UChicago Queer History


1969: Students found the University of Chicago Gay Liberation Front, the City of Chicago's first gay liberation organization.

1984: OutLaw, the organization for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and allied law students at the University of Chicago Law School, is founded.


1991: The University of Chicago hires George Chauncey, becoming the second university in the country to offer a tenure-track position to someone with a gay history thesis.

1992: The University of Chicago becomes one of the first schools to offer domestic partnership benefits to gay and lesbian couples.

1996: The Center for Gender Studies is established.

1997: Led by George Chauncey and Elizabeth Povinelli, the Center for Gender Studies founds the Lesbian and Gay Studies Project.

1998: The University of Chicago adds sexual orientation to its non-discrimination policy.


2001: Kathy Forde and Jim Howley establish the LGBTQ Mentoring Program.

2004: The University of Chicago creates the LGBTQ programming internship position.

2006: The University of Chicago adds gender identity to its non-discrimination policy.

2006: The University of Chicago hosts the swimming and martial arts competitions of the 2006 Gay Games.

2008: 5710 S. Woodlawn opens with offices for the Office of LGBTQ Student Life  and the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, as well as a new LGBTQ Lounge.

2008: Office of LGBTQ Student Life is established. Jeffrey Howard is hired as the founding Director for the Office of LGBTQ Student Life.

2008: The University of Chicago adopts the gender-neutral Open Housing policy.

2009: The LGBT Alumni Network for the University is established.


2013: The University launches the Preferred Name Policy, allowing students to choose their preferred name to be used on Chalk, Grade Rosters, Class Rosters, and the Online Directory.

2014: LGBTQ Student Life begins offering the Safe Space program, creating an ally development training for university community members.