40th Anniversary
Celebrating 40 years of Race Forward

Throughout the past 40 years, Race Forward has worked with organizers, organizations, communities of color, government agencies, and leaders to dismantle structural racism by building power and transforming institutions. From the start, Race Forward founder Gary Delgado was clear: Black and brown communities have the answers to solve the racial inequities in our systems that negatively impact the lives and communities of people of color. 

Founded in 1981 as the Applied Research Center, Race Forward advances racial justice through research, media, and practice. In 1998, Race Forward began publishing the groundbreaking, award-winning Colorlines magazine with the goal of popularizing racial justice narratives and centering the people of color who fight for it. At the time, these stories were not being told by other media, particularly mainstream media.

In 2017, we increased our capacity to do this vital work by merging with the Center for Social Inclusion, which was founded in 2001 by Civil Rights Attorney Maya Wiley and Jocelyn Sargent, a political scientist. This merger expanded the “new” Race Forward’s work to incorporate the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE), a joint project formed in 2015 between CSI and the Haas Institute for a Fair & Inclusive Society (now the Othering and Belonging Institute), to work within government to help local and regional jurisdictions develop racially equitable practices and policies. Today, over 400 jurisdictions are members of the GARE network.

Recognizing the impact of policies and practices on our systems and structures,  we organize with communities, government, and other institutions to advance equitable outcomes for all people. 

Our work has not been easy, the racial justice movement has witnessed many victories, as well as a few setbacks over the past 40 years, but overall, we have seen significant, positive changes toward building a multiracial democracy. And we will continue to work until we get there! The timeline below highlights some of our accomplishments over the past 40 years.

We invite you to take action to help us continue to catalyze the racial justice movement and achieve a just, multiracial democracy in which all people, regardless of their race, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, and abilities are able to thrive.


Watch Our 40th Anniversary Celebration.

Race Forward 40th Anniversary Timeline

Explore 40 years of racial justice advocacy with Race Forward.

Keep informed about our future events and resources.

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