2021 marks the 30th Anniversary of the founding of the North Carolina Family Policy Council, and we couldn’t be more excited or encouraged as we reflect on this major milestone in the history of this organization, and look toward the future.
The first thing that needs to be said is a big “THANK YOU!” to all of our ministry partners! You have helped make this achievement possible by working together and sustaining NC Family over the past three decades. We could not have made it here without your involvement, action, financial support, and most importantly, your prayers.
In the mid-1980s, Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family and other national Christian leaders recognized a shift in U.S politics and policymaking. More decision-making authority was being handed down from the federal government to the states, and it was becoming more and more imperative to have a strong voice speaking up for families and biblical family values in state legislatures across the nation. It was out of this realization and need that the North Carolina Family Policy Council was born in 1991.
With an initial staff and Board of Directors made up entirely of volunteers, NC Family quickly established itself as a credible and reliable source of research, information, and analysis on policy issues impacting the family. Since our founding, NC Family has been a leading and trusted voice in the cultural battle over issues like the sanctity of human life, marriage, adoption, religious liberty, education, sound fiscal policy, human trafficking, drug abuse, and gambling. As a nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization, we seek every opportunity to share information and form coalitions with like-minded organizations, individuals, and policymakers—regardless of political persuasion—to support good policies and oppose bad ones.
In fact, several years ago, a top Democratic leader in the North Carolina Senate referred to NC Family as “The Conscience of the General Assembly.” This was a high, but humbling compliment, because every member of our staff and Board of Directors takes seriously God’s calling for us to be “salt” and “light” in the world (Matthew 5:13-16), and to “speak the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15). After all, what do we gain if we “win” a legislative battle but leave behind a wake of broken relationships and compromised values?
But don’t take this to mean that NC Family won’t “go to the mat” for the issues we care about—we absolutely will, and we do! However, while we are passionate about the issues we address, we are even more passionate about the relationships we seek to develop, some of which span decades. (You can hear more about what state leaders think of NC Family by watching the testimonial video on our website at: NCFamily.org/about.)
And speaking of decades, NC Family has been extremely fortunate to have had strong and honorable leaders over the years, including former NC Family presidents Susan Renfer, Steve Maye, and Bill Brooks, as well as a host of faithful and dynamic board members like past Chairmen Dick Douglas from Greenville and Henry Williamson from Lewisville, and our current Board Chairman Alan Cole from Winston-Salem. We have also been blessed with incredibly talented staff who have invested their time, energy, and talents in pursuit of our vision of “A state and nation where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive and life is cherished.” Throughout our history, these men and women have built a stable structure and a lasting heritage that, Lord willing, will carry on for decades to come.
But, as I said at the beginning, it is the support of valued partners across the state who believe in what we do and who have invested their time, efforts, prayers, and finances, that has enabled NC Family to make it to this point and to be so well-positioned for the future.
So, as we look ahead to 2021 and the decades to come, THANK YOU for partnering with NC Family to champion the cause of families and biblical family values in our state and nation!
To God Be the Glory!
John L. Rustin is President of the North Carolina Policy Council