The ACLU Lunch: Fighting For A More Perfect Union

March 24, 2023 @ 11:00 am 1:30 pm




Please join the ACLU of Illinois for our annual Lunch on Friday, March 24, 2023* at 12:00 PM. This will be a hybrid event with in person and virtual programming. We will welcome guests in person at the Hilton Chicago, while a virtual audience will tune in through a livestream. Whether participants join us virtually or in person, everyone will be able to view the program in its entirety.

We are excited to gather together again, with members of the ACLU community from across Illinois to celebrate the ongoing work to protect and advance civil rights and liberties.  The program will feature keynote speaker Amber Hikes on the ACLU's work nationwide and the role that each one of us can play in bringing us closer to a country where "We the People" truly means all of us. And, we are thrilled to announce that there will be a drag performance featuring Jackie Couture, Joan Jullian, and Jourdin LaRue from Baton Show Lounge to kick-off the Lunch! We encourage you to purchase your tickets or sponsorship today!

*The ACLU of Illinois recognizes that the Lunch is taking place during the month of Ramadan, which is a holy month of fasting and prayer for Muslims. A quiet location will be made available for those observing mid-day prayers.





Hilton Chicago, International Ballroom, 720 S. Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. CT | Registration & Reception
12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. CT | Lunch & Program


12:00-1:30 PM CT | Program

The ACLU of Illinois strives to create inclusive, accessible events that enable all individuals to fully engage with its programming. The in-person program will have ASL interpretation and live captioning and the virtual program will have live captioning. If you would like to request other reasonable accommodations to better participate in this event or have questions about the event, please email


Amber Hikes (they/she), ACLU Deputy Executive Director for Strategy & Culture

Yellow background with speech graphics in various colors. Image of Amber Hikes wearing a bright blue blazer and black shirt.

Amber Hikes (they/she) is a social justice advocate, community organizer, TED Talk Speaker, and unapologetically queer and Black. As the ACLU's Deputy Executive Director for Strategy & Culture, Amber serves as chief counselor and principal partner to the executive director, overseeing the critical functions of organization strategic planning and programmatic priority setting. In this capacity, Amber also provides executive-level senior leadership and management oversight across the organization.

Previously, they served as the ACLU’s first Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer, providing vision, leadership, and direction for the ACLU’s nationwide strategy to support equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) across all aspects of the organization’s work and efforts. Amber was both the internal and external ambassador on the importance of EDI as a crucial cornerstone of the ACLU’s culture of belonging.

In 2017, Amber introduced the world to the More Color, More Pride flag, launching a global conversation around anti-racism in the LGBTQ community. On the heels of this monumental work, Amber released a TED Talk helping all of us be better mentors, sponsors, and believers in collective liberation. With two million views, Amber’s TED Talk has built a network of intersectional accomplices changing the landscape of equity, inclusion, and belonging in the workplace. Read more about Amber here.

ACLU of Illinois Health & Safety Protocols

For the safety of the entire ACLU of Illinois community, full vaccination – as defined by the Center for Disease Control – against COVID-19 or a negative test within 24 hours is required prior to attendance. And, all attendees must wear a mask that covers their nose and mouth while indoors, unless actively eating or drinking. Please note that event COVID-19 protocols, format, or location may change in advance of the event pursuant to updated state or local health directives and we will contact all guests with any updates. Learn more about our health and safety protocols here.