If there is no struggle there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation…want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightening. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters... Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.
— Frederick Douglass, 1857

Since 2012, Douglass Leaders have been determined to educate our communities on the Black experience. Through our activism and focus on leadership we have grown as an organization who truly believes in fighting through our obstacles and creating opportunities for the leaders of tomorrow. 



Named after Rochester icon Frederick Douglass, the mission of the Douglass Leadership House (DLH) is to celebrate and raise awareness of the many facets of the black experience including its culture, politics, history, and Diasporic roots. For the first time in University of Rochester (UR) history, the Douglass House will present a physical expression of Douglass' principles, while serving to connect students, alumni, and the Rochester community.


  • Annual Welcome Back BBQ: Our signature BBQ allows the entering freshman and upperclassmen an opportunity to network with each other. Students also have a chance to know the Douglass Leaders on a personal level over great food and intimate conversations. 
  • Lounge Lessons: Currently held this semester bi-weekly every Friday we hold programs for our community surrounding discussions of  some of the most controversial and educational issues. Want something fun? Our Lounge Lessons can also serve you with stress free programs fun activities. Check below for some of our prior topics: 
    • What's the Best City? 
    • What is An Oreo?
    • Hair Texture Discrimination in the Black Community
    • Has Chivalry Died?
    • DLH Game Night
    • "The Cypher" 
  • Project Group Programming: DLH Project Group programming serves as the driving force of our organization since 2012. We host a ton of programming surrounded by Community Engagement, Conflict Resolution, Artistic Diversity, and Leadership Models. For information head over to our tab in the navigation link above. 


  • MSAB Diversity in Programming (2016)
  • 2016 Black History Month Play in Conjection with the Rochester City School District
  • MSAB Diversity in Programming Award
  • MSAB Outstanding Organization Award April 22nd, 2015
  • Initiating programs with inner city students through the Rochester, New York's Youth and Women Christian Academy.
  • MSAB Outstanding Organization Award April 30th, 2014
  • Sigma Lambda Upsilon Appreciation Award
  • 2013 M.A.R.C.H Award for Social & Cultural Awareness.
  • Rochester Outstanding Organization Award 2012-2013