and deploy—especially as we scale up staff and volunteer leaders in short periods of time. Our organization simply could not achieve the scale needed to win elections or pass legislation without Mobilize. When election season heats up, we can easily create or promote hundreds of events for our endorsed candidates nationwide—up and down the ballot—and generate thousands of volunteer voter contacts.”
Jonathan Shields, Deputy Campaign Director, Mobilization

Currently, HRC is ramping up volunteer opportunities ahead of the 2020 election. Want to get involved? Sign up on their feed.