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MISSION: The Diversity "Think and Do" Tank




Supporting today’s leaders in diversity and inclusion management.

The LEAD Fund was founded to promote and support today’s leaders in EEO, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) management. This role has never been more important.


The DEI profession must lead in both the workplace and in educational institutions. It must also assist in mitigating the forces of retrenchment and fear that seek to return to the status quo ante 1964, before the enactment of the civil rights era legislation and programs. To use Dr. King’s language, we must embrace the “fierce urgency of now.”

The Fund supports education, research and dialogue on diversity in leadership and leadership within the diversity profession.




Thought leadership and action in social justice and civil rights law and policy.

The Fund for Leadership, Equity, Access and Diversity styles itself as a “Think and Do Tank.”  In addition to supporting research on social justice, EEO and civil rights law and policy, the Fund’s mission includes fostering debate and sharing information that can be used at the federal, state and local levels to promote equity and opportunity.  

Publications including the LEAD Fund’s Toolkit, Survey and Accompanying Report on Campus Hate and Bias, are reflective of the Fund’s “Think and Do Tank” efforts.

Recent Programs:

  • Research: LEAD Fund Toolkit and Survey on Campus Hate and Bias

  • Infographs on Social Justice Issues: State Anti-CRT and Anti-Diversity Legislation

  • Amicus Curiae brief on the Harvard and UNC Diversity and Affirmative Action case

  • Statements on Public Policy Issues

  • Speaking Engagements: For a Speaker at your upcoming event, email:




The  LEAD  Fund’s mission includes working to eliminate barriers to equal opportunity not only for today but for the leaders of the future.

Promoting the next generation of leaders is essential to the LEAD Fund’s mission.  For that reason, the LEAD Fund Authors Program has been an important part of its portfolio since 2017.  LEAD Fund Authors are undergraduate and graduate students who conduct research on social policy, civil rights and diversity issues.  Their work is edited professionally and they are paid a small honorarium for the right to publish their work on the AAAED and LEAD Fund’s websites.


The Core of the LEAD Fund's mission is promoting and facilitating the successful transition to more diverse, equitable and inclusive workplaces and educational institutions. 

The reality of the changing population both now and in the future demands that we jettison the barriers, prejudices and biases of the past. We must transition to a more  perfect union, both socially, politically and economically. We must also overcome the headwinds that resist the promises of democracy, even in the 21st Century.

Through research, speaking engagements, symposia, policy analysis, social media and educational programs, the LEAD Fund will support the transition to a more just society of diversity, equity, access, inclusion and opportunity.

The Fund's work supports EEO and diversity practitioners, policy makers, thinkers and advocates on issues related to DE&I, social responsibility, and civil and human rights, both domestically and internationally.

The Fund seeks writers, thinkers, practitioners and advocates to publish and disseminate thought pieces and educational dialogues on the issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, access, opportunity and social justice. 


Undergraduate and graduate students may become LEAD Fund Authors. EEO and Diversity Leaders and LEAD Fund Fellows (post graduates) can share their successes and strategies to promote diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and educational institutions. 


LEAD Fund Fellowships and Internships

The American Association for Access, Equity and Diversity (AAAED) and the Fund for Leadership, Equity, Access and Diversity (LEAD Fund) offer substantive programs designed to give undergraduate and graduate students interested in such fields as equal opportunity, diversity and inclusion, affirmative action, civil rights, EEO law, nonprofit development, human resources, web communications, event management, public affairs and public service, real-world work experience in the policy, practice and nonprofit management fields. The program provides interns the chance to increase their knowledge and awareness of the above issues, enhance their understanding of the way nonprofits work, and observe the legislative and administrative processes of our federal government. Interns are fully integrated into staff activities and involved in membership services, development, web content, training delivery and communications work.  Undergraduate students are called “Interns”.  Graduate students have the title “Fellow.”


AAAED/LEAD Fund interns/fellows will work remotely until further notice. Internships are for a length of one school semester or the summer. Start and end dates are flexible to accommodate school schedules and a 15-20-hour minimum weekly commitment is expected.  For more information about AAAED/LEAD Fund internships and Fellowships, email: or


Undergraduate students are also invited to become LEAD Fund interns during the academic year or summers.


Join us in promoting the next generation of leaders in access, equity and diversity.




Focusing on EEO, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion research in the following issue areas:

  • The Demographic Shift and its Implications

  • Leadership Development for the Nation's Diversity Professionals

  • Promoting the Pipeline to the Nation's Future

  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the STEM fields

  • Operation Collaboration between EEO, Diversity, Human Resources, Legal and Affirmative Action Programs

  • The Science of Disparities

  • The Global Village: Diversity and Inclusion from an International Perspective

  • Faculty Recruitment and Retention Strategies

  • Campus Environment and Climate Studies

  • Civility on Campus

  • Social Justice Policy at the Federal, State and Local Levels and

  • Addressing the Anti-Diversity and Critical Race Theory Backlash

  • Promoting Diversity While Minimizing the Risk of Discrimination


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