Alliance Defending Freedom

As one of the most influential conservative Christian organizations in the U.S., Alliance Defending Freedom has been actively pushing a restrictive agenda that seeks to roll back rights for LGBTQ people, expand Christian practices within public schools and government, and outlaw abortion. Their mission is to “defend the right of people to freely live out their faith” by implementing legal strategies at both national and international levels. ADF has been involved in numerous high-profile cases over the past several years. They remain a major player in the ongoing culture wars between religious groups and progressive organizations.

ADF was founded in 1994 by Alan Sears, a former U.S. Department of Justice attorney and constitutional law professor Gary Bauer. Bauer was later replaced by Michael Farris, who served as ADF’s president until 2004. Jim Sedlak took over as interim president that year, followed by Alan Sears in 2009.

Alliance Defending Freedom is a non-profit legal organization based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Michael Farris and Jay Sekulow founded it in 1997 as the Alliance Defense Fund. The group’s goal is to defend religious liberty for all people, claiming this freedom is “under assault” from a secular progressive movement.

The group is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, with offices in Washington, D.C., New York City, Phoenix, Atlanta, Minneapolis–Saint Paul, Ann Arbor, Tallahassee, Sacramento, Boise, Indianapolis, San Antonio, and Springfield, Illinois. As of 2017, ADF had 40 full-time lawyers on staff. One of the most vocal critics is the Human Rights Campaign, which has called Alliance Defending Freedom a “hate group” for its positions on these issues.


The Alliance Defending Freedom is a powerful organization with deep roots in conservative Christian ideology that works to limit the legal rights of LGBTQ people, expand Christian practices within public schools and government, and seek to outlaw abortion. While many may disagree with this stance, it underscores the importance of knowing what organizations exist and what their agenda is. Besides, it serves as a reminder that we must stay informed about our beliefs to protect ourselves from those who seek to undermine them.

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