CAP’s Faith Leaders To Watch

The Religion and Faith team at the Center for American Progress publishes an annual list of faith leaders to watch. These clergy and lay leaders are infusing the progressive movement with moral clarity. From immigration reform and gun violence prevention efforts, to foreign policy and the climate crisis, faith communities are a critical constituency across every area of public policy.

In this series

22 Faith Leaders To Watch in 2022
Community members attend a candlelight vigil in Indianapolis.
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22 Faith Leaders To Watch in 2022

There’s been no shortage of faith-based advocacy during the first year of the Biden administration.

Guthrie Graves-Fitzsimmons, Maggie Siddiqi

21 Faith Leaders To Watch in 2021
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21 Faith Leaders To Watch in 2021

From climate change to gun violence to civil rights, religious leaders are having a positive impact on all areas of American public life.

Guthrie Graves-Fitzsimmons, Maggie Siddiqi

Faith Leaders To Watch in 2020
The Rev. Traci Blackmon delivers remarks during a protest rally over restrictive abortion laws on May 21, 2019, in St Louis. (Getty/Michael B. Thomas)
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Faith Leaders To Watch in 2020

Each of these leaders is working to ensure that their faith communities participate in U.S. democracy.

Guthrie Graves-Fitzsimmons, Maggie Siddiqi

9 LGBTQ Faith Leaders to Watch in 2019
The Rev. Naomi Washington-Leapheart delivers a prayer at a vigil in support of the Equality Act in Washington, D.C., May 2019. (Mackenzie Harris/Faith in Public Life)
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9 LGBTQ Faith Leaders to Watch in 2019

These nine LGBTQ faith leaders work to resist injustice and articulate a moral vision for the United States.

Emily London, Maggie Siddiqi, Luke Wallis

10 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2018
Hundreds of people gather for a candlelight vigil following a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, August 2017. (Getty/Chip Somodevilla)
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10 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2018

Follow these 10 faith leaders for a moral vision and strong resistance to injustice.

Gwen Calais-Haase, LaShawn Y. Warren

12 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2017
The Rev. Michael Curry gives a hug before a march and rally against gun violence, on June 28, 2015. (AP/Rick Bowmer)
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12 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2017

In 2017, the voices and actions of these 12 faith leaders will be integral to advancing dignity and equity for all.

Tracy Wolf, Claire Markham

16 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2016
Rev. Waltrina Middleton, one of this year's faith leaders to watch, embraces a member of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, on  June 21, 2015. (AP/David Goldman)
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16 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2016

People of faith are leading the nation’s social justice landscape and working to deliver on long-held values of freedom, equality, and dignity for all.

Claire Markham, Lauren Kokum

15 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2015
Archbishop Blase Cupich walks down the aisle after his installation Mass at Chicago's Holy Name Cathedral on November 18, 2014. (AP/Charles Rex Arbogast)
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15 Faith Leaders to Watch in 2015

Religious leaders and faith-based activists are poised to make significant progress on a range of social justice issues this year.

Claire Markham, Lauren Kokum

13 Progressive Faith Leaders to Watch in 2013
Sister Simone Campbell, executive director of NETWORK and a Roman Catholic nun, addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina on September 5, 2012. (AP/Lynne Sladky)
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13 Progressive Faith Leaders to Watch in 2013

These faith leaders can be expected to continue leading the progressive charge for economic, social, and environmental justice in 2013 and beyond.

Jack Jenkins, Eleni Towns, Catherine Woodiwiss