Subscribe to RSS - Barry W. Lynn

The Long Goodbye: After 25 Years, I’m Moving On

I wrote this column on the Ides of March. If you remember your ancient history, you know that March 15 was the day that Julius Caesar was assassinated in Rome by conspirators wielding daggers.

I had an easier day than that, but it was still a bittersweet one for me: It’s the day I publicly announced that I will be retiring at the end of this year.

Moving On

Editor’s Note: Americans United Executive Director Barry W. Lynn announced last month that he plans to retire at the end of this year. Lynn, who has led AU since 1992, discussed his tenure recently with Church & State.


Q. During your tenure, Americans United went from a budget of $1.8 million to $7 million and grew from 10 employees to 37. How did you do that?

A Few Things You Should Know About Barry Lynn

I remember my first day of work at Americans United very well. It was a day in November of 1987, and I was just 24 – yet here I was being given an opportunity to start a career doing something that meant a lot to me – defending the separation of church and state. I felt very lucky.

Americans United at that time was in a transition period. The executive director then, Robert L. Maddox, was working to strengthen the group. He had hired a full-time legal director with the aim of boosting AU’s legal program.

Starting A New Chapter

When Barry W. Lynn agreed to become the executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State in Septem­­ber of 1992, he saw a world of opportunities before him.

The organization had a storied past and lots of potential, so Lynn got right to work. At the time he took the helm, AU was located in a Maryland suburb of Washington, D.C. Two years later, Lynn engineered the group’s move to the heart of the nation’s capital.

Americans United Executive Director Barry W. Lynn Announces Retirement After 25 Years At Helm Of Church-State Separation Group

AU Board Of Trustees Spearheading Search For Organization’s Next Leader

Americans United Executive Director Barry W. Lynn today announced that he will retire at the end of 2017.

Lynn, who will turn 69 later this year, has served as Americans United’s executive director for 25 years. He was appointed by the organization’s Board of Trustees on Sept. 22, 1992.

“The last 25 years have been amazing,” Lynn said. “I’ve been honored to lead Americans United during what has been a challenging period, but I’ve decided it’s time for me to step down and for Americans United to enter its next phase of growth under new leadership.”

Thanks To Trump, A Major Transgender Rights Case Has Been Derailed At The Supreme Court

The Supreme Court this morning announced that it is remanding and vacating the lower-court decision in Gloucester County School Board v. G.G., the first transgender-rights case that the high court had ever agreed to hear.

So what does this mean, in laypeople’s terms? The Supreme Court had scheduled oral arguments for March 28. Now those arguments won’t happen this month. Instead, the case is going back to a lower federal court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, for more deliberation.

Americans United And National LGBT Bar Association Ask Supreme Court To Afford Transgender Student Equal Restroom Access

Organizations Work With Law Firm Hogan Lovells To File Court Brief Asserting Religious Beliefs Can’t Be Used To Justify Government Discrimination Against High School Student Gavin Grimm

Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the National LGBT Bar Association today asked the Supreme Court to affirm that a transgender student can use the school restroom that corresponds with his gender identity.