ACLU of Iowa Executive Director Ben Stone Announces Resignation
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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Des Moines, Iowa — After 18 years of leading and expanding the ACLU of Iowa, Executive Director Ben Stone has announced that he will be leaving that position. Stone was hired as executive director in 1996 and is the longest-serving executive director in the ACLU affiliate’s 79-year history. When Stone was hired he was among the youngest affiliate directors in the nation and the office had a total of three staff. The organization currently has eight staff positions with an annual budget that has grown significantly.
“When I came to the ACLU nearly 20 years ago, it was my dream job,” Stone said. “I have been truly privileged to hold the position for all these years. I have absolutely loved being able to fight for individual liberty and equality as the primary spokesperson for the ACLU. It has been a very special honor. But in the back of my mind I have always wondered what it would be like to go back to practicing law, and I feel that the time is right for me to return to fighting for justice one client at a time.”
During Stone’s tenure, the Iowa affiliate took on dozens of important and controversial cases, including lawsuits protecting voting rights, free speech, religious freedom, freedom of expression including flag desecration, LGBT rights, reproductive freedom, and the fair treatment of sex offenders and prisoners.
Ed Broders, ACLU Board of Directors president, said Stone’s departure “should cause all Iowans to reflect on what his 18 years of service have meant to civil liberties in Iowa. His hard work, dedication, and passion in defense of individual freedom and justice are unrivaled and will be greatly missed and long remembered. The people of Iowa and this affiliate owe him a debt of gratitude that is impossible to measure, much less repay. The ACLU of Iowa staff,
board, and members wish him success and happiness in his future endeavors.”
Stone will be assisting the organization through the summer. An interim director will be appointed by the board of directors and a search launched for a new permanent executive director.
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